This study examined types of activities available to children and how classes were organized when elementary P.E. was taught by nonspecialist classroom teachers. Observations were conducted in 84 elementary schools in southern California. The observation instrument was validated by having independent observers code three videotaped classes and compare their responses to those of three teacher educators specializing in observation methods and elementary P.E. Interobserver reliabilities were 96.3 on the activity selection and 83.3 on class organization. Results indicated that when students were involved in an organized class activity, they usually participated as an entire class in game-type activities such as relays, kickball, and dodgeball. The children had few opportunities to engage in skill practice or gymnastics and dance activities. Frequently, teachers dropped P.E. classes from the day’s schedule or permitted children to engage in free play. Fitness related activities were prominent during less than 3% of the classes.
Nell Faucette, Thomas L. McKenzie and Patricia Patterson
Nell Faucette and Patricia Patterson
This study compared the teaching behaviors of elementary physical education specialists with those of classroom teachers (nonspecialists) while teaching physical education classes. Additionally, data were collected on student activity levels to detect similarities or differences in classes taught by specialists versus nonspecialists. Four specialists and 7 nonspecialists were observed during a 3-month period using the Teacher Observation Schedule (Rushall, 1977). The group time-sampling technique, Placheck recording, was used to gather data on the students’ levels of activity during the observed classes. It was found that specialists had significantly higher values in more effective teaching behaviors such as feedback/reward, questioning, and directing/explaining/informing, and significantly lower values in less effective teaching behaviors such as monitoring/attending. Additionally, there were significantly higher levels of activity for students in classes taught by specialists.
Susan K. Lynn and Amelia Mays Woods
The Fessler and Christensen (1992) teacher career cycle model provides the theoretical framework for this case study incorporating a narrative design nested within a larger research project examining six teachers’ journey across the career cycle (Woods & Earls, 1995; Woods & Lynn, 2001). The current case study sought to gain a greater understanding of why one teacher, Patsy, was unable to negotiate environmental hurdles that are commonplace in physical education and how these factors were being negotiated as a classroom teacher. Data sources included: seven interviews with the participant, multiple interviews with her principals, spouse, and three former university teacher educators, field notes from live lesson observations, and related documents. An interpretative framework was used to understand the perceptions and meanings Patsy gave to her experiences and revealed that she reported being both positively and negatively affected by most of the personal and organizational environmental factors in the teacher career cycle model. Viewing Patsy’s teaching career through the lens of the career cycle provides insight into areas of change necessary to motivate and retain quality physical education teachers.
Erin Holt, Todd Bartee and Kate Heelan
Implementing physical activity (PA) within academic curricula increases energy expenditure and enhances academic achievement in elementary students. The purposes of the study were to determine the extent teachers met the 20-minute PA policy, identify how teachers met the policy, and measure the level of intensity of PA provided.
Four elementary schools (grades K−5; 68 classroom teachers) implemented a district-mandated 20-minute PA policy. Teachers recorded PA for 1 week in September 2010 and February 2011. A sample of 142 students (grades K−5) wore accelerometers to measure school day PA.
While 40% and 4% of teachers in September and February respectively met the policy all 5 days, 72.5% and 45.7% of teachers in September and February respectively implemented PA at least 3 days/week. Accelerometry results indicated curriculum-based lessons (CBL; 59.92 ± 20.38 min) or walk/run periods (51.56 ± 18.67 min) significantly increased school day MVPA (P < .05) above no additional activity (30.96 ± 22.57 min).
Although the teachers did not meet the 20-minute policy every day, the increased amount of PA achieved each week through the teachers’ efforts is a significant contributor to total daily PA levels of children.
Karen Martin, Alexandra Bremner, Jo Salmon, Michael Rosenberg and Billie Giles-Corti
The objective of this study was to develop a multidomain model to identify key characteristics of the primary school environment associated with children’s physical activity (PA) during class-time.
Accelerometers were used to calculate time spent in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity during class-time (CMVPA) of 408 sixth-grade children (mean ± SD age 11.1 ± 0.43 years) attending 27 metropolitan primary schools in Perth Western Australia. Child and staff self-report instruments and a school physical environment scan administered by the research team were used to collect data about children and the class and school environments. Hierarchical modeling identified key variables associated with CMVPA.
The final multilevel model explained 49% of CMVPA. A physically active physical education (PE) coordinator, fitness sessions incorporated into PE sessions and either a trained PE specialist, classroom teacher or nobody coordinating PE in the school, rather than the deputy principal, were associated with higher CMVPA. The amount of grassed area per student and sporting apparatus on grass were also associated with higher CMVPA.
These results highlight the relevance of the school’s sociocultural, policy and physical environments in supporting class-based PA. Interventions testing optimization of the school physical, sociocultural and policy environments to support physical activity are warranted.
David Kahan and Virginie Nicaise
Curriculum interventions aimed at increasing physical activity in schools may prove useful in contexts where changes in policy/environment are not feasible. Design/evaluation of interventions targeting minority groups is important in light of well-publicized health disparities. Religious minorities represent a special subset that may positively respond to interventions tailored to their unique beliefs, which to date have been relatively underreported.
Muslim American youth (n = 45) attending a parochial middle school participated in a religiously- and culturally-tailored 8-wk, interdisciplinary pedometer intervention. School-time ambulatory activity was quantified using a delayed multiple-baseline across subjects ABA design. Visual analysis of graphic data as well as repeated-measures ANOVA and ANCOVA and post hoc contrasts were used to analyze step counts including the moderating effects of day type (PE, no-PE), gender, BMI classification, grade, and time.
The intervention elicited modest increases in males’ steps only with effect decay beginning midintervention. BMI classification and grade were not associated with changes in steps.
Full curricular integration by affected classroom teachers, staff modeling of PA behavior, and alternative curriculum for girls’ PE classes may further potentiate the intervention.
Emily Bremer and Meghann Lloyd
The purpose of this pilot study was to demonstrate the impact of a fundamentalmotor-skill (FMS) intervention on the motor skills of 3- to 7-year-old children with autism-like characteristics in an early intervention classroom. A secondary purpose was to qualitatively assess the impact of the program as described by the classroom’s special education teacher. All children in the classroom (N = 5) took part in an FMS intervention for two 6-wk blocks (fall 2013 and winter 2014). Motor-skill proficiency and social skills were assessed at 3 times: baseline, after Block 1 of the intervention, and after Block 2 of the intervention. In addition, an interview was conducted with the classroom teacher after Assessment 3 to draw further insights into the relative success and impact of the program. Results were analyzed through a visual analysis and presented individually. They indicated improvements in the participants’ individual FMS and social-skill scores, possible improvements in declarative knowledge, and an increase in the special education teacher’s readiness to teach FMS; further research with larger, controlled samples is warranted.
Maurice W. Martin, Sarah Martin and Paul Rosengard
PE2GO is a self-contained physical education (PE) program that provides classroom teachers with the tools they need to lead developmentally appropriate PE lessons. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the PE2GO pilot programs in 6 school districts across the United States.
We used paper and pencil surveys at pre intervention (n = 114) and mid intervention (n = 94) and an electronic survey at post intervention (n = 65). In addition an electronic survey was sent to administrators at preintervention (n = 18); focus groups were conducted with teachers at mid intervention for a broader perspective. The study took place September 2004 through May 2005.
Results indicate that teachers were satisfied with the PE2GO program and the perceived effects it had on their students. Teachers reported that students increased their time engaged in physical activity (128.7−181.1 minutes per week pre-to-post intervention). Administrator support was important (ie, associated with improvement), but not always present.
In conclusion, the PE2GO program holds promise for the concept of providing in-class physical activity opportunities for students.
Tan Leng Goh and Kristin Scrabis-Fletcher
at the time of the study was 437 (61.1% White/European American; 15.9% Black/African American; 9.2% Hispanic; 7.6% Asian; 6.2% two or more races). The researchers reached out to the PE teacher who helped in the coordination of the MI program, as well as the recruitment of the three classroom teachers
Julianne A. Wenner, Kimberly M.B. Tucker, Hannah G. Calvert, Tyler G. Johnson and Lindsey Turner
of the PE teacher’s requests because PA is highly valued in the school (norms) and rally behind the teacher’s request. Then, because the PE teacher frequently collaborates with classroom teachers, those classroom teachers donate to the cause (trustworthiness). Conversely, if a PE teacher possesses