Sheena’s Movement Journal – My First PE Lesson

My practicum is at a private school, so they have specialist teachers that teach PE. Luckily, the PE teacher for my grade five class was happy to let me teach a class today. It was based on Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU). We started with a tail chase game, which was played in pairs. Students tucked a scarf into their shorts and the aim of the game was to remove their opponent’s scarf without losing theirs. We discussed the tactics they used to be successful in the game. Students said that being successful in this game involved constantly moving, moving backwards and placing their body between the scarf and the opponent. Then we talked about applying these skills to a game of soccer. The next game we played was four goal soccer. I have included a video below. We started with one ball and ended with four balls in play. I stopped the game so we could discuss the tactics again and the students talked about the same skills we talked about earlier. We also noticed that some students were not playing fairly, so we talked about being principled in PE by not cheating. We have been talking about being principled throughout this week because it is the IB Learner Profile of the month. We played another game and did a quick debrief at the end of the class.

Overall, I think it went well. The games allowed for maximum participation and students were active throughout the lesson. Having a small number of players on each team and adding more balls to the soccer game made it almost impossible to be inactive. Additionally, the students grasped the strategies that were required to be successful in playing soccer. However, I would have liked to see more students participating in the discussions about tactics. They were easily distracted in the gym and it was difficult to get them to sit still. They just wanted to get up and play another game. The PE teacher suggested adding an incentive to the discussion by saying that we would play the next game when we figured out what tactics we learned in the previous game. This is something I will implement in my next lesson. If anyone else has any other ideas, please let me know!

October 28th – Gemma’s Movement Journal

Dance isn’t something that comes naturally to me. The only time I believe we’ve done dance in PE was during the month of December, in preparation for the Christmas Party where we would have a Ceilidh. Practicing involved having the boys line up on one side of the hall and the girls on the other, with each taking turns to select a partner. Possibly the most awkward thing ever when you’re in your pre-teens! So seeing dance in a different way was great fun. Everyone was moving and having a great time, and I felt like we’d achieved something by the end of the class. I thought the ladies did an excellent job leading, and I have to also give a shout out to Meghan for being such a ‘risk-taker’!

This week during practicum, we’ve been able to see how physical education is being implemented in the schools. Southpointe has 4 specialists who cover the K – 12 years. The first day when I walked into a PE class the students were sitting individually on their ipads reflecting on videos of their batting movements. I think it’s safe to say that physical education has definitely changed from when I went to school!


I’ve been able to watch my class transition through skill building drills to mini-games, before participating in full class batting/fielding games. They even played Chuck the Chicken! Not only that but they have also been connecting to their next Unit of Inquiry (body systems). How did their muscular system/central nervous system/respiratory system help them achieve that movement?  How are they connected? Thus, the students already have some knowledge before they even get started! It’s great seeing everything that we’ve been discussing during our classes being implemented in the field.

Post-lesson Reflection Journal Week 8: Dance

I had so much fun co-teaching this class! We were all so pleased and thankful for everyone’s enthusiasm and participation. I feel like that was a huge contributor to the success of our lesson.

We tried to keep things interactive, accessible and fun while also hitting the appropriate physical education competencies, which I think we were able to accomplish pretty well. It was important for us to scaffold the moves so that everyone had the opportunity to build up to the full dance, and express themselves to the best of their ability. My part consisted of brainstorming lesson ideas with the group, co-writing the summary, suggesting the use of apps in assessment and dividing the group, in addition to teaching my portion of the lesson and leading my small group discussion.

Our group gelled well in terms of planning, and we agreed on most aspects of the process. As soon as we had addressed the competencies and figured out a main focus for our session, the details came fairly easily. We have relatively similar approaches to teaching, planning and what we would like our students to get out of the lesson.

I feel like the students responded positively overall. Everyone seemed engaged, and were able to grasp the choreography and challenge themselves to complete each activity to the best of their ability. The discussion ran smoothly, and the group had many good ideas and input about technology in the classroom.

Next time, I would look at tightening up some of the transitions, for instance sending smaller groups of students to collect props. I think we provided moves and options for a variety of skill levels, and scaffolded appropriately, but I might also have included some further options for students of all skill and comfort levels, such as an alternative to the dance off at the end.

Gymnastics/Dance week – Michelle Parker

This week was a really great week of PE for me. We started with gymnastics. This group was very thorough in their lesson. I learnt a lot about safety when it comes to teaching gymnastics. It is important to be thoughtful and thorough in foreseeing any safety risks and doing all that is possible to prevent students from getting hurt. When using large apparatus a teacher must set out firm rules and guidelines in order to ensure student safety.  Educational Gymnastics was an important new concept for me. I really like how it focuses on physical literacy as well as gymnastics in a way that is fun for students. Gymnastics is also a fun way for students to learn more about their body and fundamental movement skills.

The next group presented on dance. This lesson was lots of fun and stretched me! I really do not feel comfortable dancing in front of people and find it uncomfortable. This week I was able to let go of that as I started to grasp the importance of dance. It is not just about learning the skills but also teaching confidence in students. Dance is also a fun way for students to further learn about rhythm and how to coordinate their movements with a beat. Dance could further activities they learn in music or band class.

I also wanted to make not of the group’s information about technology. I had not thought about using technology in the classroom but after seeing it used for our class I really got to see how it can be used positively in a gym class. Great work!

Session 8

What is the purpose of dance?

Dance “fulfills social, recreational, competitive, religious, therapeutic, and artistic functions” (Robinson & Randall, 2014, p.211). Therefore, dance serves many purposes that go above and beyond the other fundamental movement skills. Furthermore, dance can easily be integrated across curriculum due to its versatile nature. Dance in closely linked to cultural practices, is a partner to music, and is a form of emotional and artistic expression. The senses of sight, sound, and touch are all heavily engaged through the activity of dance. One of the wonderful things about dance is that it is very accessible for a wide range of abilities and interests. In many contexts, there is not a “right” way to dance, as it is based upon individual self-expression through movement. “Dance education is valued because it offers the student a different way of knowing, a means of thinking, and a form for expression and understanding of self and others, issues and events” (Robinson & Randall, 2014, p.211-212). When students are able to invent their own dance routines, they are given ownership over their own learning, empowering them within their physical literacy. Furthermore, this allows for creativity to play a large role in PE, which is an important skill that can often be overlooked in this area of learning. When educators use dance lessons to incorporate students’ cultural backgrounds, the purpose of dance becomes one of identity and community building. In my opinion, dance is the most versatile of the fundamental movement concepts in that it can create the most personal meaning, reaching the deepest levels of understanding and growth (of both self and others).

Knowing Your Learners & Reflective practice

How do I plan for a quality physical education (PE) program?

In order to plan for a quality PE program, teachers need to ask themselves what it is that they want their students to learn, how they plan on assessing whether or not students have properly learned their lesson, and how they are going to initiate and carry out students’ understandings. So, as this demonstrates, planning, teaching, and evaluating are the steps involved in the instructional process. Another aspect of establishing a quality PE program is evaluating the individual strengths and requirements of students in order to determine any modification that should be made to lessons. Each province provides teachers with curriculum documents outlining specific learning outcomes for each grade. These guidelines help teachers with the planning process about what it is they should expect students to learn. The curriculum documents are very general, allowing for teachers to be creative and individualize their lessons. Effective teachers will design lessons that will be the most beneficial for their groups of students, taking into account their various interests and needs. Furthermore, teachers need to take into consideration the school’s policies and values. Some schools may be more sports bases whereas others will place more focus on movement and games. Being mindful to stay away from “hall of shame” activities, ensuring that each lesson is inclusive and meaningful is yet another factor in developing quality PE programs.

What are the steps to the Instructional Process?


The instruction process discussed in ch.5 begins with establishing a safe (emotionally, physically, and mentally) environment that meets the needs of individual students while fulfilling the prescribed learning outcomes of the provincial curriculum. This requires teachers to be flexible with their plans, allowing for students to play a role in the process and adapting lessons to meet their needs. This will also encourage the active engagement of students, building up on their intrinsic motivation for PE. Furthermore, the text highlights the point that, “outstanding physical educators implicitly and explicitly address the affective learning domain, recognizing that teaching is about developing positive relationships with and among students” (Robinson & Randall, p.78).


A crucial step towards developing positive relationships involves effective communication skills. The textbook highlights key communication skills such as “clarity, demonstration and visual aids, cues, questioning, observation, and feedback” (Robinson & Randall, p.79). Not only do these skills help to establish positive relationships in class, but they also help enhance meaning making and understanding. Furthermore, through positive communication strategies and relationship building, students will become more engaged in activities, which is crucial for accomplishing the stated goals of a lesson.


The instructional framework is another key element in the instructional process. The steps involved are: The introductory phase (warm-ups and overview); New skills phase (explanation/demonstration); Consolidation phase (students practice and teachers give feedback); Application phase (apply new skills in a more independent setting); Closure (students are provided feedback on the activities) (Robinson & Randall, p.87).


What are the different teaching styles?


The textbook outlines the 11 different teaching styles proposed by Mosston and Ashworth (2001).


Command style of is teacher-directed where the teacher delivers the instructions to learners and the students are expected to respond accordingly. This is a very straightforward approach that follows the teacher’s plan very closely. “Teacher feedback is limited” (Robinson & Randall, p.88) with this type of instruction, maximizing the students time on task.


Practice style is a slightly less teacher-directed approach. In this teaching style, learners are given slightly more independence by allowing for them to set their own pace for activity time. There is more of a focus on individual practice and the teacher provides students with individual feedback.


Reciprocal style is more social in nature. In this type of teaching style, the students are grouped in two’s or three’s. One student does activities while the other(s) observe and give feedback rather than the teacher providing feedback. Although the teacher communicates with the student who are observing, they mostly place responsibility in the hands of students.


A Self-Check style is when students assess themselves as opposed to teacher assessment. This allows for the students to gain a better understanding on their own personal strengths, weaknesses, and progress. Teachers provide feedback for students at the end of a lesson.


Inclusion style takes account of the varying abilities in a group. This teaching style allows for accommodations to be made in order to increase or decrease the complexity of an activity in order to meet individual’s needs. This is a more self-assessed/directed style of teaching.


The remaining teaching styles are inquiry-teaching styles. They range on a spectrum from Guided Discovery to Self-teaching. A Guided Discovery style, teachers guide students through a series of steps, offering frequent feedback and working along with the students throughout the process. Convergent Discovery style involved the teacher presenting the problem/task and the students figure out the process. Whereas Convergent Discovery style involves only one solution to a problem, Divergent Discovery style considers many different solutions to a problem. In this teaching style, teachers may model one response but mostly encourage students’ responses to the problem. Learner-Designed Individual Program style allows students to take control of their learning experiences under the teacher’s broad topic area. Learner-initiated style is when the learners make all of the decisions and the teacher is a facilitative resource. Self-teaching style is when the student is the teacher (and is “outside the realm of physical education classes”(p.89).


Movement Journal on Dance and Gymnastics

I really enjoyed the gymnastics and dance this week, both groups did a fantastic job!

I was super impressed that the dance group incorporated technology into their group-teach. I had never associated physical education with digital literacy, so to see how it was used both through a headset when running an activity (made listening much easier) and when sorting us into groups through an iPad app, was very cool. I am not very tech savvy, so I think I will definitely start looking into some of the apps they shared with us on the hand-out and consider how I could better incorporate technology into lesson plans. I really liked the sorting app as it was much faster than counting out teams of 4.

I enjoyed the group discussion for gymnastics. Our group talked about liability and safety because gymnastics can be a riskier unit to run as there is more equipment and chance for injury. As a future teacher, I have to really consider the environment I am choosing for the lesson and how I want to best set up the activity so that it is inclusive and adaptable for all of the different students’ capabilities. Some examples include setting up the gym in a way that you can observe all of your students (using half a gym), and using padding on the floor around balance beams and equipment where there is a chance someone may fall.

I also liked that both groups focused on scaffolding and building up to the different movements in step by step processes that allowed us to practice and feel comfortable before moving on.

Gymnastics reflection

It is important to create a safe, inclusive and respectful environment in your class. In order to do so, you must be aware of your students capabilities and disabilities. Being a flexible teacher and adapting the environment to your students needs such as, adding extra padding, cones and making boundaries. The teacher must be considerate of time and duration of each activity to make sure the students are engaged throughout. Having set rules and regulation in the class will regulate the students engagement (knowing when to freeze or stop, knowing what is off limits). As a teacher you must be aware of you students abilities and be able to make modifications to the criteria to create a safe, challenging and provide opportunities for success.

When an educator includes large apparatuses within a class, the safety level increases. The educator must implement rules for the use of the apparatus. An educator may be concerned with the supervision around the apparatus, especially if there is many large pieces in use. Make sure to have an adequate amount of mats surrounding the large apparatus to protect students falls.

Educational gymnastics encourages students to think critically and creatively about their body movements. Embracing all variety of basic movement patters and skills will generate an inclusive and creative environment.

Many schools do not have gymnastics equipment however, this should not deter the educator from teaching gymnastics. The educator can focus on body movement and be creative with the equipment which the school has such as, benches, hoola-hoops etc.