A study of the relationships between selected perceptual-motor behaviors and: achievement in reading; achievement in mathematics; classroom behavior; academic self-concept; and academic motivation for first and third grade boys and girls Public Deposited

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  • This study investigated the relationships between selected perceptual-motor behaviors and the following: achievement in reading, achievement in mathematics, academic self-concept, academic motivation and classroom behavior. This investigation was designed to explore the suggestion of Newell Kephart that there is a relationship between perceptual-motor behavior and school success, and to provide useful information for future research projects which could lead to the development of training programs. The subjects for this study consisted of 84 students, 49 girls and 35 boys, from the first and third grades at Lincoln School, Corvallis, Oregon. The following tests were administered to all subjects: the Metropolitan Achievement Test, to assess achievement in reading and mathematics, the Self- Concept and Motivation Inventory, to assess academic self-concept and academic motivation, the Devereux Elementary Behavior Rating Scale, to assess classroom behavior, and six sub-tests from the Purdue Perceptual-Motor Survey, to assess the perceptual-motor behaviors of balance, jumping, angels-in-the-snow, obstacle course, chalkboard and identification of body parts. The data from this study were analysed in the following manner: Using the Pearson product moment coefficient of correlation, "r" values were determined showing the relationship between the scores obtained on the six sub-tests of the Purdue Perceptual-Motor Survey and the scores obtained on the other tests administered; t-tests were run to determine the differences in the "r" values obtained for boys and girls and first and third grade subjects; and tests of significance were run for each correlation coefficient obtained. The t-test analysis revealed no significant difference between the "r" values for boys and the "r" values for girls in any of the comparisons. A significant difference was found between the "r" values for first and third grade subjects in the correlation between perceptual-motor behavior and academic motivation. Comparisons were not made between first and third grade subjects in mathematics and reading correlations because different test batteries were administered and were not comparable. Correlation coefficients were found between first grade reading scores and the following perceptual-motor scores: the total perceptual-motor behavior score p < .001, angels-in-the-snow p < .001, jumping p < .001, balance p < .001, identification of body parts p < .05, and chalkboard p < .10. Correlation coefficients were found between first grade mathematics scores and the following perceptual-motor scores: the total perceptual-motor score p < .001, jumping p < .001, balance p < .001, angels-in-the-snow p < .001 and chalkboard p < .10. Correlation coefficients were found between third grade reading scores and the following perceptual-motor scores: the total perceptual-motor score p < .01, balance p < .05, jumping p < .01, identification of body parts p < .01, obstacle course p < .10 and chalkboard p < .10. Correlation coefficients were found between third grade mathematics scores and the following perceptual-motor scores: the total perceptual-motor score p < .001, balance p < .01, jumping p < .01, identification of body parts p < .01, obstacle course p < .05 and chalkboard p < .05. Correlation coefficients were found between classroom behavior and the following perceptual-motor scores: the total perceptual-motor score p < .01, balance p < .05, jumping p < .10, identification of body parts p < .001, obstacle course p < .10 and chalkboard p < .05. None of the correlation coefficients between perceptual-motor behavior and academic self concept were found to be significant at the significance levels of .10, .05, .01 and .001. The findings for the relationship between academic motivation and perceptual-motor behavior were inconclusive. This study has identified perceptual-motor behaviors which are definitely related to achievement in reading, achievement in mathematics and classroom behavior. These findings are consistent with Kephart's suggestion that perceptual-motor development is related to school success. By identifying the specific perceptual-motor behaviors which are related to school success the findings of this study have provided useful data for the design of experimental research projects and the development of perceptual-motor training programs. Further research is indicated to explore the relationships between self-concept, motivation and perceptual-motor behaviors.
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