Do you want to play with me? Acceptance and preference dilemmas in choosing playmates with physical disability

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This small-scale study aims to explore acceptance and preference dilemmas in choosing playmates with physical disability of typically developing 6-8-year-old Cypriot children. 18 participants were interviewed individually in a simple process involving scenarios and questions with the use of images of hypothetical peers with and without physical disabilities. Interview questions were based on three different scenarios about activities requiring different degrees of mobility. It was found that the majority of children tend to choose the hypothetical children with physical disability as playmates even for activities involving mobility. Children's justifications of their choices are of particular interest and fall within the sphere of morality and empathy rather than functionality. Some misconceptions about physical disability are associated with limited previous encounters with such individuals. Findings guide educators in choosing appropriate activities in the framework of child-focused intervention programmes aiming to promote fruitful social interactions between children with and without physical disabilities.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEarly Child Development and Care
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • Physical disability
  • Acceptance
  • Physical impairment
  • Playmates
  • Inclusion

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