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ERIC Number: EJ1045986
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1740-8989
"The Sweetness of Struggle": Innovation in Physical Education Teacher Education through "Student-Centered Inquiry as Curriculum" in a Physical Education Methods Course
Oliver, Kimberly L.; Oesterreich, Heather A.; Aranda, Raquel; Archeleta, Jarrod; Blazer, Casey; de la Cruz, Kandy; Martinez, Daniel; McConnell, Jenn; Osta, Maggee; Parks, Lacie; Robinson, Rinalldo
Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, v20 n1 p97-115 2015
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine the challenges and benefits that emerged while using an innovative field-based student-centered inquiry as curriculum model in a secondary physical education methods course. Participants and setting: This study took place in the Southwest USA. Participants included 11 pre-service teachers who were enrolled in a secondary physical education methods class, the instructor of the course and a faculty member from another department within the College of Education. Data collection/analysis: Data were collected during the 2009-2010 school year. Data included (a) all pre-service teachers' generated coursework; (b) 32 instructor's lesson plans; (c) 32 observations with field notes; (d) debriefing notes from conversations with colleagues, pre-service teachers, and high school youth; (e) transcripts from three formal 2-hour interviews with each pre-service teacher; and (f) the transcript of a professional conference presentation given by the professor and 8 of the 11 pre-service teachers. We analyzed our data through what Cochran-Smith and Lytle describe as "inquiry as stance" that constructed knowledge through the interaction and inclusion of multiple voices, positions, and realities in order to make sense of a collective experience. Findings: This study describes the outcomes of utilizing an innovative field-based approach to teaching a physical education methods course, student-centered inquiry as curriculum model, as a means of challenging the status quo of physical education in order to better meet the needs of today's youth. First, we discuss how within the context of inquiry, the pre-service teachers named their experiences and relationships in the course as a "community of learners." Within this community of learners, we describe the benefits and challenges to teaching and learning that emerged. It was through inquiry that "the sweetness of struggle" created the spaces for all of us to learn what it means to be professionals and challenge the status quo of what exists in our beliefs and values about teaching, learning, and youth. Implications: When implementing an innovative approach to field-based work, physical education teacher educators need to pay close attention to the challenges that emerge. While some challenges created the spaces for pre-service teacher learning to emerge as benefits, others simply reified long-existing inequities in higher education. Professors need to pay particular attention to how challenges that result in inequities so that they can respond structurally to resolve the inequities. However, the challenges that create spaces for pre-service teachers' learning, even though discomforting, need to be left alone.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A