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Developing safe route planing strategies in young child pedestrians

Thomson, J. (1997) Developing safe route planing strategies in young child pedestrians. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 18 (2). pp. 271-281. ISSN 0193-3973

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Abstract

This paper identifies deficiencies in young children's route planning strategies in traffic contexts and reviews intervention programs relating to this ability. Evidence concerning age-related changes shows that only a small proportion of children aged 5 years are able to construct safe routes to a destination, with the proportion increasing steadily through the middle childhood years. Intervention programs utilizing pre-test/post-test comparisons and no-treatment controls show that 5-year-olds' abilities can be improved dramatically. Longer term stability of such improvements is also assessed. Intervention programs tailored for use with groups of young children and for use by parents from socio-economically deprived areas of Glasgow, Scotland, are also evaluated.