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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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Understanding protective and risk factors affecting adolescents' well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic

Min Lan; Qianqian Pan; Cheng Yong Tan (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41539-022-00149-4
This study investigated the factors affecting adolescents’ well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic from the perspectives of their participation in digital activities, emotional regulation, self-regulated learning, and parental involvement. Using self-reported data from 932 pairs of adolescents and their parents, we performed multiple-group structural equation modeling, which revealed that self-efficacy in online learning during school suspension was a key factor influencing adolescents’ perceived worries after schools resumed. During school suspension, boys’ cognitive-emotional regulation played a protective role in their well-being, helping them to avoid cyberbullying incidents, while girls’ participation in leisure-oriented digital activities compromised their self-efficacy in online learning and led to cyberbullying incidents. Furthermore, improvement in parent–child relationships during school suspension encouraged adolescents to use more positive emotional regulation strategies, enhanced their self-efficacy in online learning, and reduced their leisure-time digital activities.
Leadership for inclusive online learning in public primary schools during COVID-19: a multiple case study in Hong Kong

Trevor Tsz-lok Lee

Published: October 2022   Journal: Educational Management Administration & Leadership
Despite the increasing number of studies on educational leadership during COVID-19, little attention has been paid to the intersections of different educational experiences and perspectives of school leaders, students, and their families that occur both inside and outside of schools. Drawing on eight case studies of public primary schools in Hong Kong, this article explores the challenges and strategies of online learning with a focus on effective leadership practices for supporting economically disadvantaged students during COVID-19. To incorporate the perspectives of multiple stakeholders, a series of questionnaires were distributed to principals (n = 8), teachers (n = 150), parents (n = 775), lower primary students (n = 855), and upper primary students (n = 850) and interviews were conducted with principals (n = 8), teachers (n = 37), parents (n = 32), and students (n = 62).
Social networking use, mental health, and quality of life of Hong Kong adolescents during the COVID-19 pandemic

Lu Yu; Meng Du

Published: October 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Public Health

During the COVID-19 pandemic, adolescents' use of social networking sites/apps has surged, and their mental health and quality of life have also been significantly affected by the pandemic and its associated social-protection measures. The present study first examined the prevalence of social networking sites/apps use and social networking addiction, the mental health status, and the health-related quality of life among Hong Kong adolescent students. It further investigated the associations of the youths' daily use of social networking sites/apps and their social networking addiction with their mental health and quality of life during the pandemic. A total of 1,147 students (age = 15.20 ± 0.53 years) recruited from 12 randomly selected local secondary schools in Hong Kong participated in a questionnaire survey in classroom settings between January and June, 2020, right after the COVID-19 outbreak. The questionnaire includes demographic characteristics and scales that measure social networking sites/apps use and social networking addiction, mental health, and quality of life.

The associations between accelerometer-measured physical activity levels and mental health in children and adolescents with intellectual disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic

Wen Yang; Ming Hui Li; Jane Jie Yu (et al.)

Published: October 2022   Journal: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
This study aims to examine the associations between physical activity (PA) levels and mental health in children and adolescents with intellectual disabilities (IDs) during the COVID-19 pandemic, 117 participants aged between 6 and 17 years with IDs from 10 Hong Kong special schools were included. There were positive dose–response associations between PA (i.e., light PA, moderate PA, and vigorous PA) and mental health, and participants with higher levels of moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA) and self-concept (SC) had better social quality of life (QoL) than those with lower levels of MVPA and SC. Moreover, personal and environmental factors such as age, body mass index, school, sex, ID level, and parental education level influenced the PA levels and QoL in children and adolescents with IDs.
Feel like going crazy: mental health discourses in an online support group for mothers during COVID-19

Olga A. Zayts-Spence; Vincent Wai Sum Tse; Zoe Fortune

Published: September 2022   Journal: Discourse & Society
COVID-19 has become a mental health pandemic. The impact on vulnerable demographic groups has been particularly severe. This paper focuses on women in employment in Hong Kong who have had to balance remote work and online schooling for over 2 years. Using semi-ethnography and theme-oriented discourse analysis, this studye examines 200 threads that concern members’ mental health on a popular Facebook support group for mothers.
Parental home monitoring and support and students' online learning and socioemotional well-being during COVID-19 school suspension in Hong Kong

Cheng Yong Tan; Qianqian Pan; Yuxiao Zhang (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Psychology
Contextualized in the prolonged period of COVID-19-related school suspension in Hong Kong, the present study unravels relationships among socioeconomic status (SES), parental involvement, and learning outcomes for a matched sample of 186 primary and 932 secondary school students and their parents who participated in the eCitizen Education 360 survey. Three-step latent profile analysis (LPA) revealed different types of parental involvement at home and in school. For the primary school sample, students’ SES did not predict membership in the parental involvement typology, but students whose parents provided more home monitoring and support had the highest level of online self-efficacy. As for the secondary student sample, students whose parents provided more home monitoring and support tended to have access to more home learning resources. Students whose parents provided home monitoring and support had the highest levels of online self-efficacy, acquisition of digital skills, and cognitive-emotional regulation, and were the least worried about school resumption. The study underscores complex patterns of parental involvement and identifies effective parental involvement practices that contribute to students’ home online learning during the school suspension.
Impact of a focus education in Zoom on COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy in Hong Kong parents of the preschoolers

Wilfred Hing-sang Wong; Hung-kwan So; Jaime S. Rosa Duque (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics
Parental vaccine hesitancy is a major barrier to achieving high vaccination uptake among children, particularly in young children during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Developing herd immunity is a critical concept for overcoming the current pandemic. The purpose of this study is to reduce parental vaccine hesitancy through a focused educational seminar in ZOOM and to empower parents who are concerned about vaccinating their children to communicate with medical experts during live seminars. Parents of preschoolers, teachers, and kindergarten principals from three local pre-school education and services associations attended live seminars. After attending seminars, parental willingness to vaccinate their children increased by 65%. The live Zoom seminar led by medical experts resulted in a decrease in vaccine hesitancy. Our findings support the creation of seminars that allow clients and medical specialists to communicate directly with one another. Offering an open and honest forum for people to express their concerns to medical experts could be a useful strategy for dealing with not only vaccination apprehension, but also other health-related emergencies.
When family interrupted work: the implications of gendered role perception in the face of COVID‐19

S. Susie Lee; Melody M. Chao; Hongwei He (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Journal of Social Issues
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many individuals are confronted with the work-from-home challenge, which often results in work-family interference. Although prior to COVID-19, the influence of traditional gender role expectations was shown to be reduced over time, it is unclear whether and how such traditional worldview might influence judgments towards men and women when family interrupted work under the threat of COVID-19. This study presented and tested competing predictions derived from the gender role theory. An experimental study with 971 adults showed that during (vs. before) COVID-19 pandemic, men were evaluated more negatively when they experienced family interruption to work compared with women. The negative evaluation further led to more punitive reactions and less support at work. The results suggested that gender role expectations reinforced the traditional status quo by punishing status-quo-breakers under the threat of COVID-19.
Intention to vaccinate young children against COVID-19: a large-scale survey of Hong Kong parents

Eva Yi Hung Lau; Jian-Bin Li; Derwin King Chung Chan

Published: April 2022   Journal: Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics
COVID-19 vaccines (Sinovac and Pfizer/BioNTech) have recently been approved for Hong Kong children. Understanding parental intentions to vaccinate children against COVID-19 is important to the development of an effective COVID-19 vaccine campaign. From a large-scale, geographically representative dataset in Hong Kong (N = 11,141), this study examined parents’ intentions to vaccinate their children against COVID-19 under three conditions: (1) no policy restrictions, (2) vaccination rate considered for school resumption, and (3) more choices of vaccine.
Survey data on the attitudes of adolescents in Hong Kong towards the COVID-19 vaccination

Wilfred Hing-Sang Wong; Daniel Leung; Gilbert T. Chua (et al.)

Published: April 2022   Journal: Data in Brief
This article presents a novel data set on Hong Kong's adolescents’ attitude towards the COVID-19 vaccination, excluding their parental opinions. This research used a cross-sectional questionnaire survey, which collects data from the population at a single point in time. Our questionnaire was designed in both English and Chinese for the adolescents’ convenience, using a self-designed, online questionnaire website, which was sent to 30 secondary schools across Hong Kong at the beginning of June 2021, to be completed by 31st June 2021.
Why do Hong Kong parents have low intention to vaccinate their children against COVID-19? testing health belief model and theory of planned behavior in a large-scale survey

Jian-Bin Li; Eva Yi Hung Lau; Derwin King Chung Chan

Published: April 2022   Journal: Vaccine
COVID-19 vaccines have been authorized for use in children in some societies. Parents’ intention to vaccinate their children is context-specific. Drawing upon health belief model (HBM) and theory of planned behavior (TPB), this study contributed to a timely topic by examining the extent to which parents intended to vaccinate their children and its associated factors in Hong Kong, where the government announced children as young as five could take COVID-19 vaccines starting from 21 January 2022. A large-scale, online survey was conducted among 11,141 Hong Kong parents (86% mothers) of children aged 5–12 (N = 14,468, 49.5% girls).
Primary school students’ online learning during Coronavirus disease 2019: factors associated with satisfaction, perceived effectiveness, and preference

Xiaoxiang Zheng; Dexing Zhang; Elsa Ngar Sze Lau (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Psychology
Emergency online education has been adopted worldwide due to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Prior research regarding online learning predominantly focused on the perception of parents, teachers, and students in tertiary education, while younger children’s perspectives have rarely been examined. This study investigated how family, school, and individual factors would be associated with primary school students’ satisfaction, perceived effectiveness, and preference in online learning during COVID-19. A convenient sample of 781 Hong Kong students completed an anonymous online survey from June to October 2020. Logistic regression was conducted for 13 potential factors.
Virtual care during the pandemic: multi-family group sessions for Hong Kong Chinese families of adolescents with intellectual disabilities

Julia Wing Ka Lo; Joyce Lai Chong Ma; Mooly Mei Ching Wong (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: Journal of Intellectual Disabilities
The suspension of social services in Hong Kong during the COVID-19 pandemic increased the caregiver strain for families of adolescent children with intellectual disabilities, possibly aggravating their family relationships. This article reports on an online Multi-Family Group (MFG) conducted during the pandemic for Hong Kong Chinese families of adolescents affected by mild-to-moderate intellectual disabilities. A thematic analysis of the experiences of the participating service users revealed three positive effects of the intervention model: improved family relationships, mutual helpful influences occurring among families, and a new understanding of family members with intellectual disabilities. The therapeutic group process used to promote family development is illustrated by a group vignette. The challenges and the practical considerations for conducting an MFG online are discussed.
Dyadic associations between COVID-19-related stress and mental well-being among parents and children in Hong Kong: An actor–partner interdependence model approach

Randolph C. H. Chan

Published: February 2022   Journal: Family process
The spread of COVID-19 and its subsequent social distancing policies have profoundly impacted the lives of parents and children. Prolonged exposure to parenting-related responsibilities and heightened levels of family conflict under stay-at-home orders coupled with reduced access to support systems and resources have rendered parents and children more prone to stress and mental health difficulties. Drawing on a transactional model of parent–child interactions, the present study applied an actor–partner interdependence model approach to examine the transactional relationship between COVID-19-related stress and mental well-being among parents and children. Data from 109 Chinese parent–child dyads in Hong Kong were included in the study.
Significant increase in astigmatism in children after study at home during the COVID-19 lockdown

Yuanyuan Liang; Tsz-Wing Leung; Jinxiao Tina Lian (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Clinical and Experimental Optometry

Evaluating changes in refractive astigmatism after ‘study at home’ during the COVID pandemic may shed light on the aetiology of refractive errors. This study aims to investigate whether there has been a change in the proportion of astigmatism among primary school children after the school closure period during the COVID-19 pandemic.This observational study compared cross-sectional (2018: n = 112; 2020: n = 173) and longitudinal data (n = 38) collected from two vision screenings, one in 2018 and the other after the school closure period in 2020, in the same primary school for children aged 8–10 years. Non-cycloplegic refraction and axial length were measured using an open‐field auto‐refractometer and IOL Master, respectively. A questionnaire focusing on demographic information, near-work time, and outdoor activities was administered to parents of all participants.

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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.


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