Nancy R. Francis, EdD

(Retired) Professor Emeritus, Kinesiology

I am passionate about the potentially powerful role of movement- in whatever form it takes- in making our lives more meaningful. My roots are in children’s school physical education and dance education, both as movement forms with the potential to emancipate and empower participants. The cultural contexts of our movement experiences as situated in social settings intrigue me. Thus, my research has taken me into the historical (curriculum), Indigenous cultures, schools (meaningful movement via Kretchmar) and after- school settings, among others.

  • Pedagogical and curricular models in physical education
  • Physical literacy
  • Dance education
  • Dance and the Child International;
  • Physical and Health Education Canada (Dance education, Research Council)
  • American Educational Research Association
  • International Association for Physical Education in Higher Education

Kilborn, M., Lorusso, J. & Francis, N. (2015). Physical education in Canada: An in-depth curricular analysis. European Physical Education Review. (Hard copy not yet available) 10.1177/

Johnson, A. & Francis, N. (2014). Social development of primary aged children through a movement education program, published abstract, Global Summit on the physical activity of children, Toronto, ON. Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 2014, 11(Supp. 1), S126-S198 © 2014 Human Kinetics, Inc. 3

Francis, N. & Lathrop, A. (2014). ‘Here we go ‘round the Mulberry bush’: Problematizing ‘progress’ in Ontario’s elementary school dance curriculum: 1900 to 2000. The Journal of Dance Education, 14, 27-34.

Lu, C., Francis, N. & Lodewyk, K. (2013). Movement domains. In D. Robinson & L. Randall (Eds.), Teaching physical education in Canadian schools. Toronto: Thompson Books.

Lathrop, A., & Francis, N. (2011). Children who drill, seldom are ill: The rise and fall of the ‘female tradition’ in Ontario elementary school physical education curriculum; 1890-1990. Historical Studies in Education, 23 (1), 61-80.

  •  Socio-cultural foundations of movement studies
  • Pedagogy in school physical education
  • Curriculum development in school physical education
  • Dance education
  • Physical activity programs throughout the life-span