Fitting the Jigsaw Together: The Body-school-society Nexus and Children's Understanding of Body Pedagogies
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Introduction Increasing attention from many agencies on children’s health, a proliferation of health interventions in schools and a growing body of knowledge about body pedagogies has prompted research studies to be conducted from sociological and particularly, socio-critical perspectives. This presentation will consider the impact on children’s understanding of health through examining how health knowledge is prescribed in one Aotearoa /New Zealand primary school. Discussion will focus on how teachers re-contextualise this knowledge using social-cultural constructs such as the interrelationship between the body, school and society. The presentation reports findings from an ethnographic study that explored how primary school aged children came to understand and see their bodies. The study focused on children’s understanding and perceptions of body pedagogies through their experience of being involved in a school wide focus on health as well as an intervention called Healthy Homework (HH). HH was an intervention that integrated a school curriculum and an eight week homework programme that aimed to teach children to be active and eat well at home, with both children and parents/caregivers being encouraged to eat nutritious food and lead an active lifestyle.