Development of activity level in children revisited: Effects of mother presence

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D. K. Routh et al (see record 1974-25047-001) found a consistent decrease in children's activity in a standardized playroom over the ages 3-9 yrs. The present experiment (using 100 10 mo-5 yr olds) was an attempt to extend these findings downward to the age of 10 mo, which necessitated certain changes in procedures. Surprisingly, in Exp I there was a significant increase in activity level over the ages from 3 to 5 yrs. Exp II (96 3-, 4-, and 5-yr-olds) then varied factorially the procedural differences between the 1974 Routh et al study and Exp I, namely the furnishings (tables and chairs vs rugs), type of toys (child toys vs baby toys), and the presence or absence of the child's mother from a small adjoining cubicle. The anomalous findings of the other 2 studies were reproduced and found to be due to the effects of mother presence rather than the other factors varied. With mother present, 5-yr-olds (but not 3- or 4-yr-olds) were significantly more active than with mother absent. (16 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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