Date Approved

5-1-1996

Embargo Period

9-7-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in Environmental Education and Conservation

Department

Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math Education

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Patterson, F. Gary

Subject(s)

Philadelphia Zoological Garden; Children and adults

Disciplines

Science and Mathematics Education

Abstract

The purpose of this project was to conduct a study assessing adult/child interaction in the TREEHOUSE that will yield a series of recommendations to assist in meeting the educational objectives of the TREEHOUSE.

The author conducted a naturalistic study employing adult/child observations and interviews. The groups studied consisted of between two and five individuals, including one adult and one child. Twenty-two groups were observed and eleven groups were interviewed, four of which were both observed and interviewed. Data was recorded and analyzed. Major findings were presented in the form of text, graphs and charts.

Interaction between adults and children did occur in the TREEHOUSE, but the observations did not support that it was educational interaction. Findings also indicated that interaction was initiated by the child over fifty percent of the time as opposed to a quarter of the time by the adults.

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