Online Program

Promoting science performance during physical activity among hispanic children: A pilot study

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Zi Yan, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.Ed., Department of Health Sciences, Merrimack College, North Andover, MA
Kevin Finn, EdD, ATC, CSCS, Department of Health Sciences, Merrimack College, North Andover, MA
Kyle McInnis, Sc.D., FACSM, Department of Health Sciences, Merrimack College, North Andover, MA
Hispanic children are more sedentary and have poorer science performance compared to children of other ethnic backgrounds. This project assessed a pilot program (Active Science) embedding physical activity into academic lessons in an after-school program in a Hispanic community. Methods: Participants were 18 Hispanic boys and girls (3th/4th graders) enrolled in an economically disadvantaged after-school program. The curriculum included a variety of activities (e.g., dance, games, sports) for 30 minutes (2 times/week) over a six-week period. Children wore activity monitors and recorded their physical activity data after each session using an interactive website developed by the project team. The Active Science (n=8) group then participated in a series of age and grade appropriate academic lessons that involved using their activity data (e.g., steps, distance, and calories) to explore and reinforce important concepts in science, math, and technology. The Active Only group (n=10) participated in physical activity component but not in the science lessons. Results. For the Active Only group, the science scores increased from M= 11.43 (SD=4.8) to M= 15.14 (SD =3.0), Cohen'd =1.00; For the Active Science group, the science scores increased from M= 12.00 (SD =4.1) to M= 18.33 (SD =5.4), Cohen'd =1.44. 2(time)*2(group) repeated ANOVA test showed significant time effect, F(11, 1)=30, p<.001. Group effect was not significant, F (11, 1)=30, p>.05. Physical activity levels (steps/hour) for both groups significantly increased from 1402 (SD=699.7) to 3540 (SD =1002.8), t(16)=9.1, p<.001. Conclusion. 6-weeks of the Active Science intervention increased science performance and physical activity participation among Hispanic children.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Design an after-school program promoting science performance during physical activity participation among Hispanic children

Keyword(s): Physical Activity, Hispanic Youth

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been trained in the fields of public health and exercise science. I have received research awards including "OAHPERD 2010 The Graduate Student Scholarship" and "American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD) Research Consortium 2011 Graduate Student Award Finalist." I presented my research in the national conferences every year since 2007. I have 5 publications in the peer-reviewed journals in the last 5 years and 3 manuscripts are currently in press.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.