There is a lot to cover under the umbrella of Physical Education, from yoga, to team sports, to rhythmic activities, and more. It can seem like a challenge to fit all of these topics into a solid PE curriculum, but PE teacher, Brandon Siegel, embraces that challenge.
Brandon explains that offering variety in PE allows him to meet the standards of a quality fitness program while also giving students every opportunity to discover the fitness path that works best for them, in their pursuit of lifelong fitness.
Check out this excerpt from a recent webinar.
“Within a physical education program, your ultimate goal is to produce physically literate individuals, right? You want people to graduate with the knowledge and skills necessary to lead healthy lives, into their adult lives. So, what does it mean to be healthy? Is it physical health, mental health? Everything in between? And what are the different components that you need to hit? I mean, there’s a certain way to do calculus. There’s lots of different ways to stay healthy throughout your adult life.
So it’s kind of twofold; 1. You want to hit all of your standards, make sure that you have a quality physical education program in place. 2. You just want to provide a variety because you never know what the kid might bite onto and absolutely start loving as far as being physically active. If I were to just focus on strength training as my primary focus in PE, I would lose some kids, you know, because that’s not going to be everyone’s passion. So just by hitting that variety, not only do you hit your standards, but you also increase the ability of kids to find something that they truly love and will hold onto, into their adult lives.
Especially as kids get older, I think a lot of people find that they become increasingly unmotivated to participate in physical activity, and especially during the school day. So by providing a lot of choice, a lot of variety, and giving the kids some ownership over what they’re going to do within their PE class, that kind of helps self motivate them, I guess I should say. And taking ownership and saying, “Oh, I wasn’t assigned this. I got to choose this. This is what I chose to do.”
There’s kids that are unmotivated in my class at times, but I really think providing a variety,and adding a lot of choice, really helps the kids stay motivated and helps them find their path. You know, what are they going to enjoy doing? I’ve had athletes who tried the yoga portion and they absolutely love it. They’re like, “Okay, this is something that I’m going to do after I graduate. I’m going to go take a yoga class in Omaha the next time I’m there.” So it’s great when you hear things like that because a student-athlete isn’t going to train like a student-athlete for their entire lives. They’re eventually going to have to move on and do something else.” – Brandon Siegel