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Middle School Teachers' Perceptions of Standing for Instruction

Crimone, Erin (2018) Middle School Teachers' Perceptions of Standing for Instruction. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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This study addressed the problem of middle school students being both off task and sedentary during the school day. Students may spend up to six hours sitting during a middle school day (NCES, 2018). Research showed evidence that sedentary behavior, primarily sitting, negatively affects physical health (Cardon, De Clercq, De Bourdeaudhuij, & Breithecker, 2004) and suggested standing during class might decrease student off-task behavior in a variety of class activities and instructional formats (Godwin, 2014). However, prior research has not addressed how teachers view this intervention.
Accordingly, this study explored the feasibility of an intervention to incorporate standing during instruction. This is the first study to reveal teacher acceptability of standing for instruction.
The study gathered perceptions from seven middle school teachers who asked students to stand a minimum of 15 minutes per class period, a minimum of three days per week for five weeks. Students stood for a variety of class activities and instructional formats including lecture, individual in-class activity, group in-class activity, and game. The study consisted of three conditions: pre-intervention, no standing; standing intervention; and post-intervention, no standing. An on-line survey recorded the teachers’ perceptions of student off-task behavior during all phases.
The findings show teachers believe standing for instruction is not only feasible, but also acceptable. Teacher open-ended responses showed 54% of comments were positive, 12% neutral, and 34% negative. Many teachers chose to continue the standing intervention after the study concluded.
Teacher perceptions of student off-task behavior while standing for instruction varied by instructional format and teacher. The common perception was standing for instruction, especially when students were given the choice, reduced off-task behaviors and increased focus. The study revealed teacher perceptions of students who are typically “fidgety” and off task were more on task and focused during the standing intervention. Findings also show a decrease in hall pass use in most teachers’ classes when students were standing.
The implications of this study suggest that allowing students a choice to stand is a feasible and acceptable intervention strategy. Providing students with the choice to engage in light physical activity by standing may positively impact behavior, focus, and energy.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Crimone, Erinehw10@pitt.eduehw10
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairKerr, Mary Margaret
Committee MemberTrovato, Charlene
Committee MemberRogers, Renee
Date: 24 September 2018
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 23 March 2018
Approval Date: 24 September 2018
Submission Date: 26 April 2018
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 135
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Administrative and Policy Studies
Degree: EdD - Doctor of Education
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: standing for instruction, standing during instruction in middle school, standing desks, sit-stand desks, sedentary behavior, childhood obesity, physical activity, off-task, middle school student behavior, behavior management, sedentary behavior in schools, academic achievement
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2018 17:12
Last Modified: 24 Sep 2018 17:12


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