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Health sciences professor Julian Reed writes book about movement in classroom

Furman University Professor of Health Sciences Julian Reed

Furman University Professor of Health Sciences Julian Reed has written a new book about integrating movement and curriculum in the elementary classroom.

The book, “Activating the Modern Classroom,” is published by Information Age Publishers.

Reed’s new book explores strategies to activate educational content with movement in ways that improve behavior, increase focus and enhance academic engagement and performance.

From the team behind “Walkabouts,” “Activating the Modern Classroom” presents research and provides engaging, easy-to-implement classroom activities to help elementary-grade teachers address some of today’s most pressing challenges. The book advances strategies—and the science behind them—to activate educational content with movement in ways that improve behavior, increase focus and enhance academic engagement and performance.

The book also includes research-based strategies for helping kinesthetic learners and describes how moving while learning can help students with ADD and ADHD. The book offers descriptions of three web-based platforms that can be used in the classroom to integrate curriculum and movement and why and how this is beneficial to students.

“Activating the Modern Classroom” also presents movement-based activities for language arts, literacy, math, social studies and science that integrate movement and improve student behavior, increase student focus, and enhance students’ academic engagement and performance.

Reed, who consults with school districts and educational organizations across the country, began developing movement-related lessons and workshops over a decade ago after the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001 was imposed. NCLB triggered a significant decrease in attention on physical education and recess by focusing almost exclusively on student achievement in defined core academic subjects.

As states developed or selected standardized tests to hold schools and students accountable to these defined core subjects, content that wasn’t tested—such as physical education—became a lower priority. This shift in focus prompted researchers like Reed to study the relationship between academic performance, academic achievement and mental receptivity in a classroom setting.

In addition to serving as faculty member in the Furman Department of Health Sciences, Reed is an Affiliate of the Prevention Research Center in the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina in Columbia.

Reed holds a bachelor’s in environmental studies from Hobart and William Smith Colleges, a master’s in exercise and sport sciences from the University of Miami, and a doctorate in exercise and sport sciences from the University of Northern Colorado. He most recently earned a master’s in public health from the University of South Carolina.

Reed’s research focuses on examining links between physical activity and cognitive function of youth, as well as investigating associations between the built environment and physical activity. His research appears in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health, Preventive Medicine, Preventing Chronic Disease, and the Journal of American College Health.

Learn more about “Activating the Modern Classroom.” Or, contact Furman’s News and Media Relations office at 864-294-3107.

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