A descriptive analysis of teacher behavior and interaction patterns of selected elementary physical education specialists.

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Buckett, Bonnie-jean
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Middle Tennessee State University
The purpose of this study was to systematically observe, using the Cheffer's Adaptation of Flanders Interaction Analysis System (CAFIAS), and describe the teacher behavior and interaction patterns of 14 selected elementary physical education specialists teaching first-, third-, and fifth-grade classes. Each instructor was observed twice in the gymnasium environment with approximately three weeks separating the observations. A descriptive analysis of the specialists as a group and as individuals was summarized. A 2 x 2 x 3 univariant MANOVA was used to analyze the significant differences that occurred between the grade level, gender of the instructor, class size, and the 27 parameters of CAFIAS. A traditional teaching style, consisting of teacher information-giving followed by predictable student responses and game-playing activities, dominated the observed physical education environments. The teachers seemed to have developed a comfortable teaching style and, with minimal differences, habitually displayed the same teacher behavior regardless of the grade level of the students. Significant differences were determined to exist when comparing teacher gender and class size. The male specialists tolerated more confusion, allowed more verbal student contribution, and employed more nonverbal teacher questions, while the female specialists utilized more nonverbal teacher contribution, had more content emphasis, and displayed more nonverbal acceptance and praise. In smaller classes more confusion, student verbalization, verbal teacher acceptance and praise, content emphasis, and nonverbal teacher-suggested pupil initiation occurred. In the larger classes (over 40 students) more silence, nonverbal student contribution, total student-suggested pupil initiation, nonverbal emphasis, and the use of the environment as the teaching agent occurred.