Taking a break from travel and running posts to give an update on what distance learning looks like for the 200 Smootents in my middle school physical education classes.
JCPS KY Non-Traditional Instruction: It was a challenge to grasp how I would deliver videos with meaningful content for physical education. There are also the concerns of various living arrangements, the amount of movement space, and the lack of equipment.
I tried to make everything as easy as possible for the students and the parents. Let’s face it, P.E. is not considered a priority when students are trying to grow in literacy and numeracy. Despite the opposition, I want to deliver quality instruction as if we were still inside of the gym.
These are the images of Google Slides and videos shortened into gifs of my use of Google Classroom to teach physical education for digital learners.
Physical Education lessons will be uploaded every Thursday so you can plan out your Friday Related Arts. There will be three assignments that you may work on throughout the week. Please work around your schedule.
Let’s Go, Smootents! You got this!!!
Repetitions: My P.E. classes always begin with students in squads (larger classes) or restorative circles for smaller groups. We would have an exercise leader(s) get the day started with warm ups. Students are familiar with these exercises, so I put them into an As Many Reps As Possible activity.
Flexibility: I always stress the importance of dynamic and static stretching for warm-ups and cool-downs. Students had to practice each stretch based on directions from Spark PE Skill Cards. Afterwards, they recorded which were the easiest and the most challenging.
TikTok Dance Challenges: My 8th grade young ladies love to dance. They were given their own area away from the gym floor to turn up with their friends. For NTI, I provided a video that demonstrated the Renegade dance in slow motion, medium speed and full speed. The students had to answer what speed they were able to master.
The Pacer Run: The FitnessGram Pacer Test is something my students look forward to due to incentives. I shot a video challenging students to maintain their cardiovascular fitness. Some students used their driveways, hallways and backyards to record their number of laps. When school is back in session, the learning focus will be on heart rate.
Alphabet Workout: This activity has a lot of variations. The main goal is to spell your name by doing an exercise assigned for each letter. My video demonstrated each exercise with modifications. Students had to respond if they did their first and last name, first name, or not able to get past the first letter of their name.
Basketball Sit-Ups: I found this activity online. The object is to score as many points as possible in 1 minute using socks.
Fitness Walking: “Walk and Talk” is always an option for students in class. Student choice to walk the perimeter of the gym is preferred over being inactive in the bleachers. For this lesson, I talked about how walking is a way to burn calories with less stress on the joints compared to other sports. The task was to walk outside, socially distanced, with parent/guardian permission for at least 30 minutes.
Aerobic Capacity: For this lesson, I used skill cards from SparkPE with overlapping GIFs to make them more interesting. The trick is to search GIFs with transparent backgrounds. It was a technique I learned in a Google professional development last summer. John Pedigo, from Wagner HS taught me how to spice up my slides and docs.
Zumba Shake 1, 2, 3: While I was editing videos, I came across an older Zumba clip from the Louisville Hike, Bike, and Paddle. Bingo! Another lesson idea. I found a kid friendly link on Youtube of the same song. For credit, students had to share a song that would be good for Zumba. I got everything from Rush, “Athem” to Beyonce, “Before I Let Go.”
National Field Day: The team at OpenPhyEd was gracious enough to organize a virtual field day for students to participate in safely at home. There were around 20 activities utilizing common household items. I created a choice board with embedded links to video instructions. My Smootents had to participate in at least five events in order to earn a certificate.
Tae Bo Cardio Fat Burn: With most of the basics covered, I had to decide on something upbeat to keep students engaged. To my suprise, Billy Blanks is still out here killing it with new Tae Bo videos filmed in his living room during quarantine.
Yoga For Beginners: My friend, Steve Sexton, invited me to a virtual yoga class. My plan was to tighten up my yoga skills and do a video. I can teach Yoga, but there are others who can do it so much better. I scraped the video idea and linked to a Youtuber instead. My Smootents know that I at least tried.
Mindful Breathing: Although my primary duties are to teach P.E. standards, I love to incorporate elements of Health education into my pedagogy.
Student Choice: For the last week of NTI, students will be given three options on a choice board along with this last gif and Bitmoji.
Teacher Reflection: Online teaching and distance learning has reinforced my work ethic of working smarter and not harder. I have all of these tools at my fingertips that I am finally using and learning more about each day. This could mean a lot moving forward for hosting online parent teacher conferences, being a paperless classroom, virtual office hours, intentional instruction during snow days, providing real-time feedback, and strategizing how my work flows. While I much prefer face-to-face teaching interactions, I have enjoyed growing through non-traditional instruction.