The development of trainee primary teachers rationales and philosophies for teaching phyusical education

Por: Ian Pickup e Lawry Price.

Athens 2004: Pre-olympic Congress

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A PE subject specialism strand was introduced to undergraduate Primary Initial Teacher Education provision at Roehampton in 1998. Course design was, and continues to be, based on the presumption that if teachers are charged with responsibility of providing worthwhile, appropriate and enjoyable PE to children of primary school age, then it is imperative that they understand how child growth and development during these years affects learning. This underpinning aim of the course is set alongside the requirements for all trainee teachers specified within Qualifying to Teach ( DfES/TTA 2002) [1] and originally DfEE Circular 4/98. One particular tool for subject specialist trainees to use towards this is the keeping of a Physical Education Log/Journal to record reflective commentaries and accumulate personal readings and annotations. The analysis of log/journals has provided the opportunity to track trainees’ rationales and personal philosophies of teaching Physical Education, compare this phenomenon across consecutive cohorts, inform course design and identify needs for continuing professional development.


The documentary analysis of Log/Journals has been ongoing as students have progressed through their programmes. The Log/Journals are handed in at completion of the course and reviewed critically, in tandem with Career Entry and Development Profiles. [2] An initial immersion into "the details and specifics of the data to discover important categories, dimensions and interrelationships" [3] helped the creation of an observation sheet to record direct quotes and personal reflections gleaned from the documents.


The documentary analysis identified that the personal values of enthusiasm for and knowledge of Physical Education are perceived by the students as desirable qualities to perform the role of subject leader. Most students appear to understand that continuing professional development would be advantageous, although none state specific courses or training that they have identified to attend. A sense of commitment to the cause is derived through a willingness to set up, run and develop extra curricular clubs, although many students have difficulty in applying reflective skills to identify a personal rationale for the subject. A further finding highlights the value of school experience in tying together taught theory with practical application. Results from this year’s graduating cohort will serve to extend these initial findings.

Discussion/ Conclusions

The on going review of students’ log/journals will continue to be a key process within the management of Primary PE subject specialism at Roehampton as the programme continues to grow in maturity. The use of the journals as a tool for tutoring trainees will be continued and developed across the curriculum area, with a particular focus on assisting students to develop reflective skills.


[1]. DfEE/TTA (2002) Qualifying to Teach, London: TTA
[2]. TTA (2003) Career entry and development profile, London: TTA
[3]. Patton, M.Q. (1990) Qualitative Evaluation and Research Methods, Sage: California





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