Category: Middle & High School

This category focuses on how to effectively teach middle school, junior high school, and high schoolers. Learn more about how best to connect with and instruct students who are transitioning from childhood to adulthood, and how to motivate them to be physically active and make healthy lifestyle choices.

50 Million Strong by 2029 – It Starts with Us!

After attending SHAPE America sessions where the 50 Million Strong by 2029 commitment was unveiled and explained, I began thinking, “What can I do as an individual to further this exciting vision?”  As a retired secondary HPE teacher – coach, I now work facilitating our Sheboygan (WI) Area School District’s Pre K PE program in what began as an Emeritus project.  The Early Learning Center houses approximately 600 children ages 3 – 5.  These are the graduating students of 2029, so what better place to begin promoting 50 Million Strong!

During the preparation of developing a plan to promote 50 Million Strong, I developed the following eight guidelines to help us reach the SHAPE America goal:

  1. Design/implement lessons teaching fundamental skills based upon standards and assessments.
  2. Integrate curriculum using literacy, math; PBIS (positive behavior according to a school goal).
  3. Place emphasis upon physical activity.
  4. Offer activity events (JRFH, FUTP60, etc.) that involve parent- child interaction of a physical nature.
  5. Conduct parent/other adult educational workshops relative to PE & H literacy.
  6. Promote Health Education inclusion.
  7. Seek out community partnership.
  8. Expand activities into the community beyond school.

When teaching, I regularly followed the first five guidelines, but after the information came out about 50 Million Strong I thought I could do more:

School Recess Gets a Leg Up With Newly Released Resources

Schools across the country now have step-by-step guidance and evidence-based strategies to support school recess for all K-12 students and enhance active school environments.  Two new guidance documents, Strategies for Recess in Schools and Recess Planning in Schools: A Guide to Putting Strategies for Recess Into Practice, were just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and SHAPE America – Society of Health and Physical Educators, and can be downloaded free of charge here.

According to SHAPE America Chief Executive Officer E. Paul Roetert:

This is a milestone in our quest to increase children’s physical activity levels.  Daily recess, monitored by well-trained staff or volunteers, can optimize a child’s social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development. Recess contributes to the recommended 60 minutes of daily physical activity for students and helps them apply the knowledge and skills they learn in an effective health and physical education program. In addition, recess supports 50 Million Strong, SHAPE America’s commitment to empower all kids to lead active and healthy lives.

LMAS Interactive Infographic Promotional Kit

A new Let’s Move! Active Schools interactive infographic is now available to help schools find physical education and physical activity resources, programs, professional development, grants, training and technical assistance. Please use the assets and messaging below to share the infographic via your newsletters, social media, emails, webinars and trainings.

We encourage you to customize any of the below language to align with your organization’s audiences and priorities.

Images

Going UP? What’s your PE Elevator Speech?

I was recently challenged to come up with an effective physical education “elevator pitch.” What would I say in a brief twenty to sixty second speech – the time it takes an elevator to travel 4-5 floors – summarizing what physical education is and why it’s important?

People often ask me, “What do you do for a living?” This is the perfect elevator speech opening! If you’ve taught physical education for a while you know that when you tell people you teach physical education, they immediately reference their own physical education experiences either as a child or as a parent. Sadly, these experiences don’t always reflect positively or even accurately what’s happening in today’s quality physical education programs.

So, when someone asks, “What do you do for a living?” we all need to recognize that we’ve just been given the perfect setup for an elevator pitch to highlight the merits of physical education. What will you say? The success of your pitch depends on your ability to explain what makes physical education important, and in less than a minute, hook your listener.

Make Lemonade out of Lemons: A 2017 New Year Resolution

As health and physical educators, it’s easy to feel frustrated by school district politics or sense a lack of support for your teaching.  I completely understand and as a middle-high school health and physical educator I’ve been there many times myself.  However, I also often think that as teaching professionals we don’t give ourselves enough credit.

We are in the business of creativity.  Health and physical educators are routinely challenged to think outside the box. We constantly need to differentiate our instruction (sometimes 5 or more ways within a single activity), adapt to a wide variety of skill levels in our classes, and simultaneously manage and try to teach more students in small spaces that would give most classroom teachers nightmares!

Despite these impressive talents, we too often allow ourselves to get focused on the funding, or lack thereof, within our district.  We think, “It sure would be nice to have a bigger budget or PEP grant!  I could have a variety of climbing gear, fitness stations, on-line portfolios (I do love the portfolios. . .but have never had to pay for them), outdoor recreation and challenge course equipment, and so much more!”