Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. Special Education


Interdisciplinary and Inclusive Education


Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering


Accardo, Amy

Committee Member 1

Kuder, Sydney J.

Committee Member 2

Shuff, Midge


Special education; Language arts (Elementary)


Language and Literacy Education | Special Education and Teaching


The purpose of this study is to investigate the effect of an increase in physical activity in the classroom on (a) the on-task behavior of special education students and (b) the reading comprehension scores in a READ 180 classroom. The aim of this study is to identify teaching strategies that impact the behavior and academic success of students with special needs. Five sixth graders, three males and two females, with learning disabilities participated in the study. A single-subject ABAB design was used. During the baseline phases, students did independent reading and a reading comprehension assignment without movements immediately beforehand. During the intervention, students participated in a two-to-three minute movement break that incorporated spelling, vocabulary, or grammar review. Words read per minute and percentage correct on the five question comprehension assignment were recorded throughout all phases. Results indicate that students did not increase their on-task behavior or reading comprehension scores after participating in movement breaks. The student satisfaction survey suggests that students enjoyed participating in movement breaks. Further research is suggested to investigate the effects of movement-based lesson activities on the on-task behavior and reading comprehension scores of those with learning disabilities.