Creative Education
2013. Vol.4, No.3, 172-179
Published Online March 2013 in SciRes ( DOI:10.4236/ce.2013.43025
Evolution of Language Productions and Action Rules Extraction:
Case Study of an 8th Grade Class Girls during a Handball Cycle
Makram Zghibi1, Chamseddine Gunoubi2,3, Nabila Bennour4, Mohamed Ali Jbeli5,
Faten Sahli5, Mohamed Jabri2
1LASELDI, University of Franche-Comté, Besançon, France
2Higher Institute of Sports and Physical Education, Kef, Tunisia
3Research Laboratory “Sports Performance Optimization”, National Center of Medicine and Science in Sports,
Tunis, Tunisia
4UMR EFTS, Mirail University of Toulouse II, Toulouse, France
5Higher Institute of Education and Training Contained, Tunis, Tunisia
Received January 15th, 2013; revised February 18th, 2013; accepted March 2nd, 2013
The aim of this study is to describe the speech act of girls facing handball play situations and then see
how to construct efficient action rules. The used method is choosing a descriptive, exploratory and heuris-
tic analysis of the discursive practices of a group of girls (8 hours of effective lessons, 14 girls aged 14, T =
12 hours of actual practice). The study includes analyze of girl’s speech during the debate of idea’s situa-
tion. On the other hand, we aim the extraction of effective action rules. The quantitative study showed
that speech productions increase notably more than the evolution of action rules formulation during the
cycle. The qualitative analysis showed that the decisions made by the girls guide to re-question the rela-
tionship to knowledge in the educative cycles using collective sport games. Added to that, integrating
moments where students can debate and share opinions about the game is didactically interesting in order
to broaden and refine their repertoire of solutions to win.
Keywords: Debate of Ideas; Discourse Analysis; Action Rules; Handball
Traditionally, the approach of teaching team sports is to
make the players reproduce technical solutions. It imposes also
certain tactical principles imitation before asking learners to
move to the practical phase (Gréhaigne, Billiard, & Laroche,
1999: p. 28). However, numerous studies consider that team
sports, like traditional games, tend to be the main tool in physi-
cal education and sport school lessons (Nachon, 2004).
The main hypothesis is to decrease student motivation in the
classroom. In fact, why would a learner accept to follow a sim-
ple order of the teacher, to run, to jump, to throw, to dribble, to
shoot, to concentrate, to be silent, or to answer?
Either the student obeys, or he rejects this “constraint” using
certain behaviors such as: passivity, violence, withdrawal (self-
isolation), and other “personal adjustments” of the initial didac-
tic contract, learner’s implicit submission or confrontation to
the orders of the teacher, regardless to the nature of the reaction
itself, seems discordant with a real attitude of actor/learner.
The lessons of basketball, handball or football are not only
surpassing the problems of biomechanics coordination. They
also raise questions about partners—opponent human relation-
ships, concerning the principles, the successful collective action
rules and the strategies related to intentionality (Nachon, 2004).
The didactic researcher may question this process whether there
is a link between team sports didactics and its low impact at
school, the student participation and passivity toward “guide-
line methods” and the technical approach must be treated with a
particular attention.
The context intervention, (the situation in which the speech is
delivered), affecting the logics so that the meaning produced by
the end situation takes over on the starting one. This discre-
pancy between what is said and what is targeted was taken by
the “pragmatics” as an object of study. This linguistic discipline
is interested in language elements that their meaning cannot be
understood only by knowing the global context. To better
structure the study, Austin (1970) distinguishes, at the eighth of
meetings entitled “Quand dire cest faire”, (saying is doing),
three acts of speech.
The “locutionary act” (act of saying something);
The “illocutionary act” (an executed act by saying some-
The “perlocutionary act” (far to express a simple act).
In this study we opt for an illustrative analysis based on ex-
amples and a case study (7 girls team), we focus on the re-
sponses content made by students as well as discursive catego-
ries that appear through their language interactions.
Literature Review
Nowadays, the researches that give attention to constructive
role of social interactions are studying whether the “asymmetric
interactions guidance” or the “symmetric interactions of joint
The first pole is specifically looking in the different modes of
supporting or tutoring. Gilly defines these guidance interactions
as “the interactions in which a naive subject is assisted by an
expert subject (adult or child more precocious than the naive)
in the learning of knowledge or know-how skills” (Gilly, 1988:
p. 136). To refer to anyone who has a better understanding or a
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
higher ability level than the learner. This orientation is at the
origin of educational practices prioritizing all forms of regula-
tion accomplished by a more qualified individual thus, able to
provide a support to the learner.
The second pole focuses on the interactions of status and
roles symmetry between peers. The experimental currents that
are interested in this kind of interactions have clearly demon-
strated that cognitive advantage may appear even without the
intervention of the learner monitors or his peers. However, we
should take into consideration the differences in cognitive abili-
ties of learners. So we find ourselves dealing with the socio-
constructivism approach (Perret-Clermont, 1979; Mugny &
Doise, 1981).
This proposes a learning model of constructivism/interaction
based on the concept of “socio-cognitive conflict”. This model
which is anchored in constructivism puts the stress on the social
interaction as an effective means to enhance knowledge and
help in constructing human intelligence. The authors consider
that the socio-cognitive conflict is the result of the confronta-
tions between individuals, which is the source of all cognitive
development. In the same context, Mugny (1985) affirms that
the constructivism approach supports the idea that individual
cognitive activities get their meaning in social interaction. The
child is the co-actor of his intellectual development and he ne-
cessarily increases his cognitive tools level by level, by struc-
tural activity. However we should note that the child can’t en-
hance his cognitive abilities in an isolated situation. According
to Chabchoub (2001), the socio-constructivism is based on
three key concepts developed by the protagonists of the Geneva
school: interactionism, social mediation and socio-cognitive
conflict. The social interaction is a central component of cogni-
tive development; it is a “privileged” link for such learner in-
tellectual development: “The work that we have presented is
based on the assumption that social interaction is a privileged
cognitive development area” (Doise, 1991: p. 58). The deve-
lopment of the research questions starts from a simple rule: it is
not enough to teach children for the sake of simple learning but
to teach them how to make them “tell” and “do”.
The underlying paradigms of this observation question
deeply the knowledge status, the teacher and the learner. The
semio-constructivist paradigm considers the interpretive act of
the student as a “nodal” characteristic of the knowledge foun-
dation; this paradigm allows to analyze, to understand and even
to build learning situations by setting the learner in full of the
appropriation/knowledge construction process by and in the
action. Under these didactic device conditions, he is able to
assign meaning to what he lives, to what he feels, to what he
understands and to what he learns (Mahut, 2003).
In the classical description of the phenomena over an EPS
(physical and sports education) intervention, the classic pattern
is inspired from the information theory (Shannon & Weaver,
1949; Sperber & Wilson, 1989) and takes into account a trans-
mitter (the teacher); a receiver (the learner) and a sent message
from one to the other (knowledge). The teacher’s mission is
giving instructions about the learning received and accom-
plished by the pupil. The problematic, is that the learner is still
devoid of any opportunity to develop the self-instructions and
to give an intervention’s meaning to these activities without the
teacher’s guidance. In discursive pragmatics, every speech is an
act is registered in a project and destined to produce some ef-
fects (Austin, 1962, 1970; Kerbrat-Orecchioni, 2001). We do
not communicate just to communicate, but every act of lan-
guage is inscribed in a principle of pertinence (Grice, 1957)
valuable for the speaker. Every act of language has a sense and
a meaning in the context for its producer, as worthy of interest
or as a subject for interpretation. So the same speech act built to
be addressed to a receiver-learner is not interpreted in the same
way by another learner-receptor: therefore, an interpretation in
message context prevails. Taking into account the above con-
siderations, we question the necessity of opting for a team sport
to a semio-constructivist approach that allows learners to dis-
cuss among themselves to build specific self-instructions (ac-
tion rules). The objective is to access to “the way (ways) in
which the learner interprets the opposition game” (Nachon,
2004). The purpose is to identify and to follow the kinetics
growth of girl’s spoken interventions and action rules elabo-
rated in a ludic context of a handball cycle at school.
This work is registered in a semio-constructivist perspective
that aims to study the verbal exchange of girls during a Hand-
ball cycle. The research protocol proposed in this study orga-
nize a learning Handball cycle, eight lessons of one-hour ses-
sion of practice (eight observed and recorded hours of corporal
and verbal practice) in an authentic environment of teaching. It
is a partially negotiated arrangement with the teacher for the
global section of the cycle’s organization; the teacher is the
main responsible for the learned contents. Didactic situation of
“debate of ideas” is gradually and systematically implemented
in order to familiarize the learner and starts to exchange actu-
ally. It is placed in after/before a game situation with confronta-
tion of 2 teams of 7 players inside a handball field of 40 m
length and 20 meters width.
The suggested educational situations are based on game acts
in a handball court. The class is divided in equitable groups; the
girls play 7 against 7, then the team (1) verbalizes among
themselves in the teacher presence, after that they return to the
match. The team (2) takes 5 minutes break before returning to
the game. Every lesson has two game situations of 10 minutes
(two matches) under the teacher control, separated by a ver-
balization sequence of 5 minutes for team (1) assured by the
same teacher. He asks three kinds of open questions: “What
happened? Explain it? What to do?” and the teacher is neutrally
stimulating girls. These questions are designed to engage play-
ers in the description, interpretation and decision making.
All game situations are digitally video filmed. All verbaliza-
tion sequences “girl’s verbatim” are recorded by a video came-
ra to identify the interlocutors and then it will be transcribed
then translated to English to be clearly analyzed. In other words
speech analysis is the study of language interaction phenomena
in a situated context, involving projects that influence actors
who are in their turn co-constructing action knowledge between
peers and debating their positions in the group.
In this study, which is inscribed in a descriptive and explo-
ratory context, we judged it useful not to mention apriority
hypothesis but we start up from the search results based on our
direct observations. This methodological choice is firstly to
escape the constraints imposed by the formulation of hypothe-
ses and secondly, to assure that the empirical verification is
touching the real verbalization of learners only (Zghibi, 2010).
The objective is not to verify the effects of an approach
based on verbalization but it is a heuristic and exploratory study
which aims, firstly to identify the speeches and to extract the
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 173
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
sions respectively. As shown in Table 1, we note a slight
growth at the fifth session (15). However, from the sixth ses-
sion the frequency starts to become higher (18) and the number
of rule-making actions respectively is overcoming 23 to 25
during the eighth session.
action rules developed by the girls during a handball cycle of
eight 8 sessions, secondly to analyze the player’s discursive
language productions.
The girl’s intercommunication is used as data for this actual
study. Their gestures and facial expressions and the obscene
and vulgar words and insults were not taken in consideration in
the transcription process. As shown in The Figure 1 presenting the evolution of girl’s
taken speech, the girls, through the cycle, are gradually more
able to identify (produce) action rules by themselves. However,
they show a greater capacity to identify self-instructions during
the last three sessions.
Quantitative Study The Table 2 presents the action rules developed by girls.
The improvement follows an ascending curve. In the first
three sessions, we pass by 2, 3 to 4 action rules. A notable ris-
ing in the number of action rules with 7 on the fourth session to
8 during the sixth session. This augmentation is intensified
from the seventh session (14 action rules) to attain its peak du-
ring the eighth session (17). The evolution of rulemaking action
during cycle is displayed in Figure 2 which shown that despite
the two curves follow an ascending movement, the evolution
Taken Speech
The following Table 1 and the figure below show the num-
ber of verbal interventions of girls in each session. In fact, we
note a significant increase in the number of contributions com-
paring to the first four sessions.
The speech evolution knew two main moments. The first
moment lasts from the first (10) to the fourth session (12).
Passing by eleven speeches during the second and third ses-
Taken speech
Figure 1.
Evolution of girl’s taken speech.
Rulemaking action
Figure 2.
Evolution of rulemaking action during cycle.
Table 1.
The taken speech of girls.
Sessions Session 1 Session 2 Session 3 Session 4 Session 5 Session 6 Session 7 Session 8 Result
Taken speech 10 11 11 12 15 18 23 25 151
Table 2.
Action rules developed by girls.
Sessions Session 1Session 2 Session 3Session 4Session 5Session 6Session 7 Session 8Result
Rulemaking action 2 3 4 7 8 9 13 14 59
Creative Education
2013. Vol.4, No.3, 172-179
Published Online March 2013 in SciRes ( DOI:10.4236/ce.2013.43025
of words is more significant than the evolution of elaboration of
rule-making actions for p < 0.05.
Qualitative Study
In this section we will center our research on the girls ex-
pressed views during the transcribed verbalization sequences.
We will opt for a speech analysis. The objective of this analysis
is to understand how, during these debates, the girls create
meaning from game situations they have just lived (Charaudeau
& Maingueneau, 2002). Moreover, the aim of this work is not
to describe and analyze the discussion in itself, but to under-
stand and improve the teaching/learning process by a posture
Meeting No. 1
Aya:We must continue playing together.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: declaration
Nabila:The solution... the solution is to attack with
both wings.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: declaration
In this brief discussion, we note that Aya produces an injunc-
tive speech engaging the whole group. Nabila does not agree
with Aya, because she directs the exchange to another solution,
she takes the assertive form. As a result, her speech is not more
than a proposal. She does not force anyone. She would have
used the same speech form of her friend. At this time, her
statement would cancel the first and it takes over on it.
Meeting No. 2
We will try to take the lead and pull away.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Fawzia: But youre supposed to be a defender with us,
arent you or what?
Illocutionary act: interrogation
Perlocutionary act: criticism
Try to go and catch the ball.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
This is not normal; youre stuck on the same side.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: criticism
Mounira imposes on her colleagues a game involving the
whole group: so she appears as the group strategist. This criti-
cism is complemented by an injunctive form carrying a re-
proach: do not stay inert. From this brief discussion, we deduce
a tension between members of the same team.
Meeting No. 3
Yasmine: We must shoot more.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
We must have someone that provides defense and coverage
for our camp.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
To provide coverage for our backside.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
We must score a maximum of goals so that we can play qui-
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Fawzia:Everyone must take part to conserve the ball.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
If you do not try to catch the ball, you can never win.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: statement
We must pass and move the ball as possible as we can.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
“It must be done continuously and not occasionally!”
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Yasmin and Fawzia have argued injunctive sentences, con-
veying orders of the game manner. In this sense, their speeches
propose accomplished projects to lead the score; that is why
they use injunctive forms: all team members follow the instruc-
Meeting No. 4
Salma: We will try to no more shoot the ball randomly.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Try to avoid long passes.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
We will try to opt for short passes.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Chayma: We will try to make counter attacks.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Ines:We must play tightly close because we are giving
the opponents alot of spaces.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
We must reduce the open spaces by marking man to man.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Hamida: Do not let the opponents play freely.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Ines:We must be well-organized in defense so we a-
void conceding goals.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Chefia: We must mark them closely so they cant find
spaces easily or score at any time.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Four persons take part in this discussion. Chayma’s speech is
injunctive proposing game perspectives. Ines’s speech is better
to improve the game tactics. She does not only propose injunc-
tions for all the team members. Chayma and Ines complete each
other by argumentative connectors. “Any verbal interaction…
definite an argumentation and a co-action frame (…). The
analysis of conversational speech will be aimed at updating the
arguments involved in verbal interactions” (Moeschler, 1985: p.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
Ines resorts to justification to convince the team. Her dis-
course is indeed rich. Yet, Chayma’s discourse is limited to
reformulate an order without explanation. She remains less
Meeting No. 5
Noura: We must concentrate more.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Nawress:We must shoot the ball on each possible oc-
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Do not miss any ball.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Noura:Let us move the ball and play normally.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Nabila:We must be patient; we conserve the ball in
front of their cage; until we have the opportunities to
shoot. Our chance to mark will be better.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
You could pass me the ball because I am in a better position
for shooting than you.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: statement
The game characters continue to produce ideas and guidance
for making a tactic of game and remedying to lead in the score.
Nabila’s speech continues to be the richest: her injunctions are
completed by explanatory argumentative structures. She uses
argumentations to confirm the merits of her suggestions. The
other girl’s injunctions remained brief and short, without any
Meeting No. 6
Monia: I am also the last defender and I am entirely
responsible for defense. So, I have to anticipate and in-
tercept the ball.
Illocutionary act: assertion/injunction
Perlocutionary act: declaration/order
Ahlem:We must reorganize ourselves.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Monia:We must try our best to score the shots.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: statement
Nawress:We must use wide shoots and from all posi-
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Naima:We must take advantage of these lost balls.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: statement
Radhia: Sir, we must continue to play together; this is
our strength.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: statement
Hanen:From now, we must be organized to better
confront them and disturb them.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Believe me, we can easily surprise them.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: statement
Overall, all statements produced have a target which is to
project game manner. The injunctive speech of girls is usually
completed by argumentations. Girl’s argument, not only give us
reasons but also give us an idea about the anticipated conse-
quences. Following these decisions, the argumentation sup-
poses the existence of an intellectual contact.
Meeting No. 7
Noura:You can score without shooting. Certainly
like that’, you can place the ball.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: criticism
Hanen:Sir, we are not organized.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: criticism
We must move more along the 6 m line.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Radhia:We must shoot more than that.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Fawzia: We must switch positions between us.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
We attack rather than defend.
Illocutionary act: injunction
Perlocutionary act: order
Ines:We must pass and move the ball, after that we
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Leila:We must counter attack as soon as possible.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Two key moments characterize the verbal exchange: The
blames/reproaches and the proposed perspectives for remedia-
tion. As a result, in a syntactical plan; two sentence types were
revealed: the assertive and injunctive forms. Except Hanen’s
speech, all statements, whether assertive or conveying orders
are brief and short; offering only solutions to restart the game.
Hanen is not only content with reformulating a reproach, but
she completes it by an injunctive structure as a solution. In fact,
her speech is the most structured.
Meeting No. 8
Nawress:We must continue to play like that.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Ahlem:Demanding the balls is the main solution of
this problem.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Nawress:We must stand out if we want to win.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Monia:We shouldnt concede goals naively.
You have to ask for the ball in the free area.
Illocutionary acts: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Nawress:We must profit on all the opportunities.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
Perlocutionary act: order
Chayma: We should avoid losing the ball stupidly.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Nabila:Sir, we must shoot.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
Chayma:Do not shoot from far, we must come near
the zone area to try.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
We must move and pass the ball the maximum before mak-
ing any decision.
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
We will attack by three players and we change roles each
Illocutionary act: assertion
Perlocutionary act: order
All statements, produced at the beginning or the end of the
cycle, are assertive typed aiming order establishment. All in-
structions are to correct the failure. Most of the instructions are
accompanied by a brief argumentation that explains the causes
or the consequences of the realized act. Nabila produced a
well-structured speech but she stills dominated by her class-
mates developing the same type of discourse. Chayma’s inter-
ventions are the most consistent.
In the last three sessions, the language production’s approach
seems to be the most sought via the ability to make more verbal
interventions. The verbalization sequences helped learners to
acquire the necessary tools for speech-making in an evolution-
nary dynamic context. This demonstrates that girls begin inter-
preting the game better in order to resolve the encountered
problems during the game. Players are fully rooted in the pro-
cess of verbalization and decision-making.
Speeches of girls progress along way the cycle. During the
last three sessions, the words of the players have apparent evo-
lotions while it is not during the first sessions. We note that the
evolution has always followed an upward movement along the
cycle. The evolution is in favor of the verbalization process.
The girls are willing to react verbally and to provide more an-
swers for phenomena considered as contradictory, as the multi-
deter-mined/multi-determinants or evolutionary (Zghibi, 2009).
The speech evolution during the cycle is associated with ac-
tion rules which are elaborated in advance. These action rules
have been developed following a change in the girl’s social
representations concerning the game. In fact, the new represent-
tations of the game helped to resolve problems collectively
(Thabuy, 2007).
These results agree with the Vygotsky’s work (1985). If the
concept of “conceptualization” is viewed in the light of the
Vygotskian’s sense, this postulates that language, thoughts and
motoring act reunite in a dialogical and interpretative space.
Inside the collective action, everyone is in a strategic situation
to achieve something clever for him as well as for the team.
Everyone enacts his proper situation participating in enacting
the collective action of the shared situation... etc. The collective
competence is always a synergy to build and rebuild in every
match... the enacting is somehow distributed. As a result, we
can have experiences only in a group situation and this orches-
tration can be learnt only during the “play” (Masciotra et al.,
2008: p. 69, 2009).
The linguistic productions have the greatest effects at the end
of the cycle by developing the capacity to make more decisions:
the idea’s debate permitted the girls to acquire the necessary
tools for building the action rules in an evolutionary and dy-
namic context. As a result girls begin to better interpret the
game, they resolve the problems of the matcheasier. Thus, the
players are fully rooted in the reflective practice process.
The discussion time given to girls has permitted to them to
have a feed back to:
take a step back after a played situation;
think about and in action;
identify the problems met during the game;
build a collective action project.
The actions rules developed by girls are a way to increase the
action. Cottinet and Harmand (2003: p. 38) consider that the
explicit function of verbalization is promoting self-awareness,
memorizing or emerging acquired knowledge. The verbalize-
tion gives back the learner the power to analyze his practices
and debate them. And this is a sign of an investable learners
autonomy in all sports and outside school field, provided if its
explicitly taught.” so verbalization is the process of putting
thoughts into words. Thus, the idea’s debate sequence is also a
manner of going through the language process as well as to
understand partially, at least, the other representation processes
(Chang, 2009).
The players are involved through verbalization sequences
towards a form of awareness of the context in which they rea-
lize their motoring production. “This action rules awareness
along with verbalization is the most appropriate method to give
an answer to the teacher authorities who participate in the de-
velopment of skills and knowledge of learners from specifici-
ties that characterize them.” (Deriaz, Poussin, & Gréhaigne,
1998: p. 273). These interlocutions are more engaging girls in a
regulation form via a reflexive return over action: if the learner
questions himself about the meaning that he gave to actions, he
can pass to explain the strategies to use or used.
Referring to the literature; Lindemann (2007), declared that
the constructivist posture contains the following points:
the learner is active;
the knowledge construction is a process operated in the
learner’s active experience;
the interpreting learner puts in relationship the action and
action mode sense;
the interpreting learner is linked to the interaction between
the subject and the contextual situation;
through the action, body experience is priming;
through the signs, learner expresses how he lives his ex-
the learner debates in an argumentative universe;
the learner can share different viewpoints;
the learner can use reflection trying to understand the proc-
ess of constructing of knowledge in action;
Learner and teacher build together their experiences during
the educational process.
The learning perspective of constructivist approach focuses
on the process in which learners can build their knowledge and
actions from their experiences. Bearing in mind that the effi-
cient action rules are defined as conditions to be respected and
factors taken into consideration so the game actions be effective.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 177
These action rules are taken into a provisional mental represen-
tation constituting a functional game interpretation having as a
goal to arrange and classify the confrontation rules. Moreover,
these actions rules help to explain the game actions; also they
are the main tactical knowledge support. So during the debates,
girls try to think via and through action. Thanks to an inter-
communication process; girls are able to co-construct mean-
ingful rules for an efficient action of the handball play. This
allows us to extract and analyze the girl’s action game rules in
handball from discursive data collected during the verbalization
sequences. In fact, through the reduced game situations and
verbalization sequences; girls were able to expand and to per-
fect their response ranges.
The reflection on action in the human movement concerns at
the same time behaviors (objectively as observable), the motor
behaviors as an intentional processes and decisional strategies.
This reflection requires a multidisciplinary approach, from the
action philosophy (hermeneutics and phenomenology, argu-
mentative rhetoric) to knowledge (constructivist epistemology),
to semiotics (discursive pragmatics, discourse analysis), to
disciplinary didactics, to intervention’s sciences (psycho-soci-
ology, cogni-sciences, cognitive and ergonomics). In this study,
girl’s discursive interlocutions showed that the discourse af-
fected motor skills, tactics knowledge, behavior and coopera-
tive decision... etc.
Sometimes, girls accept their colleague’s verbalization (dis-
cursive interlocution), and other times they question the deci-
sions and speech made by others (idea’s debate). Deriaz, Pous-
sin and Gréhaigne (2009) opt for the debate of ideas concept.
However, in the same team there can be a certain agreement
and common interests. In this sense we cannot assume that
learners defend divergent view, but defend the common dy-
namic points of view. In this agreement situation the term
“common sense” is the more suitable than the “discursive con-
flict” term (Kerbrat-Orecchioni, 1998). Moreover, Kerbrat-
Orecchioini proposes a redefinition of the debate concept. This
is not a discussion because it generally involves a public, it
acquires a media character. It is never a matter of EPS sessions
because there is no public to convince, but everything is played
between learners (Zghibi et al., 2009).
In experimental conditions we note that girls have showed
discursive skills. The taken speeches of the players over the last
three sessions are more important than the beginning of the
cycle. The girl’s speeches and the efficient action rules are
progressing throughout the cycle. These self-instructions key
touch motor skills, strategies and tactics of the game.
Our study starts always from a playing situation where girls
are called to verbalize to build effective action rules overcom-
ing the game obstacles. The use of handball in EPS is redefined
as and in a link of co construction between the pupil and others.
Therefore, the learner is incorporated in a collective search
for knowledge in relation to his peers. Then, he becomes a
co-author of the game. This construction is done by appropria-
tion/validation/discussion of significances brought into play
(Zghibi et al., 2009). The significance of girl’s productions
concerning idea’s debate and how to construct efficient action
rules help teachers to be aware of pupil’s active learning abili-
ties. In fact, by this discourse, teachers can reflect on their
teaching method and to review their intervention modalities
aiming to improve the teaching/learning process.
Thus, “the discourse analysis objective is not focused on the
extraction of laws or general principles, but it targets the in-
terpretative activity of children considering the context. The
child produces speech acts in order to give effect to the game
situation. Thanks to the participation of the discursive action,
the interpretation related to the game action will be changed
and enriched” (Chang, 2009: p. 238).
In the Tunisian cultural context, knowledge is sought along
way cycles of collective games hence the necessity to integrate
moments where learner can share about game. We should re-
mark that in a study alike we should seize the order of verbal
exchange taking into consideration the differences between the
team members: reports and obtained effects: verbal material ,
non-verbal material (postures, gestures, laughter... etc.). This
means studying local and global organization of conversations
where the interlocutor is engaged in a primordial role as a
“manager” and responsible for the conversation. This work has
other shortcomings:
The no identification of gender variable’s effect (the study
affected only girls);
Failure to identify the effect of verbalization on learning
parameters in Handball;
Failure to take into account the action rules while the game
is in action;
Intuition left by the description, “it is not surprising that at
this level, the cutting operation leaves much room for intui-
tion and the results vary from a corpus analysis to another
(Kerbrat-Orecchioni, 1998: p. 220);
The translation itself is a problem because it can cause a
deviation of meaning.
Moreover, the explanation of the true meaning of the phrase
is only possible using the context of its enunciation and
prosodic accompaniment.
This research is an attempt in which we wanted to extract
and analyze the effective action rules developed by the girls.
The questions that arise here are: is it not necessary to verify
the implementation of student’s action plans? Is it not necessary
to suggest a test modeling levels of practice and age levels?
Isn’t it appropriate to take into account the variable regions
(West/North/East/South…) and city/countryside effect? Many
opportunities are open for further studies.
The effectiveness of teaching practice can be determined by
dimensions other than those directly related to learning situa-
tions, that is to say that the design of learning tasks, especially
the realization of collective tasks leads an overhaul which re-
considers the relationship to knowledge by learners who report
changing place in the team following their operation identity,
reconfiguring the report back to knowledge and collective ac-
This perspective questions the impact of cultural determi-
nism in the regulation of mutual relations within a community
of normalized practice.
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