“Sometimes we get stuck in our ruts”: exploring the utility of a mentorship program for daily physical activity delivery among elementary school teachers
Master of Science
SubjectDaily Physical Activity (DPA) policy
Physical and health education (Ontario)
Mentorship-based PE and PA programs in schools
MetadataShow full item record
Background: The Daily Physical Activity (DPA) policy in Ontario states that elementary students should receive at least 20 minutes of physical activity (PA) daily during instructional time. Yet, studies show that this goal is rarely achieved. Given the pressures teachers experience regarding the coverage of academic curricula, coupled with low confidence and training for delivering DPA, innovative strategies to promote PA-related teaching skills are needed. In the context of Self-Determination Theory (SDT), the satisfaction of a teacher’s Basic Psychological Needs (BPN; autonomy, competence, relatedness) has been deemed valuable for implementing and sustaining school-based PA-programs. University students studying kinesiology are inherently equipped to assist with the delivery of PA initiatives. In light of the known benefits of mentorship models applied in educational contexts, combined with the utility of interventions grounded in theory, a collaborative kinesiology student-teacher-based program could be a viable health promotion strategy to combat low (D)PA rates. To date, no studies exploring the BPN in the context of a mentorship-based DPA program exist. Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the utility of a 6-week mentorship program designed to assist early career teachers with DPA delivery using Ontario Physical and Health Education Association (OPHEA) curricula. Administered by a MSc kinesiology student, this involved assessing: I) the participants’ DPA engagement, practices and program-based experiences through the lens of SDT’s BPN; II) the utility of the 6-week program from structural, logistical, and experiential perspectives; and III) participants’ recommendations for future DPA mentorship studies.