Improving enjoyment during physical education lesson in primary school students


  • Rosaria Schembri University of Enna "Kore", Italy
  • Roberto Coppola University of Enna "Kore", Italy
  • Patrizia Tortella University of Bolzen, Italy
  • Francesco Sgrò University of Enna "Kore", Italy



Tactical game model, PACES, Motor competence, Fun, Elementary school


Objective: Assessing the effects of different instructional plans on affective learning aims (i.e., the level of enjoyment) within physical education (PE) classes in elementary school students. Method: The second-grade classes of a primary school were randomly assigned to two different groups (i.e., experimental and control). The control group (n = 29) followed the regular physical education curriculum based on skill practices meanwhile the teacher used a directive style. The experimental group (n = 35) followed a PE plan based on the use of the Tactical Game Model approach to teach handball-based invasion game. The affective learning aims were assessed by means of the Italian version of the PACES scale and it was administered prior to, and at the end of the instructional period. Scale reliability was estimated for each assessment and group. Furthermore, the impact of the plans was estimated and interpreted according to Cohen’s effect size measure. Results: For the control group, the reliability results were between moderate and excellent (i.e., Cronbach’s a ranged from 0.82 to 0.93), while the same results for experimental group were moderate in pre- and post-training assessment (i.e., Cronbach’s a ranged from 0.77 to 0.92). No significant between-group differences were estimated at the start of the study. At the end of the instructional period there were significant and moderate-to-large differences for the positive scores, while significant and low-to-moderate differences for the negative scores. Implications: Current results identified the TGM approach as an effective strategy for supporting fun and motivational PE lessons, since teachers can use these reflections for developing appropriately PE lessons.


Download data is not yet available.


Carraro, A., Young, M. C., & Robazza, C. (2008). A contribution to the validation of the physical activity enjoyment scale in an Italian sample. Social Behavior and Personality: an international journal, 36(7), 911-918.

Cohen, J. (2013). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences. Academic press.

Coppola, R., Pignato, S., Sgrò, F., & Lipoma, M. (2020). Effects of two different physical education teaching approaches on the levels of enjoyment in the Italian primary school students. Journal of Human Sport and Exercises, 15(4), S1251-S1261.

D'Elia, F. (2019)The training of physical education teacher in primary school. Journal of Human Sport and Exercise, 14, pp. S100-S104.

Fischetti, F., Latino, F., Cataldi, S., Greco, G. (2020). Gender differences in body image dissatisfaction: The role of physical education and sport. Journal of Human Sport and Exercise, 15 (2), pp. 241-250.

Frederick, C. M., Morrison, C., & Manning, T. (1996). Motivation to participate, exercise affect, and outcome behaviors toward physical activity. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 82(2), 691-701.

Greco, G., Cataldi, S., Fischetti, F. (2019) . Effectiveness of a short after-school intervention on physical fitness in school-aged children extracurricular multilateral training improves physical fitness in children, Ricerche di Pedagogia e Didattica, 14 (1), pp. 143-164.

Harvey, S., & Jarrett, K. (2014). A review of the game-centred approaches to teaching and coaching literature since 2006. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 19(3), 278-300.

Harveson, A. T., Hannon, J. C., Brusseau, T. A., Podlog, L., McMullen, B., & England, A. (2016). Acute Exercise and Academic Achievement in Elementary School Youth. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 87(S2), A75.

Hashim, H., Grove, R. J., & Whipp, P. (2008). Validating the youth sport enjoyment construct in high school physical education. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 79(2), 183-194.

Kendzierski, D., & DeCarlo, K. J. (1991). Physical activity enjoyment scale: Two validation studies. Journal of sport & exercise psychology, 13(1), 50-64.

Lohbeck, A., Engels, E. S., & Freund, P. A. (2019). Assessing students' enjoyment in physical education: measurement invariance across school tracks and relationships with grades. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 37(8), 1023-1029.

Mitchell, S., Mitchell, S. A., Oslin, J., & Griffin, L. L. (2020). Teaching sport concepts and skills: A tactical games approach. Human Kinetics Publishers.

Motl, R. W., Dishman, R. K., Saunders, R., Dowda, M., Felton, G., & Pate, R. R. (2001). Measuring enjoyment of physical activity in adolescent girls. American journal of preventive medicine, 21(2), 110-117.

Mullen, S. P., Olson, E. A., Phillips, S. M., Szabo, A. N., Wójcicki, T. R., Mailey, E. L., & McAuley, E. (2011). Measuring enjoyment of physical activity in older adults: invariance of the physical activity enjoyment scale (paces) across groups and time. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 8(1), 103.

Scanlan, T. K., Simons, J. P. (1992). The construct of sport enjoyment. In G. C. Roberts (Ed.), Motivation in sport and exercise (pp. 202-203). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

Schembri, R., Quinto, A., Aiello, F., Pignato, S., & Sgrò, F. (2019). The relationship between the practice of physical activity and sport and the level of motor competence in primary school children. Journal of Physical Education and Sport, 19 (Suppl. Issue 5), 1994-1998.

Sgrò, F., Barca, M., Schembri, R., & Lipoma, M. (2020). Assessing the effect of different teaching strategies on students' affective learning outcomes during volleyball lessons. Journal of Physical Education and Sport, 20, 2136-2142.

Sgrò, F., & Lipoma, M. (2015). Can An Exergames Training Program Improve The Jump For Height Skill In Childhood. Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology, Special Issue for INTE 2015, 89-96.

Stone, W. L., & Lemanek, K. L. (1990). Developmental issues in children's self-reports. In A. M. La Greca, Through the eyes of the child: Obtaining self-reports from children and adolescents (p. 18-56). Allyn & Bacon.

Supaporn, S., & Griffin, L. L. (1998). Undergraduate students report their meaning and experiences of having fun in physical education. Physical Educator, 55(2), 57-70.

Tortella, P., & Fumagalli, G. (2017). The effect of teaching methodologies in promoting physical and cognitive development in children. Physical Activity and Educational Achievement: Insights from Exercise Neuroscience, 297.

Tortella, P., Haga, M., Loras, H., Sigmundsson, H., & Fumagalli, G. (2016). Motor skill development in Italian pre-school children induced by structured activities in a specific playground. PLoS One, 11(7), e0160244.


Statistics RUA



How to Cite

Schembri, R., Coppola, R., Tortella, P., & Sgrò, F. (2021). Improving enjoyment during physical education lesson in primary school students. Journal of Human Sport and Exercise, 16(2proc), S735-S742.