About the Author: Mark Sharpley
- Jefferson Academy High School (CO)
- Physical Education Instructor
- Boys / Girls Head Varsity Basketball Coach
- JAM Basketball: President / Executive Director
Lifetime Fitness Approach – Before & During Covid
Jefferson Academy’s fantastic relationship with PLT4M began in 2017. Our physical education department and coaching philosophies aligned with PLT4M’s values of ‘fit for life,’ ‘fundamentals matter,’ ‘be better,’ ‘a partnership is key,’ and ‘serving the total athlete.’
Jefferson Academy’s Life Time Fitness Approach
Our vision is to create a lifetime fitness approach for our students. PLT4M’s innovative programs help us meet our vision and goals for our students. What PLT4M was able to accomplish during the past COVID 19 quarter took creative thinking from a company that understood adversity. PLT4M has shown it is a company that continues to test new ideas.
I am excited to say we share the same vision for assisting students to be fearless in their quest for building confidence.
We first integrated the PLT4M program in our weight training courses along with basketball and track programs a few years ago. In the past two years, we also implemented the program in our fitness challenge days for Physical Education.
PLT4M’s web site/phone app and versatile online curriculum have provided Jefferson Academy students and athletes great opportunities for personal gains and confidence building. At JA, we use multi-fitness testing exercises to view student achievement.
During the school year, we have added the fitness testing components in our PLT4M analytics section that include:
- Fitness Gram (push-ups/curl-ups/pacer test)
- 1-minute Jump Rope
- 2-minute Burpees
- 1-minute air squat
- Pro agility shuttle
- Plank hold
- Squat therapy
- Flexed Arm Hang
- Pull up max
- Dot Drill
- Illinois agility test
- Track times in mile / 800 / 400 / 200 / 100 / meter runs
The balanced instruction of the PLT4M curriculum serves all abilities in our weight training courses. Our students with diverse skills, from beginning weight trainers to advanced, thrive in confidence-building instruction and participation within their chosen PLT4M curriculum. The weight training course includes student-athletes from all different sports, training in either off-season or in-season PLT4M programs.
And while it was great for class, COVID quickly changed our ability to see our students every day!
COVID Time – Jefferson Academy’s 4th quarter of 2020.
Mid-March 2020, the high school’s across America, prepared for the start of the fourth quarter on the school calendar. Three-quarters of the academic year had been completed, and the accomplishment of another school year was close to a finish.
Abruptly, our Nation’s schools had the COVID-19 ball dropped on them, and physical education like all other curricula in the blink of an eye, technically, had to be shifted to remote instruction.
We got word that our schools would be going remote but were also met with the information that PLT4M would be releasing ‘remote training’ options that would help us transition quickly. I messaged my colleague’s words of positivity!
Hey Team, we got this! We will be able to take on the challenges of remote learning! With the vision and continued excellence from PLT4M, we have a foundation for remote learning! I emailed our administrative team, making them aware the JA High School Physical Education Department will seamlessly roll into a smooth remote learning transition, thanks to PLT4M.
Check out how your school can use PLT4M this coming school year!
Google Classroom And PLT4M
Using different modes of communication, including email, google classroom, and PLT4M, I was able to give my students a robust offering of Physical Education curriculum.
- Remote Mobility sessions were assigned on Tuesday and Thursday.
- Thursdays’ students would complete three fitness challenges and record on google spreadsheets.
- Wednesday and Friday, I assigned Remote Fitness Workouts. (Students interested in more challenging remote workouts selected the remote athlete training program PLT4M also provided).
- Each week one PLT4M remote assignment article was assigned with questions utilizing google forms.
- Each day in the stream section of google classroom, I would include PLT4M YouTube videos for each workout. YouTube and google images provided great educational tools for trivia and sports learning.
Feedback And Looking Forward
Several JA students said they felt more focused and engaged during their other remote classes after doing PLT4M workouts over the course of the quarter. The end of the quarter survey concluded that 90% of all students Strongly Agreed that PLT4M remote learning was challenging and provided an excellent alternative online physical education experience.
PLT4M became our physical education lifeforce during this past distance learning quarter.
What could have been a real struggle was made possible with the right technology we had previously implemented in the regular school year. Whatever the coming school year has in store, we will be ready!