• Student-designed games: understanding the importance of rules and strategies

      Casey, Ashley (Association for Physical Education, 2012)
    • Students and teacher responses to a unit of student-designed games

      Casey, Ashley; Hastie, Peter A. (2012-05-23)
      Background: Despite the support in primary education that student-designed games enhance student contextualisation of skills and tactics, there has been little support in secondary education, nor any empirical research exploring these claims. This paper attempts to rekindle these beliefs and explores the use of student-designed games in an English secondary school. Aim: To provide a detailed account of classes of secondary students designing their own games, and to investigate their responses to the games-making process. Method: Two classes of boys (aged 14–16) at a school in England participated in the study. Each class was divided into three teacher-selected teams and attended one lesson per week, each lasting 40 minutes, for seven weeks. Lessons were adapted to give students four phases of development: a 2-week library-based planning and wiki construction phase; a 1-week outdoor modification and wiki update phase; three weeks of trials of the games with a wiki refinement phase; and a 1-week game and wiki finalization phase. In this time frame the pupils involved were challenged to design an invasion game that would be played in a subsequent unit. Data consisted of: teacher post-teaching reflections, interviews between a professor-researcher and the on-site participants, observations and analysis of wikis. Data analysis occurred on three levels. The first aspect was immediate and ongoing by the teacher-researcher to meet the ‘on the spot’ learning needs of his students. Secondly, the professor-researcher aided the teacher-researcher in systematic collection, organisation and analyses. Thirdly, peer debriefing occurred in which the research team analysed and critiqued the data during the collection and writing processes. Results: We found that students ‘bought into’ the process of games-making, were afforded an inclusive voice and worked as teams. Furthermore they engaged in immediate searches for innovation which were influenced by popular media, and shared ideas and learning with others to a degree that allowed them to exclude problematic skills. However, there was student frustration induced by watching others failing to properly play these games. Conclusions: We concluded that student-designed games ‘freed’ children to define competition at their own developmental level. This paper shows that by trusting pupils and supporting them to be creative in the games that they play it is possible to gain an insight into the processes by which students apply their knowledge about physical education.
    • Students' conceptions of sport and sport education

      MacPhail, Ann; Kinchin, Gary; Kirk, David (Sage Publications, 2003-10)
      This article explores a class of Grade 5 (age 9 and 10) children’s conceptions of sport during a season of sport education at Forest Gate Primary School. The purpose, following Kirk and Kinchin (this issue), is to examine the extent to which the potential transfer of learning between school and sport as a community of practice may be possible through sport education in school physical education. With reference to student interviews and drawings we report and discuss children’s conceptions of sport, their experiences of sport outside of the school, and their emerging conceptions of sport education in light of these prior understanding and experiences. We conclude that there was an evident level of compatibility between students’ experiences of sport education and their conceptions of sport more broadly.
    • Teacher voice and ownership of curriculum change

      Kirk, David; MacDonald, Doune (Taylor & Francis (Routledge), 2010-10)
    • The teacher-as-researcher and the future survival of physical education

      Casey, Ashley; Kirk, David (Hacettepe University School of Sport Science and Technology, 2010)
      Many have suggested that the industrial model of schooling (i.e. one that concentrates on the year-on-year production of ‘educated’ students) is no longer suitable for a post-industrial education system. With this in mind, and in considering the three possible futures described by Kirk (2010) in his book Physical Education Futures, this paper suggests that teachers hold the key to the future survival of physical ducation. The industrial model of physical education has led to the evolution of an approach to teaching that foregrounds the development of sport-techniques (most especially in team games) at the expensive of understanding and intelligent performance. One possible future (and the one that looks most likely at this time) is what Kirk called ‘more of the same.’ With this response physical education will continue to foreground games and their techniques and ignore the growing dissatisfaction around this approach
    • Teaching games for understanding and situated learning: re-thinking the Bunker-Thorpe model

      Kirk, David; MacPhail, Ann (Human Kinetics, 2002-01)
      Bunker and Thorpe first proposed Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU) in 1982 as an alternative to traditional, technique-led approaches to games teaching and learning. Despite interest from teachers and researchers, there has been no attempt to review the TGfU model. This is an oversight, given the important advances in educational learning theory and ecological approaches to motor control since the early 1980s. The purpose of this paper is to present a new version of the TGfU model that draws on a situated learning perspective. The paper describes the TGfU approach, overviews recent research on TGfU, and outlines a situated learning perspective. This perspective is then applied to rethinking the TGfU model. The intended outcome of the paper is the provision a more robust and sophisticated version of the TGfU model that can inform future directions in the practice of and research on TGfU.
    • Teaching games for understanding in American high-school soccer: a quantitative data analysis using the game performance assessment instrument

      Harvey, Stephen; Cushion, Christopher J.; Wegis, Heidi M.; Massa-Gonzalez, Ada N. (2012-05-23)
      Background: Previous research examining the effectiveness of the Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU) approach has been equivocal. This has been hampered by a dependence on a comparative (i.e., ‘which method is best?’) theoretical framework. An alternative ‘practice-referenced’ framework has the potential to examine the effectiveness of TGfU against anticipated learning outcomes. Furthermore, there has been limited research examining the effects of using the TGfU approach on game play performance in coaching settings. Aims: This study had three purposes/aims: (a) to assess the practice-referenced approach, and consider if this is a viable framework for evaluating the effects of teaching and learning (i.e. performance) with TGfU; (b) to test the robustness of the defensive off-the-ball elements of game performance using the Game Performance Assessment Instrument (GPAI) in a coaching context, with small units of players; (c) to assess how ‘alignment of practice’ contributed to the development of overall game performance and involvement of high-school soccer players. Methods: One varsity (n = 18) and one first-year (n = 16) team of soccer players from a single American high-school boys' soccer programme received eight TGfU coaching sessions (45–60 mins in length). Sessions focused on defensive aspects of off-the-ball game performance (i.e. adjust and cover skills) were delivered by their respective coach, who had been trained to employ the TGfU approach. Changes in game performance were assessed in a modified three vs. three soccer game during baseline (n = 4) and intervention (n = 3) phases of the study. Data were collected on four individual measures (decision making, skill execution, adjust and cover) and two overall measures of game performance (game performance and game involvement) from the GPAI. Changes in game performance measures between baseline and intervention phases of the study were examined using a series of 11 paired-sample t-tests; effect size changes were also calculated. Results: Results revealed significant changes between baseline and intervention phases in appropriate adjusts for both teams and inappropriate covers and overall appropriate game performance for the first-year team. No significant changes between baseline to intervention phases of the study in inappropriate game performance constructs were noted. Conclusions: This study has shown evidence that the practice-referenced approach is an appropriate theoretical framework for evaluating the effects of a TGfU intervention with high-school soccer players, centred on defensive aspects of off-the-ball game performance. Game-situated teaching and learning (i.e. aligned practice) led to faster responses and quicker reactions within the game environment off-the-ball (i.e. to movements of the ball and/or team-mates). Thus, there was an improvement in the numbers of appropriate game responses by both varsity and first-year teams. Finally, the GPAI was found to be sensitive and robust in measuring the changes in defensive off-the-ball game performance made by the two teams of high-school soccer players over the two phases the study.
    • Telomere maintenance genes SIRT1 and XRCC6 impact age-related decline in telomere length but only SIRT1 is associated with human longevity

      Kim, Sangkyu; Bi, Xiuhua; Czarny-Ratajczak, Malwina; Dai, Jianliang; Welsh, David A.; Myers, Leann; Welsch, Michael A.; Cherry, Katie E; Arnold, Jonathan; Poon, Leonard W.; et al. (Springer, 2012-04)
      Leukocyte telomere length is widely considered a biomarker of human age and in many studies indicative of health or disease. We have obtained quantitative estimates of telomere length from blood leukocytes in a population sample, confirming results of previous studies that telomere length significantly decreases with age. Telomere length was also positively associated with several measures of healthy aging, but this relationship was dependent on age. We screened two genes known to be involved in telomere maintenance for association with the age-related decline in telomere length observed in our population to identify candidate longevity-associated genes. A single-nucleotide polymorphism located in the SIRT1 gene and another in the 3' flanking region of XRCC6 had significant effects on telomere length. At each bi-allelic locus, the minor variant was associated with longer telomeres, though the mode of inheritance fitting best differed between the two genes. No statistical interaction was detected for telomere length between the SIRT1 and XRCC6 variants or between these polymorphisms and age. The SIRT1 locus was significantly associated with longevity (P < 0.003). The frequency of the minor allele was higher in long-lived cases than in young controls, which coincides with the protective role of the minor variant for telomere length. In contrast, the XRCC6 variant was not associated with longevity. Furthermore, it did not affect the association of SIRT1 with exceptional survival. The association of the same variant of SIRT1 with longevity was near significant (P < 0.07) in a second population. These results suggest a potential role of SIRT1 in linking telomere length and longevity. Given the differences between this gene and XRCC6, they point to the distinct impact that alternate pathways of telomere maintenance may have on aging and exceptional survival.
    • Throwing and catching as relational skills in game play: situated learning in a modified game unit

      MacPhail, Ann; Kirk, David; Griffin, Linda; Leeds Metropolitan University (Human Kinetics, 2008-01)
      In this article, we were interested in how young people learn to play games within a tactical games model (TGM) approach (Griffin, Oslin, & Mitchell, 1997) in terms of the physical-perceptual and social-interactive dimensions of situativity. Kirk and MacPhail’s (2002) development of the Bunker-Thorpe TGfU model was used to conceptualize the nature of situated learning in the context of learning to play an invasion game as part of a school physical education program. An entire class of 29 Year-5 students (ages 9–10 years) participated in a 12-lesson unit on an invasion game, involving two 40-min lessons per week for 6 weeks. Written narrative descriptions of videotaped game play formed the primary data source for the principal analysis of learning progression. We examined the physical-perceptual and social-interactive dimensions of situated learning (Kirk, Brooker, & Braiuka, 2000) to explore the complex ways that students learn skills. Findings demonstrate that for players who are in the early stages of learning a ball game, two elementary, or fundamental, skills of invasion game play—throwing and catching a ball—are complex, relational, and interdependent.
    • Toward the development of a pedagogical model for health-based physical education

      Haerens, Leen; Kirk, David; Cardon, Greet; De Bourdeaudhuij, Ilse (2010)
      The purpose of this advocacy paper is to make a case for the development of a pedagogical model for Health-Based Physical Education (HBPE) drawing on Jewett, Bain and Ennis's (1995) and Metzler's (2005) ground-breaking work on models-based practice in physical education. A selective review of what has been learnt about HBPE was made to be able to define the central theme for the model as ‘pupils valuing a physically active life, so that they learn to value and practice appropriate physical activities that enhance health and wellbeing for the rest of their lives.’ This theme requires that teachers' beliefs are oriented toward selfactualization and social reconstruction. It also suggests that the affective domain (valuing physical active) is prominent in planning for learning. The discussion focuses on identified tensions related to the central theme and its associated value orientations and learning domain priorities. A stepwise research agenda for progressively developing the model through implementation by teachers in different contexts is proposed.
    • Trading places: from physical education teachers to teacher educators

      Casey, Ashley; Fletcher, Tim (Human Kinetics, 2012)
      Recently, there has been an increase in research on becoming teacher educators, yet little is known about becoming physical education teacher educators (PETE). Responding to concerns about the current state of doctoral PETE programs and inadequate preparation of novice teacher educators, this paper explores our transition from high school teaching to university-based PETE. Employing self-study methodologies we used ourselves as data gathering tools to improve our understandings of self and practice. Our analysis showed that we struggled with the transition from teacher to teacher educator, primarily in navigating the different pedagogies required in teacher education. Based on our high school and PETE experiences, we drew on different sources to shape our respective pedagogies of teacher education. Future PETEs may benefit from structured learning about teaching teachers where they can discover and explore teacher education theory and practice, or be provided with opportunities to observe experienced colleagues and engage in discussion about PETE programming and practice with mentors.
    • The triglyceride to high-density lipoprotein ratio identifies children who may be at risk of developing cardiometabolic disease

      Bailey, Daniel Paul; Savory, Louise A.; Denton, Sarah J.; Davies, Ben Rhys; Kerr, Catherine J.; University of Bedfordshire; Newcastle University; Oxford Brookes University; University of Bedfordshire; Newcastle University; et al. (Wiley, 2014-08)
      Aim: It is important to develop simple, reliable methods to identify high-risk individuals who may benefit from intervention. This study investigated the association between the triglyceride to high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (TG/HDL) ratio and cardiometabolic risk, cardiorespiratory fitness and physical activity in children. Methods: Anthropometric, biochemical parameters, cardiorespiratory fitness and accelerometry determined physical activity were assessed in 155 children (80 girls) from 10 to 14 years of age from Bedfordshire, UK. Participants were grouped into high and low TG/HDL ratio groups, according to published thresholds. MANCOVA and logistic regression were used in the analysis. Results: Cardiometabolic risk factor levels were significantly higher in participants with a high TG/HDL ratio (p < 0.05). The odds of having high waist circumference (OR = 13.99; 95% CI 2.93, 69.25), elevated systolic blood pressure (5.27; 1.39, 20.01), high non-HDL cholesterol (19.47; 4.42, 85.81) and ≥2 cardiometabolic risk factors (15.32; 3.10, 75.79) were higher in participants with a high TG/HDL ratio. The TG/HDL ratio values were significantly lower in those with high cardiorespiratory fitness (p = 0.01), but there was no association with physical activity. Conclusion: These findings support the use of the TG/HDL ratio to identify children with cardiometabolic risk factors who may be at risk of developing cardiometabolic disease.
    • Using digital technology to enhance student engagement in physical education

      Casey, Ashley; Jones, Benjamin (Taylor and Francis, 2011)
      This paper explored the use of video technology as an aid to student engagement in physical education. Working in a comprehensive high school in Australia with disaffected students, the study used the New South Wales Quality Teaching Program as a basis for assessing the effectiveness of video technology in enhancing students' engagement in Physical Education lessons aimed at facilitating deeper understanding of throwing and catching. The results highlighted the effectiveness of video technology in enhancing engagement and subsequently suggest that such a degree of commitment helped students to develop understanding beyond technical replication and towards rational and reasoned student investigations around their learning. Additionally, it helped students to feel less marginalised and enabled them to be more engaged in their learning.
    • Using social media in physical education

      Casey, Ashley (Association for Physical Education, 2012)
    • Using the jigsaw classroom to facilitate student-designed games

      Hastie, Peter A.; Casey, Ashley (Association for Physical Education, 2010)
    • Using the TGfU tactical hierarchy to enhance students understanding of game play : expanding the target games category

      Méndez-Giménez, Antonio; Fernández, Río J.; Casey, Ashley (Universidad Católica San Antonio de Murcia (UCAM), 2012)
      This article reviews the structural and functional elements of a group of activities denominated moving target games, and promotes its inclusion in the Teaching Games for Understanding framework as a new game category. It represents an attempt to enlarge Almond’s taxonomy (1986) to make the transition from one group to another smoother. The basic idea is to modify the structural elements of games to make them developmentally appropriate. Self-made equipment is also introduced as a tool to enhance the educational possibilities of these games. It is easy to make, it reduces the risk of causing damage to an opponent, and it gives students the opportunity to invent games. Finally, the article also tries to show how this approach can be implemented in schools.
    • Variation in basal heat shock protein 70 is correlated to core temperature in human subjects.

      Sandström, Marie E.; Madden, Leigh A.; Taylor, Lee; Siegler, Jason C.; Lovell, Ric J.; Midgley, Adrian W.; McNaughton, Lars R. (Springer, 2009-07)
      Heat shock proteins are highly conserved proteins and play an important chaperone role in aiding the folding of nascent proteins within cells. The heat shock protein response to various stressors, both in vitro and in vivo, is well characterised. However, basal levels of heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) have not previously been investigated. Monocyte-expressed Hsp70 was determined every 4 h, over a 24 h time period, in 17 healthy male subjects (177 +/- 6.4 cm, 75.7 +/- 10.9 kg, 19.8 +/- 4.3 years) within a temperature and activity controlled environment. Core temperature was measured at 5-min intervals during the 24 h period. Hsp70 showed significant diurnal variation (F = 7.4; p < 0.001), demonstrating peaks at 0900 and 2100 hours, and a nadir at 05.00. Core temperature followed a similar temporal trend (range = 35.96-38.10 degrees C) and was significantly correlated with Hsp70 expression (r(s) = 0.44; p < 0.001). These findings suggest a high responsiveness of Hsp70 expression in monocytes to slight variations in core temperature.