“You’ve got a Friend in Me” A Case for using Entertainment Education and Gamification Elements in Children’s Physical Activity Sessions: Creating an Immersive Environment to Increase Engagement.

James Steele, Emily Budzynski-Seymour, Michelle Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Engaging children in physical activity is a pertinent research area. The health benefits of physical activity are well known, however it is consistently reported that many children are failing to accumulate the recommended hours. The media may have a role to play in physical activity promotion, however this is a relatively under explored area. This research aims to explore one potential use of the media by investigating children’s preferences for characters, specifically Disney characters, which are present in the media that they are frequently exposed to. Focus groups were conducted, with 27 children (20 girls, 7 boys) aged between seven and ten. In the focus groups children were asked to draw their favourite Disney character and then discuss in the group the reasoning behind the chosen characters. The results were discussed in relation to two areas of research, entertainment education and gamification and how all of this can be incorporated into a physical activity setting. The main findings from the study suggest that if you can create an immersive environment, by incorporating elements such as characters/preferred characteristics of a character which have been identified by this research, you may be able to promote physical activity to children.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Medical Internet Research
Publication statusSubmitted - Jun 2020

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