The aim of the present study was to examine the construct validity of the DEMOST-PRE©, using the criterion of the known groups. For that purpose, the performance of 18 children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), aged 48-72 months (M=66.6, SD=8.05 months) and 12 with intellectual disabilities (ID) (M=62, SD=9.42 months) on the nine items of the DEMOST-PRE© was compared to that of 18 typically developing peers (TD) (M=64.9, SD=8.74 months). According to the results, TD children demonstrated significantly higher scores than both the ASD and ID groups of children in all test items except the ‘overhead toss to a specific target’ (F2,45= 2,659, p =.081), while the performances of ASD and ID groups were similar. The current findings provide support for the construct validity of the DEMOST-PRE© indicating that it can serve as a valuable tool for preschool aged children.
The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of a music/movement program on the motor rhythmic ability of 70 children, aged 48-72 months (59.67+6.38) randomly assigned to experimental (EG, n=36) and control group (CG, n= 34). The EG participated in a 20-week music/movement program, while the CG did not follow any organized physical activity. Before and after the program children’s rhythmic ability was measured using the subtest “Jump on the rhythm” of the Democritus-Psychomotor Assessment Tool for Preschool Children (PAT-PRE). According to the results of the two-way ANCOVA that was implemented, both program and gender had a statistically significant effect on children’s scores (F1,65= 222.24, p< .001, η2= .84 and F1,65= 6.60, p < .05, η2= .09 respectively) after controlling for the effect of the pre-test, while there was not a significant effect of those factors’ interaction. The children of the EG had significantly higher scores than those of the CG, while girls outperformed boys in both groups. However, effect size value of gender was moderate; consequently, these differences were not of practical importance. The current findings provide support for the beneficial effect of a developmentally appropriate music/movement program on rhythmic ability of preschool aged children.