Children's Environments
Vol 12, No.4 (December 1995)
ISSN 1546-2250

Children and Their Living Surroundings: Empirical Investigations into the Significance of Living Surroundings for the Everyday Life and Development of Children

 

Marco Huttenmoser
Marie Meierhofer Institute for the Child
Zurich, Switzerland

Citation: Huttenmoser, Marco and Marie Meierhofer. (1995) “Children and Their Living Surroundings: Empirical Investigations into the Significance of Living Surroundings for the Everyday Life and Development of Children.” Children’s Environments 12(4): 1-17. Retrieved [date] from http://www.colorado.edu/journals/cye/

Read this Article (PDF) | Comment on this Article

Abstract

At the core of the results presented is the investigation of five-year old children and their families. Two contrasting groups were investigated: in the first group, children from A families were raised in living surroundings in which it was possible for children to play both unhindered by street traffic and without the presence of adults. In the second group, however, the children from B families could not leave their residence unaccompanied by adults. The results are based on (a) an intensive study of 20 families, (b) a telephone survey of 1726 families in the city of Zurich, and (c) a written survey of 926 families whose 5 year old children were cared for at home. The results show that unsuitable living surroundings considerably hinder the children's social and motor development and put a heavy strain on the parents, Unsuitable living surroundings, that is, mainly those living surroundings dominated by street traffic, prevent the development of lively neighborhoods capable of mutual help.

Keywords: young children, living surroundings, development of children, empirical investigations.