18 SES 07, Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment in Physical Education: A Futuristic View
The intention of this study is to explore young people’s physical activity practice today. Our previous research has shown that the current norms of youth culture involve a dominating social arena characterized by parties and alcohol (Thing & Ottesen, 2013). Moreover, these norms and values doesn’t fit very well with living a healthy and physically active life, and therefore the physically active body, which is often assigned with positive value in the western world, can have lower status among young people and can in some contexts contribute to a feeling of being outsiders in the general youth culture (Nielsen, 2015; Nielsen, Ottesen, & Thing, 2016). This paper outlines a further exploration of this contradiction by studying Physical Education (PE) in the Danish high school in order to understand what is at stake between young people when they use their body in a physical activity context? Both national (Laub, 2013; Pilgaard & Rask, 2016) and international research (Allender, Cowburn, & Foster, 2006; Salmon, Booth, Phongsavan, Murphy, & Timperio, 2007) show that young people drop out of organized sport and physical activity, and that young people exercise too little in general. At the same time the curriculum for PE in high school states the subject must motivate the students to a physically active lifestyle (Undervisningsministeriet, 2013). This study explores this paradox further. Green (2014) problematizes the fact that we take the connection between PE and lifelong participation in physical activity for granted and there is lack in research that supports this assumption. Girls especially can feel excluded in PE. However, girls-only PE has shown a tendency to actually create more differentiated relations among girls. Some reinforcing their social status and others becoming more marginalised (Hills, 2007). We wish to challenge the traditional understanding of physical education, which is related to physical capacity and skills, and examine whether there may be something more at stake in relation to motivate and retain young people in a more physically active life. The primary question that this study will try to answer is:
How do relations and power struggles among young people in physical education in high schools influence on their sporting practice and their desire be physically active?
We draw on Norbert Elias’ figurational sociology (Elias, 1978, 1994 (1939)). More specifically, his notion on power relations between established and outsider groups, which characterize all smaller communities (Elias & Scotson, 1994 ). A figuration is formed by the interdependencies between the people who inhabit it, and it is not possible to comprehend individual I-identities within a figuration without understanding the complex web of social power relations in the form of we- and they-identities (Evans & Crust, 2014). Consequently, within figurations the actions of individuals are intertwined with each other, which cause unintended consequences and changes over time (Elias, 2001). In this study we explore how power relations appear and are negotiated between young people based on PE lessons in the Danish high school to understand what is at stake when it comes to young people’s sporting practice and their desire be physically active.
Allender, S., Cowburn, G., & Foster, C. (2006). Understanding participation in sport and physical activity among children and adults: a review of qualitative studies. Health education research, 21(6), 826-835. doi:10.1093/her/cyl063 Elias, N. (1978). What is sociology? : London, Hutchinson. Elias, N. (1994 (1939)). The civilizing proces: Oxford Blackwell. Elias, N. (2001). The Society of Individuals. New York: The Continuum International Publishing Group. Elias, N., & Scotson, J. L. (1994 ). The Established and the Outsiders. London: SAGE. Evans, A. B., & Crust, L. (2014). ‘Some of these people aren’t as fit as us …’: experiencing the ageing, physically active body in cardiac rehabilitation. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 7(1), 1-24. doi:10.1080/2159676x.2014.908945 Green, K. (2014). Mission impossible? Reflecting upon the relationship between physical education, youth sport and lifelong participation. Sport, Education and Society, 19(4), 357-375. doi:10.1080/13573322.2012.683781 Halkier, B. (2009). Fokusgrupper (2. ed.). Frederiksberg: Samfundslitteratur. Hastrup, K. (2010). Feltarbejde. In S. Brinkmann & L. Tanggaard (Eds.), Kvalitative metoder - en grundbog. København: Hans Reitzels Forlag. Hills, L. (2007). Friendship, physicality, and physical education: an exploration of the social and embodied dynamics of girls’ physical education experiences. Sport, Education and Society, 12(3), 317-336. doi:10.1080/13573320701464275 Laub, T. B. (2013). Danskernes motions- og sportsvaner 2011. Retrieved from København: Morgan, D. L. (1997). Focus groups as qualitative research (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications. Nielsen, S. F. (2015). Gymnasieskolen som Innovativt Sundhedslaboratorium - Et processtudie om idræt og demokrati i en ungdomskultur. (Ph.D.), University of Copenhagen, København. Nielsen, S. F., Ottesen, L., & Thing, L. F. (2016). Established and Outsider Relations among Students Involved in a Health Promotion Intervention in a Danish High School. Historial Social Research, 41(3), 101-119. Pilgaard, M., & Rask, S. (2016). Danskernes motions og sportsvaner 2016. Retrieved from København: Salmon, J., Booth, M. L., Phongsavan, P., Murphy, N., & Timperio, A. (2007). Promoting physical activity participation among children and adolescents. Epidemiologic reviews, 29, 144-159. doi:10.1093/epirev/mxm010 Seippel, Ø., Sisjord, M. K., & Strandbu, Å. (2016). Ungdom og Idrett. Oslo: Cappelen Damm. Thing, L. F., & Ottesen, L. S. (2013). Young people's perspectives on health, risks and physical activity in a Danish secondary school. Health, Risk & Society, 15(5), 463-477. doi:10.1080/13698575.2013.802294 Undervisningsministeriet. (2013). Bekendtgørelse om uddannelsen til studentereksamen (stx-bekendtgørelsen). Retrieved from http://www.uvm.dk/
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