Moving physical activity beyond the school classroom: a social-ecological insight for teachers of the facilitators and barriers to students' non-curricular physical activity
Hyndman, B, Telford, A, Benson, AC & Finch, CF 2012, 'Moving physical activity beyond the school classroom: a social-ecological insight for teachers of the facilitators and barriers to students' non-curricular physical activity', The Australian Journal of Teacher Education, vol. 37, no. 2.
Non-curricular avenues such as active play during school breaks have been established as a major source for children’s physical and cognitive development, yet there is little information for teachers on the influences affecting primary and secondary school students’ non-curricular physical activity. During this study focus groups and drawing were used to explore the broader influences on primary (n=47) and secondary (n=29) school students’ physical activity behaviour beyond the classroom. Barriers and facilitators to children’s physical activity were categorised using a multi-level social-ecological framework incorporating intrapersonal, interpersonal, physical environment and policy factors. Based on the drawings, comparisons between students’ existing play spaces and their perception of their ideal play space were made. Additionally, students depicted what features within a play space would encourage them to be active. The findings of the study indicate secondary school play spaces may need to incorporate more features to facilitate physical activity. The barriers and facilitators identified in this study provide information for teachers and school decision makers to consider when targeting children’s physical activity beyond school classrooms.