PE Happenings

PE Happenings November-December 2018

During the months of November and December our focus in Physical Education for grades 2-3 was dribbling with the hands and overhand throwing.  Lessons around these skills provided students with maximum opportunities for practice. The goal was to move students from their current skill level (which varied from emerging skills to advanced skills within each class) and provide them with deliberate practice to emphasize the critical elements to make their skills more mature.  

Students in grades 4 and 5 spent some time working on the skill of dribbling  and also participated in a unit of moving to open space. These concepts and strategies are used in most sports. Our particular focus was moving to receive a pass from a teammate in an invasion-type game, where one team is trying to “invade” the territory of another team to score a point.  Instruction on moving to open space was done using small sided games and activities providing each child with more practice opportunities than playing a traditional sport activity such as basketball or indoor soccer.

During the weeks before the December break, students in all grades participated in two holiday-themed activities (Feed the Reindeer and Grinch Tag) with a skill focuses of overhand throwing, catching, throwing with scoops (grade 5), and cooperation.  These activities also worked on muscular strength and endurance and cardio-respiratory fitness.

PE Happenings September-October 2018

In physical education we use the months of September and October to teach, model, and practice expectations and the use of equipment.  During this “personal responsibility unit” we build our PE community and establish routines in order for students to be successful, safe, and active all year long.   

We started our year in the cafeteria, while the refinishing of our gymnasium floor was completed.  The floor really looks beautiful, and the new floor markings are much more useful in our everyday use of the gym as a classroom.  While in the cafeteria space, grades 2-3 learned and practiced signals used for attention, how to move from a large to a small space safely, how to play inside safe boundary lines, and how to move while keeping a safe distance from others.  Grades 4-5 used this space to review the rules and skills of four square, how to accept others in a game regardless of skill level, and how to be competitive, and at the same time fair and sportsmanlike.

Most classes were in the gym by their third PE class.  We had to backtrack a little to learn about our new set of boundary lines finding stars, and dots, and how to manage ourselves responsibly in this larger space.  Students are learning how to read the warm-up message, how to manage equipment, and “live” the rules. Students participate in activities that will deliberately teach them how to move safely, play by the rules, and be responsible and inclusive in our gymnasium space.   These activities include individual practice activities, tag games, simple team games, cooperative activities and movement problems and some station activities. This time at the beginning of the year also allows me to pre-assess students and learn how classes function together so I can plan “just right” lessons for each class.  We will culminate and celebrate our personal responsibility unit with the annual Fall Obstacle Course, where students put into practice the major concepts practiced over the past two months.

Please be aware of the new specialist “letter” schedule that was put in place to avoid students missing a speciality area when we have a day off from school or a snow day.  If you are unsure if it is your child’s day to wear sneakers, check the school’s website. Most teachers have posted the specialist days in their calendars and the days are also posted on the main school calendar.  

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