BACKGROUND : There has been an overwhelming call to improve the understanding of how
children develop within an African context as Euro-American definitions of competence have
been uncritically adopted as the norm for children in Africa. The activities that children engage
in within the family setting are seen as important to understand how children develop within
context. The use of activity settings is closely aligned with a strengths-based perspective of
family-centred practice and contributes to improved sustainability of intervention.
OBJECTIVES : This study that was conducted in Soweto, South Africa, aims to describe activity
settings that typically developing young children in low-income African contexts participate in.
METHOD : A descriptive design using structured interviews was utilised to obtain information
about activity settings that children aged 3–5 years and 11 months engaged in. Structured
interviews with 90 caregivers were conducted.
RESULTS : Findings show that children participate in a variety of activities with varied
participation levels. The types of activities are dependent on the context and perceptions of
CONCLUSION : These findings draw attention to understanding activities that children engage in
within the family context.
This article is based on the first author’s unpublished
thesis titled ‘Family-based activity settings of typically
developing three-to-five-year old children in a low-income
African context’ currently uploaded onto an academic
repository available at https://repository.up.ac.za/handle/