Background: This study aimed to compare the levels of objectively-measured sedentary behavior in children attending Montessori preschools with those attending traditional preschools.
Methods: The participants in this study were preschool children aged 4 years old who were enrolled in Montessori and traditional preschools. The preschool children wore ActiGraph accelerometers. Accelerometers were initialized using 15-second intervals and sedentary behavior was defined as/15-second. The accelerometry data were summarized into the average minutes per hour spent in sedentary behavior during the in-school, the afterschool, and the total-day period. Mixed linear regression models were used to determine differences in the average time spent in sedentary behavior between children attending traditional and Montessori preschools, after adjusting for selected potential correlates of preschoolers’ sedentary behavior.
Results: Children attending Montessori preschools spent less time in sedentary behavior than those attending traditional preschools during the in-school (44.4. min/hr vs. 47.1 min/hr, P=0.03), after-school (42.8. min/hr vs. 44.7 min/hr, P=0.04), and total-day (43.7 min/hr vs. 45.5 min/hr, P = 0. 009) periods. School type (Montessori or traditional), preschool setting (private or public), socio-demographic factors (age, gender, and socioeconomic status) were found to be significant predictors of preschoolers’ sedentary behavior.
Conclusions: Levels of objectively-measured sedentary behavior were significantly lower among children attending Montessori preschools compared to children attending traditional preschools. Future research should examine the specific characteristics of Montessori preschools that predict the lower levels of sedentary behavior among children attending these preschools compared to children attending traditional preschools.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Published in International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, Volume 10, Issue 2, 2013.
© 2013 Byun et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Byun, W., Blair, S., & Pate, R. (2013). Objectively measured sedentary behavior in preschool children: comparison between Montessori and traditional preschools. International Journal Of Behavioral Nutrition And Physical Activity, 10(2).