Changing recess geographies: children’s perceptions of a schoolyard renovation project promoting physical activity

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Abstract

Insights into children?s perceptions of their changing recess geographies are absent. The current paper provides qualitative evidence from 5 renewed schoolyards by investigating children?s perceptions of their new schoolyards. Ten focus groups (2 at each school) including go-along interviews were conducted, in total 57 4 to 8 graders (28 girls). The functional aspects of the altered child?environment relationship were assessed using Gibson?s concept of affordance, and changes in the meanings ascribed to the schoolyards by the children were studied by engaging a concept of place. Our findings reveal that schoolyards offering multiple potential affordances for physical activity seem more likely to engage a broader group of children in recess physical activity. The analysis, however, could point to a difference between places designed for children?s play and places where children actually play. To optimise actualisation of the potential affordances for recess physical activity, involving children throughout intervention planning and decision-making is crucial.
Original languageEnglish
JournalChildren's Geographies
Volume17
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)664-675
ISSN1473-3285
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2. Nov 2019

Fingerprint

Geography
physical activity
renovation
Exercise
geography
project
Focus Groups
Group
decision making
Interviews
planning
interview

Keywords

  • Children
  • affordances
  • focus group interview
  • intervention study
  • recess physical activity
  • schoolyard renovation

Cite this

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title = "Changing recess geographies: children’s perceptions of a schoolyard renovation project promoting physical activity",
abstract = "Insights into children?s perceptions of their changing recess geographies are absent. The current paper provides qualitative evidence from 5 renewed schoolyards by investigating children?s perceptions of their new schoolyards. Ten focus groups (2 at each school) including go-along interviews were conducted, in total 57 4 to 8 graders (28 girls). The functional aspects of the altered child?environment relationship were assessed using Gibson?s concept of affordance, and changes in the meanings ascribed to the schoolyards by the children were studied by engaging a concept of place. Our findings reveal that schoolyards offering multiple potential affordances for physical activity seem more likely to engage a broader group of children in recess physical activity. The analysis, however, could point to a difference between places designed for children?s play and places where children actually play. To optimise actualisation of the potential affordances for recess physical activity, involving children throughout intervention planning and decision-making is crucial.",
keywords = "Children, affordances, focus group interview, intervention study, recess physical activity, schoolyard renovation",
author = "Pawlowski, {Charlotte Skau} and Andersen, {Henriette Bondo} and Jan Arvidsen and Jasper Schipperijn",
year = "2019",
month = "11",
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doi = "10.1080/14733285.2019.1582754",
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journal = "Children's Geographies",
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TY - JOUR

T1 - Changing recess geographies: children’s perceptions of a schoolyard renovation project promoting physical activity

AU - Pawlowski, Charlotte Skau

AU - Andersen, Henriette Bondo

AU - Arvidsen, Jan

AU - Schipperijn, Jasper

PY - 2019/11/2

Y1 - 2019/11/2

N2 - Insights into children?s perceptions of their changing recess geographies are absent. The current paper provides qualitative evidence from 5 renewed schoolyards by investigating children?s perceptions of their new schoolyards. Ten focus groups (2 at each school) including go-along interviews were conducted, in total 57 4 to 8 graders (28 girls). The functional aspects of the altered child?environment relationship were assessed using Gibson?s concept of affordance, and changes in the meanings ascribed to the schoolyards by the children were studied by engaging a concept of place. Our findings reveal that schoolyards offering multiple potential affordances for physical activity seem more likely to engage a broader group of children in recess physical activity. The analysis, however, could point to a difference between places designed for children?s play and places where children actually play. To optimise actualisation of the potential affordances for recess physical activity, involving children throughout intervention planning and decision-making is crucial.

AB - Insights into children?s perceptions of their changing recess geographies are absent. The current paper provides qualitative evidence from 5 renewed schoolyards by investigating children?s perceptions of their new schoolyards. Ten focus groups (2 at each school) including go-along interviews were conducted, in total 57 4 to 8 graders (28 girls). The functional aspects of the altered child?environment relationship were assessed using Gibson?s concept of affordance, and changes in the meanings ascribed to the schoolyards by the children were studied by engaging a concept of place. Our findings reveal that schoolyards offering multiple potential affordances for physical activity seem more likely to engage a broader group of children in recess physical activity. The analysis, however, could point to a difference between places designed for children?s play and places where children actually play. To optimise actualisation of the potential affordances for recess physical activity, involving children throughout intervention planning and decision-making is crucial.

KW - Children

KW - affordances

KW - focus group interview

KW - intervention study

KW - recess physical activity

KW - schoolyard renovation

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