Type of Document Dissertation Author Vives-Rodriguez, Maria E. Author's Email Address email@example.com URN etd-11012005-141722 Title Preschool Physical Education: A Case Study of the Factors that Influence Movement Instruction to Preschool Children Degree Doctor of Philosophy Department Childhood Education, Reading and Disability Services, Department of Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Vickie E. Lake Committee Chair Cynthia Lundeen Committee Member Ithel Jones Committee Member Roxanne Hudson Committee Member Thomas Ratliffe Committee Member Keywords
- Early Childhood Curriculum
- Physical Activity And Young Children
- Preschool Physical Education
Date of Defense 2005-10-03 Availability unrestricted AbstractAmple evidence supports the notion that physical education programs contribute to the development of the whole child and in doing so should be an integral part of every school’s curriculum (Campbell, 1997). I undertook this case study to investigate the factors that influence movement skill instruction to preschool children in order to explain the insufficient amount of movement education at a preschool. Finding and understanding these factors can facilitate the successful implementation of a movement program that addresses children’s physical activity needs.
The data gathered through document analysis, teacher and parent surveys, participant observation, and teacher and parent interviews revealed several factors that limit the teaching of movement education at the University Preschool. These factors were sorted by each of the elements in Ajzen’s Theory of Planned Behavior (1991): attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control. The majority of the codes that emerged related to the element of attitudes. However, because most of the teachers’ attitudes did not match their practices, the other two elements were more critical for pinpointing the barriers to movement education.
The most influential factors were related to teachers’ perceived capability to teach movement and support from the administration. Teacher training in movement education seemed to be the most needed and perhaps the most effective way to encourage the integration of movement education into the curriculum. Movement education is a valuable way to provide children with experiences that can facilitate learning in many areas of the early childhood curriculum.
Since most children spend the majority of their day in educational settings preschool centers and schools are the most likely place to influence and change children’s physical activity patterns. Given this, as educators we must consider the educational possibilities and the benefits that physical activity can bring to the lives of young children and tailor early childhood curriculums with the goal of promoting lifelong participation in physical activity. The findings also led to recommendations for further research in the areas of early childhood and physical education.
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