This investigation examined the role of routines and activity structures as organizing features in middle school physical education. Six physical education specialists from one suburban middle school were observed during their first four lessons at the beginning of the year and during an additional lesson at midyear. Analysis revealed that routines and activity structures were well established by Day 4 and remained through midyear. Three categories of routines emerged: management, instructional support, and instructional exchange. Activity structures increased when formal instruction began, with four segments occurring during Days 1 and 2 and seven segments observed by Days 3 and 4. Although the types of routines used by these six teachers were similar, differences among teachers appeared to be related to how routines were presented, implemented, and enforced. A number of environmental features appeared to coerce utilization and implementation of routines.
Judith L. Oslin is with the School of Exercise, Leisure, and Sport at Kent State University, 263F MACC Annex, Kent, OH 44242-0001.