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Kim C. Graber, Amelia Mays Woods and Jamie A. O’Connor

In 2004, Congress passed the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act that requires schools to implement a wellness plan. Grounded in Ecological Systems Theory (EST) (Bronfenbrenner, 1977, 1979), the purpose of this study was to explore the impact of the legislation, discover what measures have been taken to enact the legislation, gauge how the legislation has impacted the work environment of physical educators, and better understand EST in relation to the legislation at the level of the microsystem. In total, 51 individuals participated in in-depth interviews that were triangulated and inductively/deductively coded. The results indicate that (a) principals and physical education teachers had limited knowledge of the plan, (b) school nutrition programs profited more than physical education, (c) physical education is becoming less marginalized, (d) physical education teachers missed an opportunity to use the legislation for program improvement, and (e) individuals at different levels of the system need to interact.

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K. Andrew R. Richards, Kim C. Graber and Amelia Mays Woods

Catherine Ennis was an educator, researcher, mentor, and innovator in the field of physical education. As mentor for doctoral students and early-career researchers, she advocated the importance of developing a research agenda to guide and connect one’s scholarship. The central feature of a research plan, she argued, was a guiding theoretical framework that helps scholars interpret their findings and make connections to larger bodies of literature. In this article, the authors discuss Ennis’s position that theory should guide and connect research in physical education and provide examples of how she developed complementary research agendas throughout her career that were connected to constructivist and social justice theories. The goal of both these research agendas was to improve the experiences of children and teachers in physical education programs. In concluding, the authors connect Ennis’s use of constructivist and social justice theories to the ethic of care and make recommendations for teacher education programs.

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K. Andrew R. Richards, Karen Lux Gaudreault and Amelia Mays Woods

Purpose: This study sought to develop a quantitative understanding of factors that reduce perceived isolation and marginalization among physical educators. A conceptual model for the relationships among study variables was developed. Method: Data were collected through an online survey completed by 419 inservice physical educators (210 females, 209 males, 93.60% Caucasian). Variables included perceived mattering, resilience, personal accomplishment, as well as isolation and marginalization. Primary data analyses included structural equation modeling to test the hypothesized relationships in the conceptual model. Results: The structural equation model fit was good, χ2(315) = 669.38, p < .001, RMSEA = .05 (90% CI = [.05, .06], p = .285), SRMR = .05, NNFI = .93, CFI = .94. After removing non-significant regression pathways, the structural model generally confirmed the study hypotheses. Discussion/Conclusion: Enhancing personal accomplishment and resilience helps to foster perceptions of mattering, which reduces physical educators’ perceived isolation and marginalization.

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Chad M. Killian, Christopher J. Kinder and Amelia Mays Woods

Online and blended instruction have emerged as popular teaching methods in the K–12 environment. The asynchronous characteristics of these methods represent potential for improved learning opportunities in physical education. Therefore, the purpose of this scoping review was to provide a comprehensive overview of research, commentary, and practical articles related to the use of these methods in K–12 physical education. Method: PRISMA-ScR guidelines directed this review, and 5 databases were searched for English-language articles. Results: Twenty-four articles fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Of these, 14 were research-based and 10 were commentary or practical articles. Most related research has been conducted in secondary-school environments. Minimal learning-related outcomes were reported across studies. Evidence provided in commentary and practical articles is largely anecdotal and based on research from other subject areas. Conclusions: Systematic research related to the design, adoption, and implementation of online and blended instruction in physical education is warranted.

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Heather E. Erwin, Amelia Mays Woods, Martha K. Woods and Darla M. Castelli

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Amelia Mays Woods, Kim C. Graber, David Newman Daum and Chris Gentry

This study examined physical activity (PA) variables related to recess PA patterns of kindergarten, first and second grade children, and the social preferences and individuals influencing their PA. Data collected (N = 147) used the System of Observing Children’s Activity and Relationships during Play (SOCARP) instrument. Children were interviewed. Kindergarten boys spent a significantly higher percentage of time in MVPA (t = 3.137, d = .96, p < .008). Kindergarten girls spent significantly more time standing (t = 3.548, d = 1.07, p < .008). Second grade boys spent a significantly (t = 4.44, d = 1.98, p < .0125) more time in sport activities. Second grade girls spent significantly more time in sedentary (t = 4.399, d = 1.11, p < .0125) and locomotor (t = 3.533, d = .899, p < .0125) activities. Participants articulated the prominence of friends, engaging in games/activities, and playing on the playground equipment.

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Jesse L. Rhoades, Amelia Mays Woods, David Newman Daum, Douglas Ellison and Thomas N. Trendowski

This case study presents an examination of 30 years of Journal of Teaching in Physical Education (JTPE) research. The purpose of this study was to provide a retrospective view of JTPE and its contribution to the field of physical education. In this effort the current study employed citation analysis, coauthor network analyses and thematic coding based phylogenic analysis. Data were collected through an online repository of JTPE articles and through google scholar examination of citation counts. Results indicated that JTPE has undergone subtle changes during the course of its existence. Further, thematic analysis revealed that the topical content of the journal has remained consistent over the course of its operation.

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Amelia Mays Woods, Kristin N. Bolton, Kim C. Graber and Gary S. Crull

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Ben D. Kern, Kim C. Graber, Amelia Mays Woods and Tom Templin

Physical education teachers have been criticized for not implementing progressive or innovative instruction resulting in enhanced student knowledge and skills for lifetime participation in physical activity. Purpose: To investigate how teachers with varying dispositions toward change perceive socializing agents and teaching context as barriers to or facilitators of making pedagogical change. Methods: Thirty-two teachers completed a survey of personal dispositions toward change and participated in in-depth interviews. Results: Teachers perceived that students’ response to instructional methods and student contact time (days/week), as well as interactions with teaching colleagues and administrators influenced their ability to make pedagogical changes. Teachers with limited student contact time reported scheduling as a barrier to change, whereas daily student contact was a facilitator. Change-disposed teachers were more likely to promote student learning and assume leadership roles. Conclusion: Reform efforts should include consideration of teacher dispositions and student contact time.

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Ben D. Kern, Suzan F. Ayers, Chad M. Killian and Amelia Mays Woods

Background/Purpose: Student retention in physical education teacher education (PETE) programs is critical to promoting high-quality physical education in schools. This aspect of the current study was to investigate PETE program coordinators’ perceptions of their role in the process of retaining students within their programs. Method: Thirty-six PETE program coordinators (12 males and 24 females) completed in-depth interviews. The data were analyzed using a standard interpretative approach grounded in inductive analysis and constant comparison. Results: The PETE coordinators in this study perceived retention to be: (a) aligned with core job expectations, (b) grounded in relationships, (c) impacted by external and policy factors, and (d) limited by time and resources. Discussion/Conclusion: Retention in PETE is supported when faculty members utilize constructivist learning pedagogies and develop a sense of belonging among PETE students. Retention issues may be addressed through involvement with state policymakers and professional organizations.