|Abstract or Summary
- The purpose of the study was to find out how a group of
faculty wives with children used their time and to investigate some
factors in housing and equipment which might influence how they
used their time. A comparison was made between homemakers
with two pre-school age children and homemakers with two school
age children in the way they used their time.
Following a letter of explanation of the study, the writer contacted
the homemakers by phone to make an appointment to visit
them. During this visit the writer obtained the information for the
questionnaire and explained the time sheets. Twenty-four homemakers,
12 with pre-school children, and 12 with school-age children
kept usable records for this study.
The homemakers ranged in age from 21 to 62 years of age.
All of the homemakers had attended college with 42 percent graduating
and an additional 16.5 percent earning their master's degree.
Two were registered nurses. Both groups averaged four years of
work before marriage. The homemakers with pre-school children
had been married an average of eight years while the homemakers
with school age children had been married an average of 18 years.
The children ranged in age from four months to 18 years old.
The 12.5 percent of the families that did not own their own
homes were all from the group with pre-school children. Although
all of the homes were well equipped, the families that had been established
the longest time had slightly more equipment.
Half of the total group used time plans; the majority of the
homemakers using time plans were homemakers with pre-school
Homemakers in this study as well as previous studies most
often listed food preparation as the homemaking activity they most
enjoyed. Again, cleaning house was most often listed as the activity
least enjoyed, followed by ironing. Improved housing, equipment,
and methods have failed to change these attitudes in over a quarter
of a century.
The homemakers with pre-school children spent the greatest
percentage of their time caring for children followed by meal preparation
and clean-up; the homemakers with school age children spent
the greatest percentage of their time on food preparation and clean-up. Both groups spent a little over two and a half hours on
meal preparation and clean-up.
Homemakers with school age children averaged 48 minutes a
day on laundry, whereas homemakers with pre-school children averaged
70 minutes a day. Cleaning house averaged 63 minutes a day
for homemakers with school age children and 45 minutes a day for
homemakers with pre-school children. Homemakers with school
age children averaged 39 minutes for shopping, whereas homemakers
with pre-school children averaged 23 minutes. The homemakers
with school age children averaged 8 hours and 45 minutes of rest per
day, whereas the homemakers with pre-school children averaged 8
hours and 8 minutes.
Homemakers with school age children spent more time eating
meals, on personal care, and on entertaining and social activities,
whereas homemakers with pre-school children derived much of their
leisure time from unplanned coffee breaks and chatting with neighbors.
Other than the great difference in the amount of time the two
groups spent in caring for their children, (the homemakers with pre-school
children spent 3 hours and 38 minutes while the homemakers
with school age children spent 39 minutes), there was great
similarity in the way the two groups used their time. Another
finding is that there is little difference in the amount of time the
homemaker spent on different homemaking activities at the time of
this study in comparison to studies done during the past quarter of a