Research by sixth grade pupils of the Deftera Elementary School concludes that children spend most of their time in front of the TV screen, playing video games or surfing the internet.
Furthermore, the research revealed that time spent on extracurricular activities such as dance, music and computer classes are minimal.
The research was conducted with the participation of students of the Deftera elementary school.
For research purposes, two important questions were established: First, "to what extent perceptions of parents about how children should make use of their free time is consistent with their own choices or desires," and second, the identification of factors taken into account by parents when deciding on extracurricular activities for their children.
It is interesting to note that the survey results revealed that the pressure children often feel or the impression created that they do not have free time is not due to their extracurricular activities seen as the time spent in the afternoon hours watching TV and playing video games are much more.
Although at the beginning of conducting the research there was a prevailing impression that children were deprived of play time due to other extracurricular activities which are potentially chosen by their parents, time showed that is somewhat different.
As mentioned in the report prepared by the pupils themselves, "the first thoughts about why we feel pressured, is because we fill all our afternoons with extracurricular activities and do not have any free time".
In their conclusion, however, pupils in the sixth grade of primary school of Deftera said: "As a final conclusion we would say that children have free time and the activities they do are palatable and pleasant."
In regard to the choices of extracurricular activities the survey found that "the criteria for the selection of afternoon activities seems to be almost complete identified by the views of parents and children".
The first criterion for selecting activities is the degree of liking the activity of choice and the fact that an activity may help the child in the future. Equally important for the choice of activity on behalf of the parents is the talent that has their child has in an activity, for example dancing. music etc.
Answers of students
All children watch TV every day and deal with homework.
Much of their time is spent playing video games and surfing the internet
Few children engage in activities such as music, dance and computer classes.
Answers of parents
Children watch an average of 6.5 hours per week
They spend an average of five hours per week doing homework
Four hours are spent playing electronic games
Time spent for extra curricular activities such as dance, music, computer classes is minimal
There is an exception with extra English classes for which children spend two to three hours a week
In order to achieve satisfactory results, children were asked to mention their activities during afternoon hours as well as the amount of time spent for each of them.
The same was asked of parents.
The questionnaire handed out to children and parents included the following afternoon activities: TV, homework, electronic games, free play time, internet, meeting friends, English extra lessons, sports, sleeping, extra classes, dancing, computer lessons and music.
The research clearly showed the dominance of TV over the rest of activities.
This is also why the research came to the conclusion that the pressure felt by children which they attribute to lack of time does not seem to be due to the pressure of parents to engage in activities which aren't of their choice but neither due to lack of time.
"The extra curricular activities which have to do mostly with foreign language classes, sports, music or dancing require much less time in comparison to the time children spend watching TV or playing electronic games," says the conclusion of the research.