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ERIC Number: EJ1025978
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1740-8989
Elementary Classroom Teachers and Physical Education: Change in Teacher-Related Factors during Pre-Service Teacher Education
Fletcher, Tim; Mandigo, James; Kosnik, Clare
Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, v18 n2 p169-183 2013
Background: In many contexts, elementary physical education (PE) classes are taught by the classroom teacher rather than by a PE specialist. Elementary classroom teachers often cite negative attitudes resulting from experiences as school pupils and inadequate pre-service PE teacher education as barriers to teaching a quality PE programme. Purpose: This research considers the extent to which changes in student teachers' (a) identity as teachers of PE and (b) self-efficacy to overcome barriers to teaching PE occurred during pre-service teacher education. Participants and Setting: Participants (n?=?308) were elementary classroom teachers who were drawn from a one-year, post-baccalaureate teacher education programme located in a North American urban centre. Data collection: Scales from a survey developed by Faulkner, Reeves, and Chedzoy were administered to participants before (n?=?308) and after (n?=?285) they attended a mandatory 12-hour PE methods course and two practice teaching placements. The scales used measured two constructs: identity as teachers of PE and self-efficacy to overcome barriers to teaching PE. Following the initial survey, 10 student teachers were invited to participate in three semi-structured interviews conducted before they attended the PE course; after the completion of the PE course, and following the second of two practice teaching placements. Data analysis: Survey data were analysed using descriptive statistics and inferential statistics. Descriptive statistics provided mean scores for the two constructs measured at pre- and post-test stages; inferential statistics (repeated measures t-tests) were used to identify significant changes in pre- and post-test data. Interview data were analysed using the principles of constant comparison as outlined in grounded theory approaches. Findings: Quantitative analysis suggested that there was a positive and significant change in survey respondents' identities as teachers of PE. Interview participants felt that the pre-service PE course and practice teaching placements provided them with useful examples of how to promote inclusive practice and collaborative opportunities for learning. It also allayed several participants' anxieties that they would be expected to teach PE the same way that they were taught as school pupils. No significant difference was found in self-efficacy for overcoming barriers to teaching PE. Conclusions: The results of this study suggest that it may be worthwhile for PE teacher educators to focus coursework for elementary student teachers on developing their identities as teachers of PE. While in one brief course, the steps that student teachers can make towards forming an identity as a teacher of PE may be small, they are essential given the importance of professional identity development in the processes of learning to teach.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A