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Christine M. King and John M. Dunn

The purpose of this study was to examine the accuracy of classroom teachers in observing students’ motor performance. In order to assess teacher accuracy in rating motor performance, an analysis was conducted on students’ scores on the Short Form of the Bruininks–Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency (BOT-S) between those who were rated high as compared to those who were rated low in motor performance, as determined by a teacher observation form. The two-tailed t statistic indicated a significant difference between standard mean scores for upper and lower quartile performances on the BOT-S (P<.05). However, there was a high degree of variance within the high and low groups. The results suggest that classroom teachers are more accurate in observing high motor performance than in observing low motor performance.

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Sarah Burkart, Jasmin Roberts, Matthew C. Davidson and Sofiya Alhassan

. Methods Participants Data collection for this study occurred as part of a larger PA intervention study called Project PLAY (Preschoolers skilL-based ActivitY study). 17 Project PLAY was a group-randomized controlled 6-month pilot study designed to examine the effect of a classroom teacher

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Sofiya Alhassan, Christine W. St. Laurent, Sarah Burkart, Cory J. Greever and Matthew N. Ahmadi

. Research to date suggests that a preschool center’s ORHB environment plays a role in children’s ORHBs. 9 – 11 A review by Ward et al 4 reported that for a health behavior intervention to be sustainable, it must be delivered by the center staff (eg, classroom teachers). However, teachers are generally

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Pilvikki Heikinaro-Johansson and Claudine Sherrill

The purpose was to develop a model to guide assessment for physical education planning for integration and inclusion at the school district level. A secondary goal was to determine if teachers’ gender, age, education, and experience of teaching children with special needs are associated with beliefs about barriers to integration. To test the model, data were collected from physical education specialists and classroom teachers in central Finland. The survey instruments were three scales: (a) Awareness of Individual Differences Survey, (b) Survey of Adapted Physical Education Needs–Finnish modification (SAPEN-F), and (c) Teacher Beliefs About Physical Education Integration Scale. Results indicated that Finnish teachers know they have students with special needs. PE specialists and classroom teachers share many common beliefs about priority needs. Teachers believe that the most important barrier that hinders physical education integration is attitude. The model described herein worked in Finland and is ready for further testing by other countries.

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Pilvikki Heikinaro-Johansson, Claudine Sherrill, Ronald French and Heikki Huuhka

The purpose of this research was to develop and test an adapted physical education consultant model to assist regular elementary school classroom teachers to include children with special needs into regular physical education. The consultation model consisted of (a) Level 1, conducting a needs assessment, (b) Level 2, designing/implementing the program, and (c) Level 3, evaluating the program. The model was tested in two communities in Finland using the intensive and the limited consulting approaches. Data collection methods included videotaped observations of teacher and students, interviews, dialogue at interdisciplinary team meetings, and journals. Results are presented as case studies, which describe the process and product over a 2-month period of model implementation. Analysis of data indicate that classroom teachers, paraprofessionals, and students benefited from the consultant model. The adapted physical education consultant model appears to be a viable approach in facilitating the integration of children with special needs.

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Rosemarie Martin and Elaine Murtagh

Background:

A cluster randomized controlled trial was conducted to assess the effectiveness of the Active Classrooms intervention, which integrates movement into academic lessons, on the moderate-to-vigorous physical activity levels (MVPA) of primary school children during class-time and throughout the school day.

Methods:

Ten classroom teachers and their students aged 8 to 12 years were recruited and randomized into the Active Classrooms intervention group (n = 131students, n = 5teachers) or a delayed-treatment controlled group (n = 117students, n = 5teachers). The intervention group participated in active academic lessons taught by the classroom teacher over an 8 week period. Accelerometers were used to gather physical activity data at baseline, postintervention and at 4 months follow-up. Teachers completed a questionnaire to evaluate the program.

Results:

A significant difference for change in daily class time MVPA levels was identified between the treatment (n = 95) and control (n = 91) groups from pre- to postintervention (P < .001) and this difference was maintained at follow-up (P < .001). No significant difference emerged between the treatment and control groups for change in school day MVPA levels from pre- to postintervention (P = .52) or follow-up (P = .09). Teachers reported that they were highly satisfied with the program.

Conclusions:

Movement integration has the potential to improve physical activity levels of primary school children in the classroom.

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Jim DePaepe, Ron French and Barry Lavay

Burnout is a syndrome that has had a negative effect on the behavior of regular and special classroom teachers. The purpose of this investigation was to determine (a) whether special physical educators experience symptoms of burnout and (b) whether these symptoms fluctuate over time. Based on the results of this investigation, the subjects exhibited several symptoms that are related to the burnout phenomenon. Furthermore, these symptoms characteristically are high throughout the school year. It was concluded that special physical educator supervisors should design appropriate strategies to prevent or reduce these symptoms. Not only would this have a positive effect on teaching behavior but it would in turn improve student learning.

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Erin Holt, Todd Bartee and Kate Heelan

Background:

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.

Methods:

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.

Results:

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).

Conclusions:

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.

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Karen Martin, Alexandra Bremner, Jo Salmon, Michael Rosenberg and Billie Giles-Corti

Background:

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.

Methods:

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.

Results:

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.

Conclusion:

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.

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David Kahan and Virginie Nicaise

Background:

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.

Methods:

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.

Results:

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.

Conclusions:

Full curricular integration by affected classroom teachers, staff modeling of PA behavior, and alternative curriculum for girls’ PE classes may further potentiate the intervention.