Celebrity Football Players as Teacher’s Aides to Enhance the Learning of Children Displaying Challenging Behaviours

By Danuta Chessor, Emilee Gilbert, Janette Perz and Jane M. Ussher.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In mainstream classrooms, children with challenging behaviours often disrupt their own learning and the learning of other students. The special needs of these students are better met in the mainstream classroom if they can be supported by a teacher’s aide. There is some suggestion that celebrity identification can be viable for the effectiveness of celebrity endorsed programs. Teachers’ aides who are celebrities were used to provide individualized support for targeted students in order to add incentive and motivation for the targeted students in this study. The students, who were identified by their schools as being at risk of failure in their learning were assigned an individual celebrity football player to support their learning within the mainstream class. Qualitative data collection and analysis revealed that the students, as well as the teachers and teachers’ aides, benefited from this program. The important benefits for the students were having good male role models, having assistance from a celebrity to enhance their learning, benefiting from one-on-one support, and gaining knowledge about how to manage their behaviour. Overall an incentive to learn and motivation to behave more appropriately was enhanced by the football players’ celebrity status and influence both in the classroom and in the playground.

Keywords: Challenging Behaviours, Celebrity Status, Enhanced Learning, Teacher’s Aide Support

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 4, pp.285-292. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 742.479KB).

Dr. Danuta Chessor

Lecturer in Psychology, School of Psychology, University of Western Sydney, Bankstown, NSW, Australia

I am a lecturer in Psychology at the University of Western Sydney. My interests are in developmental and educational psychology. I have been a practitioner in educational psychology working with children and adolescents for many years. I have a keen interest in the well-being of children and in holistic and positive ways of viewing behaviour change and learning. Establishing positive communities and focussing on relationships is an important aspect of my work. This focus draws on a strengths base psychology and allows individuals’ strengths to be a basis of change.

Dr. Emilee Gilbert

Post Doctoral Research Fellow, School of Psychology, University of Western Sydney, Bankstown, NSW, Australia

Dr. Emilee Gilbert is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow within Gender, Culture and Health: PsyHealth at the University of Western Sydney, and has expertise in a range of qualitative methodologies, public health policies and practices, and the application of post-structural theory to the analysis of issues surrounding gender, health and sexuality.

Janette Perz

University of Western Sydney, NSW, Australia

Janette Perz is a senior academic in the School of Psychology, and Deputy-Director of Gender Culture and Health Research Unit: PsyHealth, at the University of Western Sydney. Her research focuses in the areas of reproductive and mental health, and the field of primary care and early intervention.

Jane M. Ussher

University of Western Sydney, NSW, Australia

Jane M Ussher is Professor and Chair of Women’s Health Psychology, and Director of the Gender Culture and Health Research Unit, at the University of Western Sydney, Australia.


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