Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision


The Effect of the Beach on the Play Patterns and Supervision Behavior of One Child Families on Vacation Rudee S. Humphreys Auburn University

This shift in ideals is reflected by a change in behavior of the guardians while on vacation. surf. When on vacation at the beach it is my contention that the behavior.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision The Effect of the Beach on Play Patterns and Supervision Behavior in One Child Families on Vacation The Emerald Coast is blessed with some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. As a subculture. and goals of tourists undergo a temporary shift. I will also be looking for the happenstance of dangerous situations for children involved in my research. leaving their worries behind. both living and nonliving. The transformation from rule enforcement to rule ignoring is evidence of either a lack of understanding the dangers of the area or a lack of caring about the dangers because the goal of the vacation is to forget your cares and woes and have fun. play will be defined in terms the playmate chosen and supervision by eye contact length and the physical space between the child and the guardian. regional. yet I have seen parents and children in the gulf. or social group with characteristic patterns of behavior and ideals that distinguish it from the rest of the culture or society. Families are urged to escape the stress and problems of their daily routines and adopt the tropical lifestyle of rest and relaxation. and gulf waters hold the possibility of danger. the chance of less than typical good parenting behavior will put the child into a precarious position. . Florida·s public service message concerning coastal waters warning flags is frequently played on local 2 television stations. Subcultures can be defined as an ethnic. the sand. through observation only. economic. The purpose of my study is to ascertain. red or purple flags flying. For the sake of my research. for families on vacation. the types of play an only child engages in while on the beach during a vacation and the supervision methods used by their guardian or guardians to insure their safety. values. However. Parents are told to take a load off and unwind.

shark sightings. parents. As a tourist. sexual predator arrests. I could not locate any previous research conducted about families on vacation with play and supervision issues. or is it too risky?µ All agreed that it was risky. and lost children occurrences. asked this question of their reading panel.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision My justification for this undertaking is my experience as a seasoned tourist to this area and my metamorphosis into a local citizen sharing the beach with tourists. . He told me it was an accident but I still told my parents. they are referring to a familiar neighborhood. I was inappropriately touched at the age of ten while on vacation at Panama City Beach by an older boy. A visiting family·s youngest child. Unfortunately. the father of the new playmate touched the daughter inappropriately and the result was heartbreaking for both families. supervision. This new knowledge has influenced me to caution others about the need to be aware of troublesome events. Nursing Standard. an eight year old girl. I was shocked and amazed during my first two years as a local when I listened to local television and newspaper reports concerning the large amount of near drowning incidences. Although I did not speak about this in the classroom. two of the four panelists cited the acquisition of valuable and necessary skills are obtained from exploring the world. A recent incident triggered an old memory and I felt it was important to research my topic. Unfortunately. I was focused 3 on enjoying my vacation time and was unconcerned with the opportunities for accidents and illegal behavior. however. ´Should Parents allow their children to play outdoors unsupervised. A British magazine. was befriended by another young girl. The next day the family was not at the motel. Forty years ago these things were not discussed in polite circles. Results from using play. In 2010 technology has been allowed to help us be safe from those who seek to harm the innocent members of society. and children searches yielded forty-one articles that concentrated on children with behavior problems and several issues concerning children in other countries. However.

Hamm. it found that most of the injuries that occurred to young children were due to an unsafe environment. & Lam. compassion Several stated that a lifeguard who is highly trained should . Also. The results of the study had two fascinating results. She stressed that perpetrators look for access and opportunity and that children are more vulnerable at this time of year. John. and Weeks. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement website was used to locate registered sex offenders in the Miramar Beach. Second. 1999) Two websites were instructive for parents in reference to safety.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision not an unfamiliar. One website in 4 particular. MonkeySee. the National Safety Director of the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children. Call for patience. 44 living within a five mile radius. and over four hundred who live in Okaloosa and Walton Counties. no more than a ninety minute drive to Miramar Beach. to stay with the group. Children visit places that they are unfamiliar with crowds of people moving from one area to another and the likelihood of becoming lost is high. An article from New South Wales about childhood deaths was interesting First. Florida area. First. I did locate many internet articles giving advice to parents about how to keep their child safe while on a beach vacation. The authors further concluded that the deaths could have been averted had a guardian been present (Ross. Children need to be reminded of rules that have been established concerning strangers. provided video segments with advice for parents concerning the summer activities from Nancy McBride. parenting site articles recommended posting rules for the children to adhere to and to review them daily while on holiday. parental supervision directly contributed to injury prevention and deaths of preadolescents. crowded loud beach (Brown. 2007). There are thirteen living within a two mile radius of the chosen observation sites. tolerance. Cass. and to be under an adult·s watchful eye at all times.

Two are focused on the play patterns of the children. and warns parents to put about a foot between themselves and their child when in the water. crowds. Four research questions were constructed to be used to guide my observations of families with only one child. The closer the adult watches the child and the nearer the child is required to play to the adult leads me to believe they understand that cautious behavior is necessary in this environment. It covered the possibility of kidnapping. 2010). The Gulf of Mexico is enticing but it can change quickly and everyone should be on alert. The farther away a child is allowed to be from the supervisor can mean the adult trusts the child to make good decisions. Kessman·s advice article for parents listed and discussed ten beach dangers that I consider very serious. marine life. addressing the currents. relaxation and pleasure. and theft (Kessman. Conceptual Framework and Research Questions The conceptual framework for my study is based on the premise that vacationers become a subculture and the status change influences the decisions they make. the importance of not turning you back on waves and wearing bright clothes.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision be on duty when swimming at the beach. y Are these children allowed to locate and play with an unknown playmate? . The determining factor of the results is what type of play the child engages in while being observed. The undertone of this study depends on the awareness of the adult of beach dangers and if their role as a parent is protecting their child or seeking to rest. The best source for parents was a list with all of 5 the advice needed to survive a day at the beach. one is concentrated on parental surveillance and the final question will show that the subculture values theory has merit. foot protection. the playmate is nonthreatening. or that supervision is not deemed necessary. polluted water.

By setting up the observation site in these areas adjacent to each condominium I am certain that my subjects are single child families on vacation.7 million located on the east end of Scenic 98 in Walton County. a gifted user of shorthand to take notes and an astute people watcher and myself. The observation site is comprised of a large beach umbrella. Five large condominiums on Miramar Beach.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision y y y How well are the new playmates watched while playing? How closely are children kept under supervision when they are playing alone? Are children and parents more trusting of unknown adults when they are on vacation? 6 Methods I chose an ethnographic approach because I will be studying the behaviors of a subculture. Majestic Sun. Seascape. capable of . Edgewater. two beach chairs and other beach items needed to camouflage the team·s intentions. possession of certain traits is necessary for an accurate record of events. Florida were chosen as the sites for observation over the Fourth of July holiday weekend beginning on Thursday. and Emerald Dunes are developments with ten or more stories. my mother will offer her opinion of the situation. one-child families. July 5th. having units ranging in cost from $300. July 1st through Monday. Crescent.000 to $1. As an unobtrusive observer. of a larger culture-sharing group. My duties will be to chose and verbalize the actions of the subjects and when unsure. Each has its own stretch of beach that visiting residents utilize while vacationing. The two woman team consists of my mother as the recorder. Florida. During the observation I must be attentive and articulate the details.

thunderstorms 7 and extreme heat determining our daily observational length.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision reading facial expressions and body language. The established protocol for the observation was discussed with my recorder to establish procedure and continuity. The two major influences were the possibility of a hurricane making landfall in the area during the chosen time for the observation and the recent environmental disaster. An example page has been included at the end of this paper. a story was developed to establish a . It was at this time I decided to use pink for the females and white for the males. The possible limitations of the study are unique to the Destin area. Each night the recorder would read her notes aloud while I put them into written form on the data sheet. and an accurate estimator of research subjects· ages and physical distance between the child and guardian(s). On the first night I had printed the data sheets and several of them were on pink paper instead of white. Finally. Only single child families with one or more guardians and children between the ages of three and twelve were used for the study and the observation had to be at least an hour to be used in the analysis. Even a meteorological prediction of a high percentage of rain for this long weekend would have limited subject choice and the amount of observations which in turn would affect the amount and quality of the data available for analysis. the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. establishment of the observational site based on the location of the first subjects and proximity of possible subjects locating to the area. It was determined after the first day of observations to collect data on twenty children. Each of the five days began with a drive to the area. We devoted between three to nine hours each day to observations. For that reason. should someone become curious of the intentions of the research team and think we are in search of a child the local authorities could be called. with ten of each gender.

Frequently the names 8 were over heard but they were not recorded. With beach conditions like this I determined if a subject found themselves in a scary situation. The team was very careful to disguise the motives of our presence and we spoke very quietly because the breeze off of the gulf water tends to carry sound. During the observations the Lifeguard Safety Flags began the day as yellow but on Saturday and Sunday only they were changed to red. respectfully portraying the subculture under close scrutiny.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision reason for any tourist·s misunderstandings of our behavior.It was very important to produce an ethical study. Analysis and Results . Several times during data analysis I longed for pictures or video to use as a reference. Each day the gulf had an undertow and the waves· height was medium to high medium and they enticed the local surfers to come and have a ride. It establishes my professionalism when conducting a qualitative study using unaware members of the public as subjects. We are going to tell them we are doing research for a children·s book. However. I believe it is unethical to take or use these images without speaking to the subjects. I also wanted to illustrate several of the observed episodes to use as proof for the need of this study. . good conditions for surfers are not good conditions for swimmers and small children. Unfortunately. I would step in to prevent the incident.

Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision 9 Significance This research project could produce information shared with appropriate officials to insure children·s safety from sexual predators and from the possibility of drowning. 21(44).. Hamm. & Weeks. J. . (2007) Editorial: Should parents allow their children to play outdoors unsupervised. M. John. The reputation of the Emerald Coast as a perfect family vacation location could be enhanced Create awareness of all dangerous situations that may take place when on vacation. References Brown.. C. or is it too risky? Nursing Standard. Remind them to be diligent in the protection of their children. S.. Research Results . 572-577. 104-109.ebscohost. Journal of Pediatrics & Child Health.00433x vid=9&hid=7&sid=985c4960-92d8-4ae4-8c92-316f15c56a%40sessionmgr13&b data JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=aph&AN=28132474. All rights reserved. July 1990 ² 1994. Cass. 12(2).Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision 25-27.. © Copyright 2010 Knowlera Media LLC. Ross.S. & Lam. H. F. € Nancy McBride € National Safety Director.auburn.144091754. (2002). European Journal of Public Health. R. 35(6).spot. National Center for Missing and Exploited Children www.1999. (1999).1046/j. Parental permission for children·s independent outdoor activities. Children at play: The death and injury pattern in 10 New South Wales. L. doi:10. Australia. & Bhopal.missingkids.T.lib.. Retrieved from web.

Playmate View Glance View None View Gaze . A F ²9/10 I 1-F.F->25 F F-6/7 2-BP->30 G F-11/12 2-BP->30 H M³3/4 3-BP>30 I I 1 1 2 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 I I I I 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 I I I I I I I I I I M ² 7/8 5-BP>30 J M-8/9 2-GP>60 1 I I I I I I K M-11/12 1 2 BP->30 L M-5/6 1-M->30 M M-6/7 2-BP->30 1 N M-8/9 3-F->35 0 M-4/5 2-BP-<25 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1 I 1 I I I P M-9/10 1 2-BP-<40 1 Totals Danger Play-Alone Subject Time Length 0 to 8 ft.Running Heading: The Effect of the Beach on Play and Supervision 11 Length 0 to <16 ft. Play-Parent Length 0 to 15 ft.<30 1 2 1 1 1 1 I I T1:05 T1:25 @ F1:17 S1:48 S2:26 M2:40 @ M1:16 T2:33 I I I I F2:00 I I I I I I I I I I I I I I SN1:35 @ M1:40 M1:55 @ M2:00 I SN3:14 T2:18 @ F1:33 B F ² 3/4 2-BP-<40 C F-6/7 1-FG-<30 D F-8/9 2 -BP-<30 E F -4/5 1.