Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Superhero's are real!

Today in Lab it was a Superhero theme. My group was with the pre-k students for this lab. We started out going outside on the small playground. I played tag with many of the students who were really having a good time. We played variations of tag and had the students hop and gallop. We noticed that some of the students struggled with these locomotor movements because of their age. The biggest mistake was that many of the students were hoping with two feet, or jumping. After we played outside we came inside and set up our game "Heroes and Villians" which we renamed after "Sharks and Minos." We had the students run first while playing the game first, then we had them hop, and last we had them gallop. I found that many of the students in this age group are at the initial stage of these locomotor movements. Some students even at the pre-k age were already quite a bit better at these movements than some of the other students were. In this week's lab i felt that the students got really into the activities because of the superhero theme. The best quote I heard of the day was a student who said, "Wow I never knew that Superman and Batman were actually real." It is this kind of excitment that helps to show how fun and educational physical education can be and that excites me!

PE Hall of Shame

Kickball has been added to the Physical Education Hall of Shame for a variety of reasons. I have played kickball and disagree with many of these reasons and feel that if some slight variations of the game are made, then it can be a fun, safe, and physically active game that doesn't embarass students. One of the criticism's is that it has the potental to be embarrassing to students. However, when I am teaching a class I will make a slight variation to the game so that when one team is up to bat there are no outs. Instead everyone gets a chance to kick the ball each inning and that way people won't feel bad for being the last out of the inning. Another criticism is extremely low participation. Having everyone have a chance to kick the ball takes care of part of this. Another variation which I would add would be to have the students switch their positions after every batter in a systematic order so that they keep moving and have a chance to see different kinds of action in different positions. Lastly, a criticism is a high likelihood of injury. There are ways to prevent this however. First, I would introduce a no head hunting rule. If I were to see that any student was going for the head then they would have to sit out. People would only be out if they are hit from waste down or I might think about paying baseball rules in which you just throw the ball to another person on the same team and aren't allowed to throw it at the person running the bases. Another way I would try to help the students avoid injury is to have the students in the field call for the ball if it is coming to them in order to prevent confusion and running into each other. In conclusion almost any activity that is played in physical education has a rick for injury and that is important for people to understand. These simple changes can help the teacher protect their students while providing an atmosphere of fun, challenging activity for class.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

SUNY Cortland Mini Conference



“Windows of opportunity don’t come often.” This is what the main idea of Dr. Judy Rink’s opening session at the Mini conference was last Friday. As I sat there I waited for her to begin speaking thinking that she would soon be telling us about how we as Physical Educators had to work hard to become professionals. However, I was not aware of just how hard we as a profession must work in order to change our culture and the way people view it. Dr. Rink explained that for what seems like the first time ever people seem to be in agreement of what Physical Education should be. Physical Education should have the goal to educate people for a physically active lifestyle. However, we as a profession have obstacles that may interfere with this idea. As physical educators we must be able to bring the school to the community and also bring the community to the school. In other words we must provide means to get our students to stay physically active after they leave school. It also means that we must bring community groups and organizations into the school to show that we are working with them to help keep our community healthier and more physically educated. As physical educators we also must understand how movement is a great medium for learning and we must have active intramural programs and after school programs that give students more opportunities to explore a healthy lifestyle. I came away from Dr. Rink’s speech feeling that there was quite a bit of pressure on each of us if we are to change the way people feel about Physical Education. However, I look at it as a challenge that I can help make a difference in the lives of our future youth. After all, like Dr. Rink said, windows of opportunity don’t happen often and it is up to us to make the most of our chance to improve our youth and help Professionalize our wonderful field.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Lab #1

Today was our first official Lab. I was fortunate enough to work with different age groups. I came in hoping that I could really get down on the same level as the kids and engage with them to find out what kinds of things that they like. First I was able to join some students who were playing a game of checkers. I got to know two students Mike and Liam. They seemed very excited that "the college kids" were going to watch and help them play. We then followed that same group upstairs to the gym and played Flytrap, and blob tag. I found that the younger kids did a pretty good job but that their fine motor skills were definately not as advanced as the older kids. To finish out the day I went over to a group of 5th grade girls and played four square with them. I was impressed as they made many of their own rules and showed much improvement in the fine motor skills that the students who were just three years younger than them did not possess yet. I really enjoyed getting hands on with the kids and hope to continue this and build on it getting to know more students as the semester progresses.