BEIJING: Chinese children are interested in the world around them but much of their focus is directed towards study leaving them little time to interact with friends, a recent study suggests.

Based on a survey of 8,847 children in seven cities across China, The Annual Report on Children's Participation in China (2017) from the Chinese National Children’s Center, examined their social habits and how they interacted with parents.

This found that around two thirds are interested in environmental issues (69%) and social security (63%), while only slightly fewer are concerned about international political problems (58%) and local social dilemmas (53%), Women of China reported.

Study, however, plays the most important role in children’s lives, it added, noting that almost half took part in tutored classes closely related to school exams.

The report went on to suggest that, with 68% having never participated in activities unrelated to school and study, children’s participation in extracurricular activities was “inadequate”.

At home, study continued to dominate with nine in ten parents talking about study-related problems with their children on a regular basis and almost half of students talked about studies with their parents every day.

More than half (53%) of children studied with their parents every week and 45% did exercise with them. Two thirds also found the time to watch television together.

Offering a possible escape from parental influence, three quarters of students reported having their own phones. Most had social media accounts, with QQ (85%) and WeChat (71%) the most widely used.

They were also confident about their future and their ability to improve public life (71%), while half have been volunteers and three quarters have donated money to help others.

Sourced from Women of China, China Daily; additional content by WARC staff