Over the next few weeks, I'll present my research into the effective use of ICT in HPE. It will consider all current research and literature and explore issues surrounding the integration of ICT in Physical Education, and identify examples of current effective practice by physical educators.
In recent years, the rapid growth of new technologies has aided educators in the quest for improved teaching and learning methods. This influx of technology in the lives of the current “iGeneration” presents a unique set of learning characteristics (Rosen, 2011). According to Mears (as cited in Sanders & Witherspoon, 2012), “educators need to examine current educational policies and instructional delivery methods to develop an environment that meets the needs of these ‘tech savvy’ students”. The use of ICT offers a potential solution to enhance learning and engagement to learners in all subjects, including Physical Education (Collins, 2011). It is essential that physical educators understand the influences ICT has, and effectively integrate the technologies to enhance the performance and engagement of their students.
In average American household, 88% of children have a video game console. It has been identified as one of the causes of decreased physical activity and increased sedentary behaviour. (Hersey & Jordan as cited in Sanders & Witherspoon, 2012). A modern form of technology, active gaming, has emerged that allows participants to engage in gaming but also requires them to be physically active. This new genre of physical activity has been creating by the development in gaming technologies such as the Nintendo Wii, and Xbox Connect. It is implied that active gaming motivates children to be more active because the activities are fun and enjoyable. (Witherspoon as cited in Sanders & Witherspoon, 2012). The American Heart Association (2010) has also announced their support in stating “active gaming has the potential to positively benefit participants.”
A common problem when dealing with the use of video games in PE is the teacher having only one gaming console and students must wait in line to play. For example, in Dance Dance Revolution (Konami, 2009), students can learn dance movements from the game, however only two dance pads could be connected to a single console at a time. The newer version allow up to 42 dance pads to be connected by the cost is immense. A possible solution could be for teachers to use practice pads and rotate students between playing the game and practicing on the practice pads. Another possible solution is to use a station & circuit format where the technology is one station of the circuit. This allows all students to utilise the technology without reducing activity levels or having a large amount of wait time (Mears as cited in Sanders & Witherspoon, 2012).