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To Include The Invisible: An Interview Study Of Inclusive Physical Education And Pupils With Neurodevelopmental Disorders (NDD) And Their Peers
(RCIW)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6662-6725
2018 (English)In: / [ed] EERA / ECER, 2018Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Including the invisible – a study of what PE practice becomes in classes in which pupils with neurodevelopmental disorders are integrated

Abstract Background: Previous research on inclusive physical education (PE) has often focused on pupils with visible physical disabilities and how to facilitate and adapt PE so that they can play an active role in the educational situation. Many lessons about inclusion have emerged from this important field. However, less is known about more ‘invisible’ variations. In Sweden, for example, many pupils who are diagnosed with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD), such as ADHD and Autism, are integrated into mainstream classes. These pupils are often more sensitive to demands and stressful situations and struggle to decode social interactions. When it comes to lessons in PE, little is known about how pupils with NDD perceive the educational situation and what they need so that PE is successful for them. Purpose: The purpose of this study is to investigate what PE practice becomes in classes in which pupils with NDD are integrated. John Dewey’s transactional perspective is applied and the research question is: What are the inclusion and exclusion processes in classes in which pupils with NDD are integrated? Methods: Data generation consisted of 9 field observations and 13 individual interviews with pupils (aged 10-11) in three classes in two different schools in one municipality. The municipality was awarded a grant by the Swedish authorities to work towards the creation of a more favourable school situation for pupils with NDD. The students who were diagnosed as having NDD were not known in advance. The sample also consisted of pupils without a diagnosis and one pupil with NDD was not sampled. This was a conscious choice based on an ambition to study these pupils at a group level together with peers. Findings: The study identified that PE practices include processes of inclusion and exclusion. These practices are: (i) to organise, (i) to cooperate, (ii) to sweat and (iii) to win. ‘To organise’ is a comprehensive practice that is transactionally identified and is foregrounded by teachers’ actions, while the other three are embedded in the practice ‘to organise’, which has pupils’ actions in the foreground. Within each practice, processes of inclusion and exclusion are described using excerpts from the pupils own voices. Conclusion: The study reveals how some inclusive practices that are implemented to support some pupils with NDD exclude other pupils with or without NDD. Accordingly, working in an integrated way can be both inclusive and exclusive. It would seem that successful inclusive education in PE is as much about group dynamics as about different diagnoses of pupils. Applying a pupil’s perspective in further research will be crucial if we want to learn more about the practical and emotional implications of inclusive education in PE. Keywords: neurodevelopmental disorders, physical education, inclusion processes, exclusion processes, primary school

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018.
National Category
Pedagogy
Research subject
Teacher Education and Education Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-22648OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-22648DiVA, id: diva2:1387933
Conference
ECER 2018, Bolzano, Italy, September 4-7, 2018.
Available from: 2020-01-23 Created: 2020-01-23 Last updated: 2020-02-04Bibliographically approved

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Thoren, Anna

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