A cross cultural study on the current status of outdoor play

This study aimed to explore outdoor play experiences of Turkish and Finnish parents in their childhood and their children. Although outdoor play was well documented in the literature, only a few empirical analyses (e.g. Clement, 2004) was conducted on the current status of outdoor play. In an attempt to explore parents' perspectives, Vygotsky's sociocultural theory was used. The sample of the study consisted of 14 participants including Turkish (n=7) and Finnish (n=7) parents. Data sources of current study involved semi-structured interviews. Participants were asked to talk about their own and their children's outdoor play experiences in terms of the place of play, the toys and materials, and the amount of time spent outside. Voluntariness and confidentiality of participants were considered. Major findings highlighted both Turkish and Finnish children spent less time outdoors compared to their parents. Similarly, both Turkish and Finnish parents stated they had fewer toys compared to their children. However, they reported they had more opportunities to contact with nature through active games. All parents stated economic, social and technological changes affected the time spent outdoors and the types of play. Different from Finnish parents, Turkish parents emphasised more safety and health concerns as a reason of spending less time outdoors. In addition, Finnish parents stated they go natural places with their children on weekends whereas Turkish reported they generally go indoor playgrounds particularly during the winter. As children spent less time outdoors with their parents, kindergartens should provide outdoor play sessions in natural outdoor environments.
Citation Formats
F. Yalçın and F. Erden, “A cross cultural study on the current status of outdoor play,” presented at the 26th EECERA Conference, (31st – 3rd September 2016), Dublin, Ireland, 2016, Accessed: 00, 2021. [Online]. Available: https://hdl.handle.net/11511/72483.