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Journal Issue: When School Is Out Volume 9 Number 2 Fall 1999

Neighborhoods of Southern California Children and Families
Ross D. Parke Robin L. O'Neil

Summary

Middle childhood is a time when children move beyond the boundaries of family to explore the neighborhood, forge their own relationships with friends and neighbors, and have experiences independent of their parents. Depending on the character of the surrounding community, parents are more or less comfortable allowing unfettered exploration by their children. This article reports a study of families with 9- and 10-year-olds in an array of southern California neighborhoods, showing close links between parent perceptions of their neighborhoods, the rules they impose on their children, and the children's experiences and social skills.