Tuesday, December 3, 2019

The Impact of Stability Balls on Student Learning Essays - Learning

The Impact of Stability Balls on Student Learning Introduction When was the last time you used an exercise or stability ball? It was probably in some exercise class or while you were doing exercises at home. For Miss Stephens' second grade class at Northside Elementary School in Palmyra, stability balls are used every day as the students' chairs. When I walked into the field on the first day, I noticed that at every desk sat these little stability balls the perfect size for second graders, instead of normal chairs. When the students came in, they were bouncing away on these stability ball chairs. Now, I have seen classes use stability balls before, but I had never seen them used in a class that I was actually observing. I was so excited that this opportunity presented itself to me for my teacher research project. Since this was the only the second day of school, one of the first things that Miss Stephens did at the beginning of the day was to set the rules and guidelines for the stability ball chairs. She used the acronym STAY to explain the rules for the chairs. S stands for sit calmly on your ball. T stands for treat your ball with respect. A stands for always keep your feet on the floor. Y stands for your ball is a privilege! Miss Stephens made sure that all the students knew how to sit on the ball chairs and how to take care of them. One rule that she also emphasized was no basketball bouncing. She emphasized this rule so that the students would not bounce uncontrollably. She also told the students that if they misused the chairs, they would lose the privilege of using them and have to use a regular chair. That first day was a little hectic, but since then the students have gotten used to the stability ball chairs. This teacher research project focuses on how stability balls impact students academically and behaviorally. I want to know whether or not using stability ball chairs will improve students' academics and behavior and whether or not students believe the ball chairs are beneficial. I will collect data on this in a couple different ways. The first one is just student observations of student behavior with and without therapy balls. The second way I will collect data is by interviewing the students as well as the teacher about their views on the impacts of stability ball chairs. In other words, my research project sets out to answer the following question: How do stability ball chairs impact my student's learning? This is an important topic to study because of the potential benefits to the students. Increased academic performance and better behavior make children more successful in school. If using these stability balls instead of regular chairs is beneficial to my class, imagine how beneficial they would be in all schools. Student performance and behavior could skyrocket. This topic is also important to study because it lets the students have a voice in their education. Through this study they have the opportunity to tell me what they think about the stability ball chairs and whether or not they think that they are beneficial to their own learning. Lastly, it is important for teachers. Finding ways to help the students reach their full potential helps improve teachers' rational. It helps teachers to know that they have positively impacted a student by using strategies to make his learning experience more successful. There are many things that I hope to learn as a result of this research study. The first thing I would like to know is whether or not stability balls actually improve students' academics and behavior. I also want to know the students' and teacher's opinions about how the stability ball chairs impact the classroom. By doing this study, I hope to learn how to take students' opinions into account when implementing strategies that I think will be beneficial. Lastly, I hope to learn the best ways to design and implement a research project in a classroom for when I have my own class. Literature Review There is much in the literature regarding stability ball chairs in the classroom. According to Burgoyne and Ketcham

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