Move Them or Lose Them

Students working out with TeacherP.E. is exactly what it stands for Physical Education, but from a student’s perspective it’s P.E.N (physical education now) and rightfully so. Students sit attentively all day in class, when they come to PE, their objective is to have fun and blow off a little steam. Unfortunately for them, a typical Texas school day consists of 8 hours, yet students attend a formal PE class only three sessions a week, and as little as 45 minutes per class. Students frequently struggle to achieve the standard 60 minutes of daily activity, so utilization of every moment of formal PE class is of the utmost importance.

Common mistakes I tend to see PE teachers make are requiring students to sit in squad lines to take roll, give long lectures about what the students will do for the day, and simply distract from the task at hand, to be physical active and engaged. This antiquated procedure results restlessness amongst students and only adds frustration to the teacher as they struggle to hold the students attention and potential engagement.

Criticisms I’ve often heard Physical Educators iterate is that it requires far too much added work, extra equipment and will be more of a hassle then it is worth. However, my observation is the advantage of instant PE activities is to get the entire class moving. There is very little teacher involvement and it often can be achieved with little or no formal equipment. Keep in mind that it’s Instant Activity, so the students are engaged physically for a matter of minutes. My typical instant PE activities are vigorous and last upwards of a continuous three minute block. During that short time, the activities promote heart rate acceleration which increases the amount of blood being pumped to the brain. This creates a more attentive student who’s ready to engage in the daily lesson. They can’t help but to stay focused, quiet and attentive to instruction because they’ve become physically activated and physiologically engaged. I then use their recovery period to begin my brief but comprehensive instructional session. Once I’ve completed my instructions to the class they’ve recovered, regained their second wind and are again ready to become active.

The name of the game is to use every available moment to physically engage my students, help create a sense of accountability pertaining exercise and a love of P.E. I often find myself borrowing instant PE activities ideas from fellow PE teachers but my favorite place to find creative and engaging instant PE activities is PE Universe. If you need ideas on what type of activities you can instantly do in your gym here is a link form PE Universe https://www.peuniverse.com/search/?query=instant+activities. Remember you can take other ideas you learn from others and make it your own.

What are some instant PE activities that you use with your students?

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