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Efficacy of a 7-week dance (RCT) PE curriculum with different teaching pedagogies and levels of cognitive challenge to improve working memory capacity and motor competence in 8–10 years old children

Oppici, L, Rudd, JR, Buszard, T and Spittle, S (2020) Efficacy of a 7-week dance (RCT) PE curriculum with different teaching pedagogies and levels of cognitive challenge to improve working memory capacity and motor competence in 8–10 years old children. Psychology of Sport and Exercise. ISSN 1469-0292

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Abstract

Objectives: This study examined how learning a dance choreography with different teaching pedagogies and different cognitive challenge influenced the development of working memory capacity and motor competence in primary school children.
Design: Randomised-controlled trial.
Methods: Eighty primary school children (8.8 ± 0.7 years old; 61% females) were recruited and randomly assigned to two experimental groups – a high-cognitive and a low-cognitive group – and a control group. The two experimental groups practiced dance for 7 weeks, twice a week, learning a choreography, while the control group participated in the school standard PE curriculum. In the high-cognitive group, the dance teachers limited visual demonstrations and encouraged children to memorise and recall movement sequences to increase the cognitive challenge.
Results: While the pre-to post-test improvements did not statistically differ between experimental groups, the analysis showed that the high-cognitive group statistically improved their working memory capacity (p < 0.01; d = 0.51), while the low-cognitive (p = 0.04; d = 0.48) and control groups did not (p = 0.32; d = 0.17). All three groups improved their motor competence from pre-to post-test, and there was a significant group*time effect (p < 0.01, ηp2 = 0.13) with the high-cognitive group showing larger improvement than the control.
Conclusions: The results of this study provide initial support that dance practice coupled with a high cognitive challenge could improve working memory capacity and motor competence in children; however, the difference between groups was not statistically significant, and future research is necessary to examine the generalization of this finding.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 11 Medical and Health Sciences, 13 Education, 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics > RJ101 Child Health. Child health services
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GV Recreation Leisure > GV561 Sports
Divisions: Sports & Exercise Sciences
Publisher: Elsevier
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 16 Mar 2020 10:55
Last Modified: 16 Mar 2020 11:00
DOI or Identification number: 10.1016/j.psychsport.2020.101675
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/12496

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