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Educational value and models-based practice in physical education

Kirk, D. (2013) Educational value and models-based practice in physical education. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 45 (9). pp. 973-986. ISSN 0013-1857

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Abstract

A models-based approach has been advocated as a means of overcoming the serious limitations of the traditional approach to physical education. One of the difficulties with this approach is that physical educators have sought to use it to achieve diverse and sometimes competing educational benefits, and these wide-ranging aspirations are rarely if ever achieved. Models-based practice offers a possible resolution to these problems by limiting the range of learning outcomes, subject matter and teaching strategies appropriate to each pedagogical model and thus the arguments that can be used for educational value. In this article, two examples are provided to support a case for educational value. This case is built on an examination of one established pedagogical model, Sport Education, which is informed by a perspective on ethics. Next, I consider Physical Literacy which, I suggest, is an existentialist philosophical perspective that could form the basis of a new pedagogical model. It is argued, in conclusion, that a models-based approach along with a reconstructed notion of educational value may offer a possible future for physical education that is well grounded in various philosophical arguments and the means to facilitate a wide range of diverse individual and social educational ‘goods’.