Posted on November 22, 2017
Physical Education First Semester Overview
The elementary students at Mid-Pacific Institute were able to refine and develop their motor skills, knowledge, and sportsmanship to attain lifetime fitness. All students in grades Kindergarten through 5 were able to monitor their strength, endurance, and flexibility through their Fitnessgram assessments. Students refined their motor skills and eye-hand coordination through daily warm-ups and activities. Team-building activities reinforced concepts of sportsmanship and teamwork, which are necessary for students to successfully interact with their peers in physical activity.
Kindergarten through 2nd Grade
The kindergarten through second grade students focused on mastering locomotor skills while grasping the concept of spatial awareness and pathways. Students applied their locomotor skills through their daily daily warm-up routine involving running, dynamic stretching, and ladders exercises. The daily routine helped students gain body control and increase their fitness levels.
Pathways and levels were introduced through obstacle courses that reinforced the use of balance and body control. As students gained body control and locomotor concepts, they applied their skills into various dodging and fleeing games to practice spatial awareness. Spatial awareness promoted safety and personal space that were necessary for our future units involving station rotation and use of equipment. The activities that reinforced spatial awareness were Mr.Fox, Sharks and Minnows, Capture the Flag, Cone Tag, and parachutes. Bucket-stacking activities reinforced patterns and balance too.
The recognition of healthy eating habits and daily exercise was promoted through games like grocery shopping. Students were able to recognize healthy food choices and the importance of exercising weekly. While, students separated food groups, they utilized their different locomotor skills and pathways to travel.
As students gained body and control and strength, activities were transformed into throwing and catching stations. The levels of difficulty increased week to week for throwing and catching stations. The progression went from bean bags, yarn balls, and rubber balls to tennis balls, tail balls, and reaction balls. As students were able to progress, they improved their eye-hand coordination and recognized the importance of being in a proper athletic position to be able to catch and throw at various stationary and moving targets.
The basic throwing and catching process was applied games, such as Human Baskets, Monster Ball, Cleaning out the Backyard, and bowling. All games encouraged students to transfer their weight properly to make accurate throws using an underhand and overhand throw. The underhand and overhand motion was used to introduce students to serving a volleyball. The Kindergartners used a beach ball to serve. The 1st and 2nd graders transitioned into using a volleyball from a beach ball.
3rd through 5th Grade
The third through fifth graders started the semester with team-building activities, such as Lava Rocks, Human Chain, Capture the Flag, and Tic-Tac-Toe to increase the concept of teamwork and critical thinking. Students increase their agility and fitness levels by performing ladder exercises for their upper and lower body. Students made vast improvements in their Fitnessgram assessments, which were taken in August and November. Many students learned the concept of pacing themselves and improving their form, allowing them to be efficient in their movements. As students improved their muscular strength and endurance, modified team and lifetime sports were incorporated into the curriculum that encouraged the development of motor skills, sportsmanship, and game strategies.
The third and fourth grade multi-age classes experimented with speedball in their first unit. Speedball was a combination of soccer, basketball, and football concepts. Speedball helped students review proper throwing, catching, and kicking techniques. Students had to compile all their skills to execute proper offensive and defensive strategies to play a functional game of speedball. Students applied the concept of passing and moving to open space on offense. Students gained knowledge on how to properly mark up on an opponent rather than following the ball.
Following the speedball unit, the concept of an athletic position was reinforced through Wall Ball, Reaction Ball, Triangle Ball and Tchoukball unit. Students practiced throwing at different angles and distances off the pyramid structure, rebounder net, and wall while they were offense. The athletic position was utilized when students had to react to an opponent's throw off the different surfaces. The concept of spatial awareness was visible as there was constant change of offensive and defensive possession during a game. Students were able to properly react to balls.
The fifth graders exhibited their throwing, catching, and kicking abilities through a modified handball and ultimate frisbee unit. Modified handball was a combination of soccer, basketball, football, and soccer skills. Students were able to demonstrate their knowledge of passing and moving with or without a ball. Multiple balls were used during a round of handball, which forced students to communicate with their teammates on defensive and offensive possessions. During possessions, each team experimented with their own strategies of getting the ball down the field efficiently. After students gained the concept of teamwork, proper spacing was reinforced during our ultimate frisbee unit.
In the Ultimate Frisbee unit, students learned a backhand and forehand throw at different distances. Catching the frisbees at different distances and speeds helped increase eye-hand coordination. While performing the skills, the fifth graders were able to pass and move without frisbee. Many students figured out that it is harder to play defense against an offense that is spread out and constantly moving.
Recently, all 3rd through 5th graders finished their volleyball unit. We focused on the underhand and overhand serve in the beginning of the unit, because students realized a rally cannot start without a serve going over the net. As students were able to serve, we started working on passing the volleyball with a bump or set. The last element of a rally we worked was a spike, so students attempted a bump, set, and spike sequence in an actual game.