Social Interaction and Social Organization of Israeli Fiveto Seven-Year-Olds

Rachel Hertz-Lazarowitz, Dina Feitelson, Shoshana Zahavi, Willard W. Hartup

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Four hundred and eight children kindergartners and first-graders from three experimental infant schools in Israel were observed in outdoor free play, forty minutes each day, for three continuous weeks. Social interactions and social organization were recorded using a modified version of Parten's (1932) system of categorization. Findings showed that the children engaged mainly in positive-active behaviors (over fifty-four percent). Solitary play and onlooker behavior accounted for thirty percent of children's social behavior. Parallel play occurred less frequently than reported earlier for younger children, although no age differences were observed between kindergartners and first graders. Boys were significantly more active than girls, and exhibited negative social interaction more frequently. Social organization was balanced. Children were observed fifty-seven percent in dyads, twenty-seven percent in groups of three and four children, and fourteen percent in groups with more than five children. Kindergartners participated in significantly smaller groups than first graders.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)143-155
    Number of pages13
    JournalInternational Journal of Behavioral Development
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - Jun 1981

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Social Psychology
    • Education
    • Developmental and Educational Psychology
    • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
    • Developmental Neuroscience
    • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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