All physical education teachers most likely aim to facilitate meaningful movement experiences. But when asked how they do that, it is not so easy. After all, meaning and meaningfulness are elusive concepts and we cannot assume that what is meaningful for one participant is meaningful in a similar way for another participant. So, given this complexity, how can teachers intentionally design their lessons to foster meaningfulness?
Learning About Meaningful Physical Education (LAMPE) research project is a longitudinal research and teaching project aimed at discerning meaningful experiences in PE and the ways of preparing future PE teachers to foster these experiences in their work. This exciting work has resulted in several publications (for example, see here and here) and practical initiatives of applying the Meaningful PE framework in schools.
In this second part of our discussion, Drs Déirdre Ní Chróinín and Tim Fletcher share their thoughts on their pioneering work in the LAMPE project. What are the advantages and disadvantages of youth sport compared to PE? Should we aim for breadth or depth of movement experiences if our aim is to foster meaning? How has their work been received and what are the next steps in their project?
More information about the LAMPE project can be found at their website and you can follow the latest updates on Twitter @meaningfulPE.
Dr Déirdre Ní Chróinín is a Senior Lecturer in physical education at Mary Immaculate College in Ireland. Her areas of expertise include meaningful participation in PE, PA and sport; teaching, learning and assessment in primary physical education; initial teacher education in physical education; leadership in school physical education; and qualitative research methods.
Dr Tim Fletcher is an Associate Professor in physical education pedagogy in the Department of Kinesiology at Brock University in Canada. His research interests include pedagogies that promote meaningful PE and youth sport; professional learning in physical education and coach education; occupational socialization; and self-study of professional practice.