Structured Leisure Activities in Middle Childhood: Links to Well-Being

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Anne C. Fletcher, Associate Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: Associations between children’s (N = 147) participation in structured leisure activities and their adjustment were examined. Caregivers provided lists of extracurricular activities (clubs, sports, and church activities) in which children participated. Children and caregivers participated in interviews and completed questionnaires designed to measure children’s adjustment in four domains (academic competence, psychosocial development, externalizing behavior, and internalizing behavior). Classroom teachers completed additional measures of children’s academic and social competence. Greater participation in club activities was linked with higher academic grades and more positive teacher ratings of academic competence. Greater participation in sports was associated with higher levels of psychosocial maturity and more positive teacher ratings of social competence. There were no associations between involvement in church activities and any indicators of adjustment. Activity involvement was unassociated with externalizing or internalizing behavior. Findings are discussed in terms of both selection into different types of extracurricular activities and the skills emphasized in the pursuit of such activities.

Additional Information

Journal of Community Psychology, 31, 641-659.
Language: English
Date: 2003
Wellness, Children, Parents, Caretakers, Guardians, Sports, Activities

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