2011 Volume 56 Issue 2 Pages 435-449
Kentaro Sasaki (1923-1994) was a physical education teacher who introduced a new style of teaching involving essay writing (seikatsu-tsuzurikata) in the early years of the new physical education movement in Japan during the postwar period. He is also recognized as a physical education practitioner who was one of the first to place great value on pupil cognition. The main purpose of the present study was to clarify the evolution of his ideas on how to use essay writing and to improve the cognition of his pupils. For this purpose, the author studied mainly Sasaki's practice records from 1952 to 1955, printed in his book entitled “taiiku-no-ko”.
In his practice records, it can be recognized that he promoted pupil cognition both in daily life guidance and course instruction in physical education. For daily life guidance, he used essay writing initially to encourage disabled children and to form harmonious groups. However, he gradually changed the purpose of using essay writing to that of bringing up children to be persons in their own right, even in the face of social change. In addition, the epistemology he based it on changed from a problem-solving to a realistic form.
He eventually applied the essay writing he had advocated for daily life guidance to course instruction in physical education. From this, it became possible to define his “seikatsu-taiiku”.