Physical Literacy (Mis)understandings: What do Leading Physical Education Teachers Know About Physical Literacy?

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Physical literacy is a term and concept that has, in recent years, been gaining in both usage and popularity in many physical education (PE) contexts. However, discussion, writing, and understanding of physical literacy have been marked by uncertainty, confusion, or resistance. Since physical literacy can be found in several curricular documents and outcome statements, it would certainly be ideal for PE teachers to share a common understanding. This article reports on a qualitative case study in which 12 lead PE teachers from four Canadian provinces were interviewed, the purpose of which was to acquire knowledge about PE teachers’ understanding of physical literacy. Results suggest that these leaders are largely unable to articulate conceptions of physical literacy that are in line with contemporary perspectives. In light of these findings, a discussion about these physical literacy (mis)understandings is also offered.

Robinson is with the Faculty of Education, St Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada. Randall is with the Faculty of Education, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada. Barrett is with the Faculty of Education, Brock University, St Catharines, Ontario, Canada.

Address author correspondence to Daniel B. Robinson at dan.robinson@stfx.ca.
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