This week for the Featured PE Teacher section on the PE Central Facebook page, the spotlight is on Christopher Infante:
About Christoper Infante
I teach grades Pre-K through 4th in two different schools in my district. These grades also include MD, ABA, BD, ED and LLD classes. Because I teach in two different schools, I teach 632 students. I teach at Bryant Elementary School and Lowell Elementary School, both located in Teaneck, NJ. My title is Travel Physical Education teacher. We run on a 6 day A-F schedule and I am in one school on B, C, D days and the other on E, F, A days. I have been teaching full time for 4 years, all with Teaneck. I have been so grateful for having this stability and being able to watch my students grow.
Current Lesson Plan
My current lesson plan involves use of the Nintendo Wii and Wii Fit. I use the games on Wii Fit to peak the students’ attention, since they are all familiar with video games. I use the Basic Run Plus program to show the students how to keep a good pace. During the school year, they have a lot of lessons outside running so I like to start the school year by introducing pace and having them practice with the Wii. The kids have a blast and get great exercise without realizing it!
PE Focus for 2017:
The focus on the year is SOARing through PE. Being Safe, Organized, Accountable and Respectful is always touched upon in each lesson. At the beginning and end of each lesson, I review how they can all “soar” through the lesson and then we either begin the lesson or wrap up. This focus allows the students to always self-reflect on their actions and also give appropriate constructive criticism to another peer if he or she isn’t “soaring”.
Favorite PE Unit
My favorite unit is definitely the Exer-games unit. It isn’t a set month or week in the school year because there are so many different units that can be incorporated into Exer-games. My college professor Dr. Stephen Yang was HUGE on exer-gaming and it was something I wanted to bring into my gym. I’ve used the Nintendo Wii and Microsoft Xbox to supplement my track unit, running, throwing and catching, and dodging. The students have a great time doing these activities because it’s something that they can do at home rain or shine.
What is your favorite part about being a PE teacher?
My favorite part of being a PE teacher is being able to be silly with the kids and being able to teach such a diverse group of learners. Being able to teach 632 students allows me to see students of all backgrounds and learn so much about who they are. It also allows me to find different ways of teaching since they all learn differently. Also, I have found that if the PE teacher shows unlimited enthusiasm, then the students will follow. I have dressed up for “Character Day” for the students and also challenged my students to raise a certain dollar amount for Jump Rope for Heart and their prize would be me dressing up as the JRFH mascot during class time. When posed with this challenge, my students showed great work ethic with fundraising and raised over $6,000 which was over $2,000 more than the year before. I dressed up as Rory the Lion for them and the students could not have been more excited to see the prize for their outstanding accomplishments! These things may seem small to some teachers, but to students, some of whom may need a smile that particular day, it will mean the world.