Curriculum matters: Learning science-based fitness knowledge in constructivist physical education

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Ang Chen, Professor (Creator)
Catherine D. Ennis, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:

Abstract: Teaching fitness-related knowledge has become critical in developing children's healthful livingbehavior. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a science-based, constructivistphysical education curriculum on learning fitness knowledge critical to healthful living inelementary school students. The schools (N = 30) were randomly selected from one of the largestschool districts in the United States and randomly assigned to treatment curriculum and controlconditions. Students in third, fourth, and fifth grade (N = 5,717) were pre- and posttested on astandardized knowledge test on exercise principles and benefits in cardiorespiratory health,muscular capacity, and healthful nutrition and body flexibility. The results indicated that childrenin the treatment curriculum condition learned at a faster rate than their counterparts in the controlcondition. The results suggest that the constructivist curriculum is capable of inducing superiorknowledge gain in third-, fourth-, and fifth-grade children.

Additional Information

The Elementary School Journal, 113, 215-229
Language: English
Date: 2012
physical education, constructivist curriculum, Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD), elementary schoolers

Email this document to