Yoga has become a great way for classroom teachers, PE teachers, and even after school coordinators to help students de-stress from their day, re-energize and clear their minds to focus. Yoga creates the support for students to not just build up their minds, but their bodies as well, better preparing them for their future. Below we list the 7 major benefits of incorporating yoga into the classroom, introduce you to our friends at Yoga Foster, and share how one teacher is using yoga in her classroom.
Our friends over at Yoga Foster advocate and heavily support the use of yoga throughout the school day and have success story after success story from educators that have used their program. We are so inspired by the work Yoga Foster is doing that we’ve even partnered with them to create an online course for PE Teachers (which can also be tailored to after school professionals and classroom teachers) that walks you through introducing yoga to your students. Continue reading →
If you’re reading this, chances are you just got your very first physical education job. Congratulations and welcome to an amazing profession where you get to change lives and make a real difference in the world. The sky is literally the limit when it comes to what you can do as a physical education teacher. Whether you’re just out of school, changing careers, or transitioning from the classroom to a gymnasium, you’re entering this profession at a time when what we do matters more than ever.
You will have the most lasting impact on a child’s life and mental well-being. As if this prospect was not overwhelming enough, you are starting a job that comes with many new and exciting experiences, procedures, and protocols. The first year of teaching is very important. It is during this time that you are indoctrinated into the world of teaching through on-the-job training. Everything you learned in your physical education program will align with the reality of the school and district you are now a part of. As a new teacher, there will be many variables out of your control that can make it hard to achieve that altruistic goal all teachers strive for: positively impacting lives. Continue reading →
Think back on your Field Day events from your school days. What do you remember? Many of you will remember how much fun you had, the games you played, and spending time with your classmates. Field Day is a great chance for students to let loose, get active, and have a good time. And at the end of the day, it is all about creating a memorable experience.
Now think about your planning process for Field Day. Do you ask other teachers for help? Can you have an outdoor event? Would you just throw some activities on a sheet of paper and draw a map with a schedule? Will you reach out to the community to ask for donations? Do you think about alerting parents that children will get wet if you have water activities so there are no surprises when they come home with dirty clothes? The level of planning you do and the amount of detail and communication you put into planning a Field Day have a direct correlation between the kind of memories a child will have decades from their elementary school years. Continue reading →
In an ideal situation, every school would have the perfect number of books, teachers, technology, food, and the amenities students deserve. However, we do not live in an ideal world. In many cases, schools that were built up to a half a century ago or more are the norm. They come overcrowded with temporary units to add additional space. A 2013 report card on the America’s infrastructure gave the schools infrastructure a D-plus.
The report card states, “Almost half of America’s public school buildings were built to educate the baby boomers – a generation that is now retiring from the workforce. Public school enrollment is projected to gradually increase through 2019, yet state and local school construction funding continues to decline.” “Experts now estimate the investment needed to modernize and maintain our nation’s school facilities is at least $270 billion or more. However, due to the absence of national data on school facilities for more than a decade, a complete picture of the condition of our nation’s schools remains mostly unknown.” Continue reading →
It is everyone’s job, including PE teachers, to prepare students with the skills to succeed in today’s job market. Aside from math, literacy is the most fundamental skill any student needs to succeed in a global economy.
Common Core – The Future of PE
As times have changed, so too has the role of physical educators. My first physical education teaching job was in a very old and small Catholic private school. The school was virtually on an island surrounded by three streets and a shopping center—and there was no gym. All I had to work with was a parking lot with a backdrop of a major discount thrift store and a small room with a big pole in the middle of it. If a soccer ball was kicked too hard, it would wind up in the street. To say it was ideal is a misnomer.
I had been hired to replace the teacher who founded the physical education course at the school. The teacher was a bit old school. She recommended I do games like push cans with sticks to build fine motor skills. The equipment was severely lacking of anything modern. My primary focus at the time was to modernize the program and teach sport skills. Fast forward to today and it is no longer just enough to teach sport skills. It is no longer enough to focus on physical skills alone. The new expectation, outside of a lifetime fitness-based approach to a physical education program, is the integration of common core subject areas into PE. Continue reading →