Early childhood educators’ awareness and knowledge of the movement guidelines for pre-school aged children in Hong Kong

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers

Abstract

Introduction: Movement behaviours in childhood are believed to track to adulthood, potentially impacting later life. The Guidelines on Physical activity, Sedentary behaviour and Sleep for Children under five years of age by the World Health Organisation was adopted by the Centre for Health Protection in Hong Kong. It is being disseminated to early childhood education centres (ECECs) who had volunteered to join a campaign on healthy eating and physical activity. ECEC educators who are aware and knowledgeable of movement guidelines could help promote healthy movement behaviours. We assessed early childhood educators’ awareness and knowledge of the movement guidelines for young children in Hong Kong.

Methods: Invitations to participate in an online survey were sent to registered local ECECs. Teachers (N = 301) responded to close-ended questions that were adapted from previous studies that measured the awareness (i.e., whether they had seen or heard of them) and knowledge of physical activity, sedentary behaviour, and sleep guidelines for children aged two to six years. Additional questions enquired about the background of the respondents (i.e., professional qualification, age, sex) and the contexts in which physical activities were being implemented in ECEC settings.

Results: Majority of the participants reported awareness and knowledge, respectively, of the guidelines for physical activity (88%, 87%), sedentary behaviour (70%, 80%), and sleep (58%, 84%) of young children. Smaller portions of the participants reported the correct recommended time for physical activity (23%), sedentary behaviour (25%), and sleep (62%). Teachers who have higher degree qualifications tended to be aware of the guidelines for physical activity (Χ2=9.56, p=0.04) and sedentary behaviour (Χ2=13.20, p=0.01), more so than those with lower qualifications. Physical activities were reportedly promoted in ECEC settings during free play (81%), outdoor activities (73%), indoor games (66%), and other learning areas such as literacy and numeracy (28%).

Discussion: It appears that dissemination of the movement guidelines for young children has been adequate to promote awareness amongst ECEC teachers in Hong Kong. However, further effort is needed to ensure that correct knowledge is shared. The findings suggest that policies are needed for a targeted and systematic strategy to enable educators in promoting healthy movement behaviours in ECEC learning contexts. Copyright © 2021 Australasian Society for Physical Activity
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021
EventAustralasian Society for Physical Activity Virtual Conference 2021 - , Australia
Duration: 19 Nov 202119 Nov 2021
https://aspactivity.org/conference/aspa-2021/

Conference

ConferenceAustralasian Society for Physical Activity Virtual Conference 2021
Abbreviated titleASPA 2021
Country/TerritoryAustralia
Period19/11/2119/11/21
Internet address

Citation

Capio, C. M., Chung, K. K. H., Ng, C. S. M., Sit, C. H. P., & Jones, R. (2021, November). Early childhood educators’ awareness and knowledge of the movement guidelines for pre-school aged children in Hong Kong. Paper presented at Australasian Society for Physical Activity Virtual Conference 2021, Australia.

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Early childhood educators’ awareness and knowledge of the movement guidelines for pre-school aged children in Hong Kong'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.