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Leisure-Time Activities Including Children with Special Needs: A Research Overview

Birgitta Lundbäck, Linda Fälth

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In Sweden and the other Scandinavian countries children are offered a curricular based combination of care and teaching before and after compulsory school hours. These leisure time centers, so-called fritidshem, are offered to children aged between 6 and 12 whose parents’ study or work, as well as to children that require special development support. The aim of this systematic literature review was to investigate how similar activities are described in international research. The focus was on children aged 6-12 who have been assessed to need special support. The initial step in this literature survey was the reading of 108 abstracts from academic articles. The second step included 21 articles that were read in their entirety. Fourteen of them met the sampling criteria and were included in the result section. The Nordic model combines care and curricular activities before and after compulsory school hours. In other countries activities taking place after school hours are separated into activities meeting children’s need of care and activities supplementing school. Another result that became clear in this research is the need of further studies to map pre- and after-school activities where children are simultaneously offered development support and care, with special focus on children in need of extra support.

Key words: after school activities, leisure time activities, leisure time center, special needs


Bibliography: Lundbäck, Birgitta/Fälth, Linda: Leisure-Time Activities Including Children with Special Needs: A Research Overview, IJREE – International Journal for Research on Extended Education, Vol. 7, Issue 1-2019, pp. 20-35.