I felt that our team-teach on Outdoor Education went really well! It was refreshing to be outside to do a lesson, and the feedback from TCs participating in the lesson was that is was very fun and engaging. Particularly, comments that the lesson could lead well into a cross-curricular lesson, and that many were interested in doing the same lesson in their own practicums were very encouraging and in-line with some of the goals we had as a group.
One thing that I noticed about the planning process for an outdoor lesson was that it was very easy to overthink things. I often caught myself thinking about how to make the lesson as “outdoorsy” and rich as possible, but really the most important thing is just to get kids outside. In fact, it is a very positive thing to be able to get kids outside without making a big deal out of it. We want to encourage our students just to get outside at any chance they get – they don’t need to wait until its time for “outdoor education” initiated only by an adult or teacher with their own motivations and goals.
In the end, though, I feel our lesson ended up being a great balance between a more formally presented outdoor education lesson and a fun way to get our class outside. If I were to change anything about the lesson it would have been to do the whole thing, including the instant activity and the introduction outside as well. We structured it with the first two components inside to help with our transition, but perhaps we could have just asked the class to quickly walk out into the courtyard and start our lesson there.
Overall, doing outdoor education was really fun and I’m looking forward to teaching PE, both indoors and out, on my practicum.
On behalf of myself, Cristina, Lisa and Audrey – Thanks everyone for participating with such enthusiasm in our Outdoor Education lesson! We had a wonderful time teaching you! If you’d like to check out our lesson plan, simply download it from the link below 🙂
EDCP 320 Team Teach – Outdoor Education
Team Teach Group 5 – Chapter 4 and 5 Summary
Lisa Jensen, Cristina Moretti, Christine Park and Audrey Sargent
- Which considerations must a physical health educator take into account while planning a lesson or unit, and why? Are there any considerations that you would add to the ones discussed in the textbook?
- How might physical health educators communicate with and give feedback to students effectively?
- Why is it important to reflect on different teaching styles and take risks in your teaching methods?
Ch 4: Planning for Instruction
- The “instructional process” according to Randall and Robinson has three components: planning, teaching, and assessment (p. 47).
- Planning has to start from the intended learning outcomes, that is “what students are expected “to know, value, and be able to do” (p. 49). While the learning outcomes derive from the curriculum, it is up to the educator to choose which activities will help their students reach those goals. To ensure that outcomes are met, both a long-term plan, spanning the entire year, and more specific unit and lesson plans need to be articulated.
- These are some aspects/elements that need to be taken into account when planning:
- Documents and guidelines such as the curriculum and policies
- The attributes and culture of the school and of its surrounding community
- The needs, interests, and age of students; teachers must also consider carefully if what they teach benefits all students or whether it disadvantages some of them
- The knowledge, values, and approach of the teacher
- When, where, how long, and with which resources the educator will teach P.E.
- The “hidden curriculum” (p. 53), the messages and values that are indirectly transmitted to the students during the lessons
- While outcomes constitute the general goals, objectives (that Randall and Robinson divide into “motor, cognitive, and affective”, p. 56) are smaller in scope and refer to shorter periods of time. They are the starting points for units and lessons plans.
Ch 5: Teaching
– Communication is a crucial aspect of teaching. To be effective, educators should communicate clearly, demonstrate movements and techniques, use cues throughout the lesson, and check that students have an understanding of the activities and are engaged. Actively observing students is also important for an effective communication.
– When teaching, educators should offer positive, specific feedback as soon as possible after the activity. Rather than always telling what they saw, they can ask student what they think they can do to improve.
– It is important for teachers to reflect on their teaching style and on the relationship this establishes with the student. Teaching styles can be more teacher centered, or give more freedom and responsibility to the students. The “Gradual Release of Responsibility” model, for example, encourages intrinsic rather than extrinsic motivation and gives students the opportunity to direct some of their learning.
– Educators need to set up routines and rules to make the PE class more predictable and effective.
– When organizing students, teachers should be aware of a variety of group formations and how these will help students learn (ie. formations for instruction, game play)
– Minimizing transition time is important to maximizing learning/play time. Transitions should be well thought out and students should know what to do during a transition.
I’m going to focus on one particular guiding question for this post – what are the conditions for including all learners in game play? I feel like this is a really important part of the teaching model we focused on this week: Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU). One condition is having games where a clear “winner” is not a focus of the game. I thought the invasion game lesson, Alien Invasion/Prairie Dog Pick-off, was a great example of this – the students who won the game in the end included students whose skittles had already been knocked over, so there was no identifiable winner. Also key to including all learners is to minimize down-time and have movement be something that is constantly happening in a PE lesson. This avoids turning part of the class into spectators, which makes many kids nervous, and keeps as much time as possible open for students to explore and practice different movements.
In general, I think Teaching Games for Understanding is a model because of its emphasis on experiencing and learning. Rather than a focus on mastering sports, TGfU focuses on the lifelong benefits of healthy activity and getting kids moving in fun and engaging ways. I really like the fact that the TGfU model gets the kids playing games right away – it takes the pressure off working towards playing the game “perfectly” as the ultimate goal and instead focuses back on the experience of the learner in trying different ways of being active.
Physical literacy is an important concept to grasp as an educator – for me, it’s so easy to get caught up facilitating a game or watching to make sure everyone’s following the rules that I can lose track of what the kids are supposed to be learning! I think the focus in this class on keeping things simple is helping with this concept for me. PE isn’t about kids mastering the rules and skills for sports. That can be involved, but what’s most important is giving kids opportunities to move and explore different ways of being healthy for life. I think that both of the groups that have done their team teach so far have done an excellent job on teaching lessons that are a good balance of simple and engaging, and they’ve been really accessible for multiple ability levels.
The readings for this week addressed multiliteracies, a concept that has been popping up in multiple courses (I’m starting to see a pattern…) I feel very encouraged by the fact that this is such a focus in PE. I find it very helpful to structure my thinking on making PE accessible by thinking about the different literacies involved in creating a PE lesson – does it teach movement skills, teamwork, healthy lifestyles, including others? These are important skills that help kids learn to be healthy and active, but also support learning in other curricular environments.
The first class of EDUC 320 was a great experience, and has me excited for teaching physical education to my future students. However, reading the PE Hall of Shame articles gave me some particular insight into what to keep in mind when thinking of lessons – games such as dodgeball and capture the flag that I had played as a child, and then proceeded to facilitate for children I worked with as an adult, do not encourage involved, active participation or teamwork, which can leave students feeling frustrated and disengaged from physical activity.
Thinking of my own experiences, I was always more comfortable doing solo activities (ie. hiking), where I could set the pace and goals for myself. However, I used to (and largely still do) avoid team sports (ie. soccer), mostly because of a fear of failing at the activity in front of my peers. I have below average depth perception so some activities such as catching or kicking tended to be challenging for me. However, I often found that I would not be given any accommodation for this and would instead feel judged. I think this mindset is reflective of many learners who may dislike their physical education classes – PE that doesn’t take into account the unique needs of each learner does not set them up for success to be confident and participatory. The purpose of PE should be to give kids opportunities to explore different physical literacies and learn how to keep themselves healthy, not to discourage physical activity.