An investigation of preschooler’s play preferences regarding the design of outdoor play areas

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2018
Çetken, Hatice Şebnem
The aim of this study was to investigate the design of preschool outdoor play areas and children’s play preferences. Through behavioral mapping method, the study deeply investigated the effects of a design characteristic on children’s outdoor play preferences. A total of 102 preschool children were observed during free outdoor play times. During the observations lasted one and a half month, The Playground’s Physical Elements and Environmental Characteristics Indicative Scoring Scale and Parten/Piaget Play Recording Form were used to evaluate 6 outdoor play areas in terms of design characteristics, play materials and equipment, and children’s play preferences. The findings of the study indicated that the design of the outdoor play area with different design features such as trees, rocks, or bushes would affect the play types and play preferences of children. While traditional play areas with very limited natural elements usually guided children to engage in functional and solitary play, in the play areas with more. While natural elements, children preferred to engage in constructive and creative play more often. Moreover, play areas with more open spaces allowed children to play active games such as running, rolling, or jumping.

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Citation Formats
H. Ş. Çetken, “An investigation of preschooler’s play preferences regarding the design of outdoor play areas,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2018.