Exploring children’s perceptions of smoking with the ‘draw and write’ investigative technique
There is a paucity of research on smoking among young children, even though it is known that the developmental process that leads to smoking begins in early childhood through the mechanism of primary socialization, when exposure to the habit fosters children’s attitudes, beliefs and perceptions about tobacco smoke (Royal College of Physicians, 1992). This scarcity has resulted in a lack of awareness of the thinking of young children about smoking and the extent to which they smoke. This has implications for the development of appropriate interventions for school health education, as effective methods are based on the thinking of target groups. It is therefore imperative to determine the depth and breadth of children’s understanding and knowledge about smoking, in order to ensure a relevant strategy. The purpose of this study was to examine the perceptions that make up the attitudes and beliefs about smoking of children at the age of 6. The findings will help to fill the significant gap in the literature on young children and smoking and assist in the development of pro-active health promotion.
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