This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Capabilities of Primary Students Participating in a Sport Education Physical Education Unit




Layne, Todd

Type of Degree





Research has supported the use of Sport Education in physical education. The majority of studies have focused on its use in elementary, secondary, and higher education. Little research has been completed in regards to the use and effectiveness of Sport Education in the primary grades. This research examined a fourth grade class using Sport Education for the first time. Therefore, the purposes of this investigation were to (1) to determine if students can work independently of the teacher, (2) to determine if fourth graders can play a modified game without constant intervention from the teacher, (3) to determine if students’ can officiate games successfully, and (4) to determine if students’ can manage the other organizational tasks associated with the season. The participants in this study were two fourth grade classrooms. Each lesson consisted of coding the tasks presented by the teacher. Included in the coding was type of task, the explicitness of the task, student compliance, skill opportunities and success, referee involvement and success, and duration of the task. Results indicated that students can work independent of the teacher during a Sport Education season. Tasks transitioned from explicit to implicit and, irrespective of the explicitness of task, compliance was high. There was no drop in management time due to the amount of time needed to prepare for the culminating event, which is an important element of Sport Education. Students experienced an increase in skill and referee success during the post-season. Furthermore, during this time students became more involved as referees. Finally, students displayed perfect compliance during all transitional tasks. Together, these results indicate positive student responses to their initial experience with Sport Education and suggest that it can potentially enhance the learning experience of all students.