Challenge Your Students
When I plan, I firstly plan a skeleton for the whole term and then week by week I adapt, reflect and make changes to my weekly planners.
I’m writing this blog as my Prep planner didn’t really work out, well let me just say I’m glad things didn’t work out as I had planned! I have been focusing on Locomotor Movement Skills and then my next step is to introduce them to Mini Athletics. I planned for my students to incorporate the movement skills that we have discovered into our Mini Athletics program. I wanted for them to combine these movements and understand that these movements can be used in many sports and in everyday life. One of my Prep grades have challenged me to challenge them, so today was the day to challenge them.
My challenge was for them to create their own obstacle movement course and then sharing and explaining their process. They were given 3 hoops, 10 cones, 2-3 hurdles and 2 bean bags and off they went. They worked in small groups and had 15 minutes to come up with their own course. When the students took on this challenge I thought to myself, hmmm maybe this won’t work? Maybe this is too hard for them? Maybe they won’t be able to explain their process and why they design their course the way they did.
They proved me wrong! These students are 4 and 5 year olds and they were amazing! They all created their own course incorporating various movements including jumping, hopping, running, leaping and crawling. They presented like they’ve been presenting at conferences for years. The way to spoke about their course and breaking down how to complete their course was amazing. Not only did they speak with confidence, but the language they were using was inspiring.
So it doesn’t matter if your lesson doesn’t go as planned, be prepared to adapt and be prepared to challenge your students.
Never be afraid in giving your students that chance to further their learning, as I continue to learn I see the magic they can create and most importantly I see the enjoyment on their faces when they make new discoveries.
Facebook: Miss Physical Education
Creating Physed Moments
This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a while, but I wasn’t sure on how to go about it. I have been very inspired by @phys_educator and @iPhys_Ed by creating my own episodes to support all educators, especially the educators that are just starting out.
We all know that teaching is a demanding job, sometimes more admin than actual teaching and with more and more new tech getting involved in teaching, some teachers would feel very overwhelmed to keep up with the latest tech and various professional learning.
These Physed moments are all about supporting and guiding educators. The moments that I share are based on my experiences and what I have used in the past and still using. Like I mention in the episodes, there are many ways or various apps/programs that you can use to further develop your teaching, therefore will equal student success.
Every Monday I upload another Physed Moment episode on my Facebook page and Twitter page, which lasts from about 2-5 minutes. This gives our educators a basic insight on different tools and apps, how to get started and ideas on implementing into their programs. Some episodes may seem basic for you, however we need to remember that there are thousands and thousands of Physed teachers around the world that require that initial push and support to get them on the right track and feel motivated.
This project means a lot to me, If I can help 1 teacher or 100 teachers, then our students will benefit in the area of Physical Education.
I love what I do, I love seeing students succeed, I love learning, trying new ways to engage my students and I love supporting other educators so their students succeed as well.
It’s up to you to create your own Physed Moment.
Facebook: Miss Physical Education
YouTube: Christina Polatajko
Songs in Health and Physical Education
No, I am not a singer or a dancer, but I do love to incorporate many different tricks and ideas to ensure my students are always learning. I begun to incorporate some singing and dancing into my programs to help students to remember their P.E vocabulary, mainly for my students. Learning new words is so important in all learning areas and P.E and no exception. Students are able to identify the words and place these words onto our P.E word wall. Students make connections, they are confident in explaining the meaning and demonstrating the skill/movement/sport.
When you listen to some of the songs below, they may sound a bit ‘off key’. Although for our students when they see or hear the words and sing the song, they are then discovering and making connections with their learning. This further develops their physical literacy.
Another fun way to learn - trust me, you don't need to be a good singer, you just need to join in with your class
(Jumping and Hopping)
(Word of the week)
Facebook: Miss Physical Education
Top 10 Essentials I Need As The Health and Physical Education Teacher
This quick blog post is all about the important little or big things you need to create magic in your ‘big classroom’. Some educators may have different opinions, and that’s ok, but for me the top 10 below is something I need to have every year.
What’s your top 10?
Facebook: Miss Physical Education
2017, The Year of...... Well we will find out in 1o months time.
Summer holidays are almost over for us here ‘Down Under’, however I believe it’s an exciting time, because soon we begin another chapter in making a difference.
Just finished presenting at the ACHPER International Conference in Canberra and yet again it was a great experience, not only to present but to learn and network.
I was told today and I quote “I’ve never been to a session where I feel so inspired and to want to make a difference. Thank you.” I was quite humbled and overwhelmed when I heard that. I’m a pretty modest person who just enjoys my career and will always volunteer to present at various conferences.
Why do I present? For me, this is the opportunity to share, learn and inspire others. I’m a big believer as an educator that it is vital to guide other educators with strategies, resources and tools that you use. Not all of us are on the same level, however to be able to present and guide the educators who are at my sessions to the next level, is one thing I really enjoy. If people make the effort to listen, to ask and to learn I’ll always support them to make sure they experience quality teaching.
So, what now? It’s time to begin a new journey at Newbury Primary School, Melbourne. This opportunity I am very excited about. It’s a brand new school, which opens to our students on the 1st February. How cool is this!
This year my goals are simple when beginning at a new school – create – collaborate – connections – community.
So you may ask, what are my plans or ideas to create an amazing HPE program – you’ll have to wait and see.
Follow my journey in 2017 – Let me inspire you.
Facebook: Miss Physical Education
Physical Activity – We don’t have enough time.
There is always enough time for physical activity.
As Physical Educators, one of our major concern is time. Time is a huge factor as we only see our students, well for most of us, once a week, 60 minutes. By the time we pick up our students, drop them off for their next lesson, settle them down and ready to learn, really we only keep them active for 40 – 45 minutes. I agree this is not enough time, especially when we need to follow the following policy which is stated in the Education Policy:
Schools must conduct physical and sport education for the mandated time for all students in Years P–10 in government schools. The mandated times are:
In primary schools for years:
o P–3: 20–30 minutes of physical education a day.
o 4–6: 3 hours per week of physical education and sport with a minimum of 50% of that time for physical education.
In secondary school’s years 7–10: 100 minutes each, per week for physical education and sport.
I wonder how many of us follow the guidelines above? Well let me help you to ease your thinking on how you can meet the mandated times with more physical activity at your school.
Encourage your staff Imagine being stuck indoors all day and every day, you’ll go crazy, well I would. So encourage your staff to conduct their literacy and numeracy classes outside. There are so many ways teachers can include physical activity into their lessons. But this just won’t happen on it’s own, as the leader we need to support, promote and educate our teachers.
* Lunchtime Clubs
Most schools I know run a Lunchtime Clubs Program. These are great because this will give you an opportunity to run a sporting club, walking/running club, aerobics club or any type of active club. Once again promote your club and allow your students to run these clubs.
* Move your body
Move your body could be implemented before classes begin, after recess or lunch or even to have a break in between lessons. Designate a time in your school that all year levels must head outside to ‘move their bodies’ for 10 minutes a day. Not only will this clock up the active time, but also refresh the students and staff minds and get them ready to be focused for their next session.
* Active Zones
Besides the lunchtime clubs, another idea you could use for students to be active during break times is to allocate ‘active zones’ around your school. For example, put signage near your courts or playground which will encourage students to move and run around safely in these areas. These active zones will also decrease students sitting down for the whole break. You may want to include on your signage or posters some exercises for students to follow.
When I was in primary school, I use to love going outside for a game because we met our class expectations, we completed our work or achieved enough class points to head outside for a game. Unfortunately, I don’t see this much at all any more, so remind your teachers to use games as rewards in their classes. Heading outside for a 20minute game is something students work hard towards to. Some teachers may say, “I don’t know any games” that’s easily fixed and a poor excuse in my thoughts, so provide them with a list of games.
* P-6 Development Sports Program
I’ve worked at schools where not only do the year 5/6 students head out for interschool or intraschool sports but also year 3/4 students. I love this, as the year levels get together (1 hour a week) and complete either station work, rotate through various sports, work as a team and enjoy running around.
As you can see there are many ideas (and I’m sure there are other ideas) to meet the mandated times above. The expectations start with us, we need to set the tone and ensure our students are getting enough active time. Not only will this improve their learning abilities, but most importantly improve their health and well-being. Come on let’s lead our students to a happy and healthy future.
Facebook: Miss Physical Education.
As I begin to switch off, I think it is important for me to reflect on a BIG year. This year I had the opportunity to begin at a new school, Aitken Creek PS located in Craigieburn, Melbourne. After being at Taylors Hill PS for 6 years, I took the challenge to get out of my comfort zone and to further develop my learning. For me this was a risk, as I was settled and happy at my previous school, but I knew if I wanted to be an even better teacher I needed to move forward. That I did, however I was scared, I was worried and I was nervous heading into the new school, as I had so many ideas that I wanted to implement. For me at the beginning it was all about building positive relationships with the staff, students and school community.
So what did I learn in 2016 – Top 5
My highlights in 2016 – Top 5
What will happen in 2017?
Well, that’s the exciting part. I’ve joined a new school community in Newbury PS, which is a brand new school that opens in 2017. What an opportunity! With 7 years under my belt and still learning, I cannot wait to implement the ideas I have for this school. Will it work? Well we will find out, but I have a funny feeling it will.
Just think, every year we get better and better at what we do – that’s the exciting part.
Thank you everyone for your support, I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Facebook – Miss Physical Education
Twitter - @cpola17
Instagram – Miss_Physical_Education
Why does Flipped Learning work for me? How has it become successful in Physical Education.
12 months ago I gave up on flipped learning due to lack of research, inspiration and knowledge. 9 months ago I had begun to develop inspiration and knowledge to start my flipped learning journey again. If someone told me 2 years ago you’ll be flipping your classroom in Physical Education, I would have told them to turn it up!
For me and my students (most importantly my students), it’s been a game changer.
Let me tell you briefly why this method of teaching has been a success in 2016.
I was determined to find out more about flipped learning and thanks to Twitter I was able to do this and connect with other educators that flip their learning. My knowledge has improved throughout the 2016 year and that’s due to having a go and wanting to learn more. I cannot wait to learn even more in 2017 – I wonder what blog post I’ll be writing this time next year about flipped learning?
Inspiration is the key! Too many to name, but they know who they are regardless if these educators flip their classroom or not, they have guided me to ensure my teaching and passion is consistent. I’ve been so inspired when I see other educators flip their classroom – it is amazing what they can come up with and how students will benefit from this.
I never been a creative person, however the longer I’ve been in this profession, the more creative I get. I think as an educator you need to be creative. Flipped learning has allowed me to be more creative and think outside the square. There are some educators out there and I think, how do you think of this, this is brilliant! Again another form of inspiration.
Yes, we all know I am fan of ICT – HUGE – as long as it is used appropriately and necessary. With flipped learning comes the ICT part of it – We know flipped learning is not all about the ICT and videos, but it is a huge part of it. Using ICT here has allowed me to explore many techniques, apps and programs to create my flipped learning for my students.
Flipped Learning in Physical Education has work (for me) and has been successful;
When starting out, you must educate your students and their families why this method is game changer. This will take some time, however if you are consistent, passionate and determined, they will follow.
So, will I be flipping my learning again in 2017?
You’ll have to follow me to discover what happens next.
#flipclass #flippedlearning #ausflipchat
Facebook: Miss Physical Education
Youtube: Christina Polatajko
It all begins with us, the educators.
Sport and Health and Physical Education (HPE) are two different meanings to student learning, development and knowledge. Both as equally important to implement into any school timetable.
But why am I comparing these two? As educators we need to understand the meaning of sport and HPE before we go and deliver our outstanding programs. The language that is use in our programs is crucial to any student learning.
Breaking down the meaning of sport and HPE in our lessons especially in our younger years is a must, so they are aware of the two.
"An activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment." Oxford Dictionary.
Examples of sport:
Health and Physical Education:
Well here is a brilliant article breaking down the importance of HPE in all schools. http://www.achper.org.au/documents/item/394
Before introducing 'sport' students need to learn the basic movement skills, understand how to maintain a healthy and active life etc. I'm based in a primary setting and I get frustrated when I hear people say "we have sport today."
No, not sport, it's HPE. Yes schools play inter-school sports competition. They are still in a learning environment, they compete, build on their social skills, resilience, game sense, team work and much more. But these skills don't come naturally to everyone, we as educators incorporate these components into our daily HPE programs.
#physed teachers, we have been employed to guide and teach our students the curriculum of Health and Physical Education. Sport is part of the curriculum, spread the correct use of the language.
It's much better hearing students and teachers say, "we have Health and PE today."
Our last week of school consists of ‘Kids Choice’ and ‘Teach the Teacher’. I can always guarantee that Prep – 2 students will always choose the game Fruit Salad and year 3-6 students will always choose Octopus. A crowd favourite.
So I thought let’s add some challenges to these old games and make them more interesting. Below I have our top 5 popular games voted by the students and we have come up with some ideas to include into the game. These games are normally played either at the start or the end of a lesson.
Due to privacy, I was unable to video the students to demonstrate the games below.
New trick: Add a fork and a spoon (who are the taggers) – they call out any fruits and those fruits must run past the fork and spoon to the other side of the wall. If the fruits get tagged, they complete 10 star jumps or an exercise of their choice.
New trick: When a student gets tagged, they must stand with their arms out and feet a part. They can be saved ONLY by another student, who must crawl between their feet. That student needs to be careful, because they can get tagged as well when saving someone (crawling). It’s all about when is it the right time to save their friend.
New trick: Add an ‘Eagle’ in front of the bean bags. They must protect the eggs and try to tag the students. If they tag a student, that student must run back without a bean bag and wait for their next turn.
New trick: Every student but the taggers have a tennis ball. When a student gets tagged they must still stand like a scarecrow and place their tennis ball near their feet. Instead of crawling through their legs, the student must throw the ball to the person who is tagged. They must catch the ball and throw it back, however if someone drops the ball whilst saving they must try again. Students need to be careful when saving a student, as they can get tagged as well.
These are just some examples we have used and I really love adding new tricks. But make sure you ask the students and get them to think about the new ideas.
What new tricks do you have?
These are my own opinions and experiences. I love to share and reflect.