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Stimulation or Stress? The Influence of Group Organisational Concepts on Behaviour and Well-Being of Young Children in Child Care

Project duration: 01/04/2016 – 30/09/2018

Principal investigators: Prof. Dr. Rahel Dreyer (ASH Berlin), Prof. Dr. Rainer Senz (Beuth Hochschule für Technik Berlin)

Scientific advisor: Prof. Dr. Susanne Viernickel (Universität Leipzig)

Project staff: Kristin Stammer, Mine Kaya, Lisa Vestring, Elena Wiens, Ulrike Wieland, Mohamed Haji

Project partners: 

The research project pursues the goal of empirical analysis of how (spatial) conditions influence the play interaction and attachment behaviour as well as emotional well-being of one and two year old children in day-care centers.

Behaviour and emotional well-being are indicators for whether a child is feeling emotionally safe in the daycare center. This ensures the child’s involvement and that it benefits from multifaceted educational stimuli.

The analysis focuses especially on the influence of different group organization concepts and constellations, which are currently found in day-care centers (same age vs. mixed age groups, small groups vs. large groups in the context of open or closed group work).

The advantages and disadvantages of different forms of group organization and their impact on the well-being and development of one and two year old children has not been sufficiently established scientifically so far.

For the project, four children aged between 13 and 35 months from each of 45 day-care centers in Berlin will take part in this research project. The empirical approach will be a multi-methodological combination of surveys and interviews of parents and pedagogical workers, video and field based observation of the target children, analysis of documents, measurements of physical and physiological parameters.

The study aims to generate empirically based knowledge about the strengths and weaknesses of different group organization concepts considering further factors (age, personality traits, experiences in daycare centers, attachment) to make them usable for decisions made by the day-care centers and their organizational instructions.

Funding: Berlin Institute for Applied Research - Institut für angewandte Forschung Berlin (IFAF Berlin)

Key words: Group Organizational Concepts; Behavior in Play, Interaction and Attachment; Emotional Well-Being; Childlike Experience of Stress; Quality of Relationship with Pedagogues; Pedagogical Quality; one and two year old Children in German Day-Care Centers

Project E-mail,stimts@ ash-berlin.eu

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