Bibliographies of Camp-related Research

Bibliographies of Camp-related Research

Independence of Japanese kindergarten children associated with a five-day resident camp
Minoru, I.
Doctoral Dissertation, George Peabody College for Teachers, 1957.

Purpose:
Determine the effects of a five-day residential camping experience on the independence of kindergarten children in school and at home and examine the relationship between gender, birth order, age differences, mother's expectations of early independence, friendship status and camp satisfaction.

Sample:
Subjects: 95 (58 male, 37 female) children in the camp group, 61 children (33 male, 28 female) in the control group. The mean age of the children was five years, 11 months.
Camp Affiliation: The camp was sponsored by the Tsukuba University Physical Education Department.

Method/Instruments:
Method: The children lived in six tent groups of eight children and two counselors. Camp goals included: developing independence, discovering the relationship between living things and the environment, and improving interpersonal skills. Activities included nature study, mountain climbing, dramatics, drawing, and outdoor living skills.

Instruments:

  • Dependence-Independence Scale: adapted to measure independence at home, in school, and at camp.
  • Age-Independence Scale: measured parental expectations of child's independence.
  • Sociometric Questionnaire: measured children's friendship choices and popularity.
  • Postcamp Evaluation: measured satisfaction with the camp experience.

Design: pre-test/post-test with control group design and follow-up at six-seven weeks and seven months after camp.

Data Analysis:

  • t-test for mean gain score and mean pre-test/post-test differences on independence data. Multiple Regression Analysis used to examine percentage of variance in camp independence accounted for by home and kindergarten independence scores and correlation between camp, home, and school independence.
  • t-test for differences in independence based on gender, birth order, and age.
  • t-test for between group differences on early independence expectations.
  • Chi-square test to analyze camp friendship formation data. Sociograms were used to plot friendship relationships of each child in camp. t-test for differences in independence scores between high and low popularity campers.
  • t-test to analyze for independence differences based on camp satisfaction.

Results:

  • Significant difference between pre- and post-camp tests of independence for the camp group, indicating that the children who participated in camp experienced greater increases in independence than those who did not. This difference was retained at the six-week but not at the seven-month follow-up interval. Significant relationship between independence a home, at school, and at camp. Children who were more independent in school and at home were more independent at camp. However, home independence was not found to be a predictor of independence at camp.
  • No gender, age, or birth order differences in independence.
  • Mothers who sent their children to camp had higher expectations for early independence for their children. However, there was no evidence that the children of mothers who had high expectations for early independence were more independent at camp.
  • Significant increase in the number of friendship choices. Children who attended camp had more friends at the end of camp than at the beginning of camp.
  • No relationship between children's popularity at camp and independence.
  • Children who were more satisfied with the camp experience were more independent in camp than those who were not satisfied.
  • The researcher also observed that five-year-olds can accomplish more than parents, early childhood educators, and child psychologists expect.

 

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