A Context-Specific Exploration of Teacher Agency in the Promotion of Movement and Physical Activities in Early Childhood Education and Care Settings

Document Type


Publication Date



Early childhood teachers utilise a variety of strategies to promote movement and physical activity (MOPA) in ECEC settings. However, less is known about the processes that underpin these strategies. Using the ecological view of teacher agency, we explored how early childhood education and care (ECEC) teachers from the Philippines actively contribute to MOPA promotion. Through in-depth interviews, 25 teachers from public and private early childhood centres in the Philippines shared their teaching experiences relating to the MOPA of young children. Through reflexive thematic analysis of the interviews, we found key experiences among ECEC teachers that illuminate their agency in promoting MOPA. The findings suggest that teacher agency involves processes such as fostering a supportive class atmosphere for MOPA, creating novel MOPA ideas, sharing MOPA with others, and finding solutions to apparent MOPA concerns. We propose that teacher agency deepens our current understanding of ECEC teachers’ contributions in promoting MOPA in ECEC settings. The practical implications of these new ideas are also discussed.