Middle School Teachers’ Strategies for Including Overweight Students in Skill and Fitness Instruction

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Paul B. Rukavina Adelphi University

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Sarah Doolittle Adelphi University

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Weidong Li The Ohio State University

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Mara Manson Adelphi University

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Angela Beale American Red Cross Scientific Advisory Council

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As part of a larger study, this paper describes teachers’ perspectives and strategies on including overweight and obese students (OWS) in instruction related to motor skill/game play and fitness development in physical education. Using the Social Ecological Constraints framework, a qualitative multicase study was conducted using multiple in-depth interviews, class observations, and artifacts from nine experienced and committed suburban middle school Physical Education teachers. Constant comparison was used to generate themes and trustworthiness procedures were used to confirm findings. Two types of strategies for including OWS in instruction were identified: First-order and Second-order. School resources, shared program goals, and beliefs about students and teaching were factors influencing teachers’ decisions and actions for teaching motor skill/game play and fitness content to OWS.

Rukavina is with the Department of Health Studies, Physical Education, and Human Performance Science, Adelphi University, Garden City, New York. Doolittle and Manson are with Exercise Science, Health Studies, Physical Education, and Sport Management, Adelphi University, Garden City, New York. Li is with the Sport and Exercise Education Dept., The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH. Beale is an Educational Consultant, American Red Cross Scientific Advisory Council and Diversity in Aquatics, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Address author correspondence to Paul Rukavina at rukavina@adelphi.edu.
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