• Implementing physically active learning: Future directions for research, policy, and practice

      Daly-Smith, Andrew; Quarmby, T.; Archbold, V.S.J.; Routen, A.C.; Morris, J.L.; Gammon, C.; Bartholomew, J.B.; Resaland, G.K.; Llewellyn, B.; Allman, R.; et al. (2020-01)
      To identify co-produced multi-stakeholder perspectives important for successful widespread physically active learning (PAL) adoption and implementation. A total of 35 stakeholders (policymakers n = 9; commercial education sector, n = 8; teachers, n = 3; researchers, n = 15) attended a design thinking PAL workshop. Participants formed 5 multi-disciplinary groups with at least 1 representative from each stakeholder group. Each group, facilitated by a researcher, undertook 2 tasks: (1) using Post-it Notes, the following question was answered: within the school day, what are the opportunities for learning combined with movement? and (2) structured as a washing-line task, the following question was answered: how can we establish PAL as the norm? All discussions were audio-recorded and transcribed. Inductive analyses were conducted by 4 authors. After the analyses were complete, the main themes and subthemes were assigned to 4 predetermined categories: (1) PAL design and implementation, (2) priorities for practice, (3) priorities for policy, and (4) priorities for research. The following were the main themes for PAL implementation: opportunities for PAL within the school day, delivery environments, learning approaches, and the intensity of PAL. The main themes for the priorities for practice included teacher confidence and competence, resources to support delivery, and community of practice. The main themes for the policy for priorities included self-governance, the Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services, and Skill, policy investment in initial teacher training, and curriculum reform. The main themes for the research priorities included establishing a strong evidence base, school-based PAL implementation, and a whole-systems approach. The present study is the first to identify PAL implementation factors using a combined multi-stakeholder perspective. To achieve wider PAL adoption and implementation, future interventions should be evidence based and address implementation factors at the classroom level (e.g., approaches and delivery environments), school level (e.g., communities of practice), and policy level (e.g., initial teacher training).
    • Introducing physically active lessons in UK secondary schools: feasibility study and pilot cluster-randomised controlled trial

      Gammon, C.; Morton, K.; Atkin, A.; Corder, K.; Daly-Smith, Andrew; Quarmby, T.; Suhrcke, M.; Turner, D.; van Sluijs, E. (2019-05)
      Assess feasibility, acceptability and costs of delivering a physically active lessons (PAL) training programme to secondary school teachers and explore preliminary effectiveness for reducing pupils' sedentary time. Secondary schools in East England; one school participated in a pre-post feasibility study, two in a pilot cluster-randomised controlled trial. In the pilot trial, blinding to group assignment was not possible. Across studies, 321 randomly selected students (51% male; mean age: 12.9 years), 78 teachers (35% male) and 2 assistant head teachers enrolled; 296 (92%) students, 69 (88%) teachers and 2 assistant head teachers completed the studies. PAL training was delivered to teachers over two after-school sessions. Teachers were made aware of how to integrate movement into lessons; strategies included students collecting data from the environment for class activities and completing activities posted on classroom walls, instead of sitting at desks. Quantitative and qualitative data were collected to assess feasibility and acceptability of PAL training and delivery. Outcomes were assessed at baseline and ~8 weeks post-training; measures included accelerometer-assessed activity, self-reported well-being and observations of time-on-task. Process evaluation was conducted at follow-up. In the feasibility study, teachers reported good acceptability of PAL training and mixed experiences of delivering PAL. In the pilot study, teachers' acceptability of training was lower and teachers identified aspects of the training in need of review, including the outdoor PAL training and learning challenge of PAL strategies. In both studies, students and assistant head teachers reported good acceptability of the intervention. Preliminary effectiveness for reducing students' sedentary time was not demonstrated in either study. No evidence of preliminary effectiveness on the primary outcome and mixed reports of teachers' acceptability of PAL training suggest the need to review the training. The results do not support continuation of research with the current intervention. ISRCTN38409550.