A Comparative Survey Regarding Time Use in Daily Life and the Lifestyles of Kindergarteners' and Nursery School Pupils' Families
石井, 正子 ,
大澤, 彩音 ,
Masako, IshiiAyane, Osawa
43 , 2015-06-01
Preschool education in Japan has been carried out at two sites: kindergartens that target children whose mothers are full-time housewives, and nursery schools that target children whose parents are both working. This paper reports the results of a survey carried out concerning how the above children and parents use their time and considers the assistance they might need. The results of the survey(122 cases in kindergarten and 82 cases in nursery schools) showed the following. Comparing kindergarteners and nursery school pupils, there is no difference in the wake up time, about 7:00 a.m. However, there was about an hour's difference for the average time to go to bed; 20:49 for the kindergarteners and 21:38 for the nursery school pupils. In addition, a larger percentage of nursery school pupils could not wake up unless they were forced to get up. Comparing fathers' returning time from work, the peak for nursery school pupils' fathers was around 21:00, while that of kindergarteners' fathers was around 22:00 showing about an hour's lag. The fathers of kindergartners tended to get home after their children went to bed. Regarding sharing of housework and childcare responsibilities in families, mothers mainly had a heavier burden than fathers in both cohorts. In particular, the mothers of kindergarteners tended to assume all responsibility for housework and childcare. The husbands tended not to help with these tasks. The mothers took care of their children after they returned home until the children went to bed. In such cases, mothers need supports from networks of mothers or local communities, and fathers also must be encouraged to participate in childcare. On the other hand, there were many parents of nursery school pupils who wish to fulfill their work responsibilities though they are worried about having insufficient time to engage in caring for their children. In these cases, taking into account their dilemmas, it is important to encourage them to build a solid parent-child relationship during early childhood, and to suggest concrete methods for enhancing the quality of the limited time they spend with their children.