The effects of three knowledge interventions on novice volunteer tutors' teaching performance with children with developmental disabilities in a motor development lab setting Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/s7526g02j

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  • According to Block (1999), the greatest problem with inclusion in physical education is the lack of personnel support. Most help comes in the form of teacher assistants such as peer-tutors and paraprofessional who receive very little, if any, direction from the general physical education teacher. However, what remains unknown are the knowledge and teaching behaviors these assistants possess in order to engage children with developmental disabilities within the physical activity setting. The purpose of this investigation was two fold: a) To determine the impact an training consisting of knowledge development and practice has on the interactions of volunteer tutors working with children with developmental disabilities, and b) To determine if the order of presenting training content targeting specific dimensions of teacher knowledge has a differential effect on the teaching performance of the same volunteer tutors. Participants for this study were seven volunteer tutors between the ages of 18-23 each paired with a high functioning child (5-14 yrs.) with a development disability. Volunteer tutors engaged in weekly 30 minute training sessions throughout the academic year, focusing on the development of content knowledge (CK), pedagogical knowledge (PK), and pedagogical content knowledge (PCK). A hybrid research design was implemented combining a basic single-subject reversal design with an Alternate Control Treatment Group Research Design. Data collection consisted of event recording of data as captured via audio and videotaped recordings of the volunteer's behavior during a gym-based activity session covering the physical skills of throwing, catching, kicking, and striking an object. Findings regarding the order of the training sessions suggest pedagogical knowledge followed by content knowledge had some encouraging results, but were not as effective as just focusing on PCK. Teachers looking to incorporate peer volunteers into the physical activity setting to assist children with developmental disabilities may consider implementing short training sessions that focus on pedagogical content knowledge.
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