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Gender Differences in Recess Play in Five Fiji Primary Schools

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Abstract

This study aimed to investigate gender differences in the level of social interaction and types of play and games in which class four pupils in five Fiji primary schools in Suva are engaged during school recess. Five researchers observed 168 (male n = 79, female n = 89) class four pupils over three months, using scan sampling. With a mixed method approach, the study analysed quantitative data using the Kruskal–Wallis test, while qualitative data was gathered via five focus groups with recess observers. Qualitative data derived from these focus groups were used as a smaller component of the study to support quantitative findings in the dominant–less dominant mixed methods study. It was found that boys are significantly into ‘vigorous’ and ‘fantasy’ play more so than girls, while girls are engaged in ‘conversation’ more than boys during recess. This indicates that boys play more vigorous activities during recess than girls. Furthermore, it also indicates that boys may view recess as opportunity to be engaged in vigorous play, while girls may see it as opportunity to socialise with their friends. These and other discussions will have implications for a recess policy in Fiji.

Keywords

  • Fiji
  • School recess
  • Recess play
  • Fantasy play
  • Vigorous play

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Notes

  1. 1.

    iTaukei-Fijians are the indigenous people of Fiji. Indo-Fijians are descendants of Indians brought in by British colonial rulers between 1879 and 1916. Rotumans are Polynesians of an outlier island called Rotuma. Rabians were originally from Banaban Island in Kiribati, relocated to Fiji in 1945 to give way for phosphate mining.

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Correspondence to Jeremy Dorovolomo .

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Dorovolomo, J. (2020). Gender Differences in Recess Play in Five Fiji Primary Schools. In: Dorovolomo, J., Lingam, G. (eds) Leadership, Community Partnerships and Schools in the Pacific Islands. Springer, Singapore. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-15-6483-3_8

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-15-6483-3_8

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