Studies & Research

Parks and Recreation Ontario (PRO) founded HIGH FIVE® in 2001 after years of research. PRO's research projects help to inform its quality standard and strengthen HIGH FIVE's training, tools and resources to be on trend with current information about healthy child development. 

Research shows the experiences children have in recreation and sport at an early age carry a life- long impact. Positive experiences help children become capable, caring adults who contribute more effectively to the community in the future. 

PRO’s research also identifies five Principles of healthy child development that are essential for quality programs:

Furthermore, the research supports that in order for sport and recreation programs to meet the developmental needs of children, the following elements must be in place:

  1. Practitioners must have knowledge and training on the development of children
  2. Practitioners must be able to assess the impact of all aspects of their program on children
  3. Practitioners must adhere to the 5 Principles of healthy child development in:
    • The design and development of programs and activities,
    • the delivery of programs and activities,
    • the hiring and training of staff, and
    • the selection of sites and environments
  4. Significant emphasis on interactions between children and staff as recreation and sport leaders are perfectly situated to play this critical role