Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Believe in Change!

PE 2020 Vision: The New Era of Physical Education

For physical educators today, there is a constant struggle to defend their field as a part of a well-rounded educational curriculum. This is in large part due to our own malpractice. Naturally, no matter the field, there are individuals who are in it for the wrong reasons. Unfortunately, these people give the people who are in the field for the right reasons a huge uphill battle to fight. Sadly, my fellow physical educators, we have done this to ourselves. We have allowed physical educators to go far too long without being accountable for their student’s learning. We have not deviated from the “tired six” sport-centered curriculum that plagues many school districts today. We have not tied physical education to a social need that we intend to focus on. We are allowing schools to include physical education as a “special” subject, robbing us of the true meaning of the field which is clearly depicted in its name, education through the physical. Fortunately, there is hope for our field. Through the tireless efforts of committed teachers, higher education faculty, and organizations such as New York State AHPERD, AAHPERD, NASPE, and countless others, we are moving into a new era of physical education. The new era of physical education will bring forth a new level of accountability for student learning. Assessment is the driving force behind teaching, and the tendency to grade upon irrelevant factors such as whether a student changes their clothes will soon be a mere memory of a darker time in this field. Physical education will have valid, reliable, and measurable assessments so that we can earn ourselves a spot among the other academic areas on the New York State School Report Card. We will move from our current emphasis on sports skills to a new, more practical concentration on lifetime activities. We will integrate fitness and health into our lessons so that we can address the obesity epidemic that is plaguing our country. Finally, we will no longer tolerate the idea that physical education is “gym class,” or a “special subject.” We will advocate for our field using research into the benefits of quality physical education and evidence of student learning. Make no mistake about it, everyone; the new era of physical education is coming. The undergraduate physical education students in colleges and universities throughout not just New York, but the whole country, are being trained and inspired to be change agents and bring in the new era of physical education. We would like to thank every single teacher, professor, administrator, volunteer, and members of our state and national organizations who are the change agents in the trenches right now, fighting for physical education because of their unrelenting passion and commitment to delivering quality physical education to all young people today.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Sample Grading Spreadsheet

This is my new sample grading spreadsheet. I believe this is an excellent way to do grades and I will use it in my classroom.

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Monday, June 27, 2011


So far, my technology in physical education class has opened my eyes to technology that I didn't know existed. I consider myself a computer and technology-savvy person, but the technology we are learning about in this class is brand new to me. This is really opening the floodgates for me for new, innovative ideas for both instruction and assessment. I used to consider the extent of technology in PE to be heart rate monitors and pedometers, which are both good, but it goes so far beyond that.

The ability to use services such as blogger and google sites as information channels is a valuable resource to keep in contact with students and parents as well as advocate for our program and field.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Why Leaders Don't Learn From Success

Today, I read the article, "Why Leaders Don't Learn From Success" on page 68 of the April 2011 edition of Harvard Business Review. I read this article because it coincides with the Masters program I am enrolled in, Physical Education Leadership. It sparked my interest as someone who hopes to be a leader in the field.

The article explains that leaders don't learn from success because during times of success, we don't ask WHY we are having success. We simply believe it is luck or a "prosperous" time. We only ask ourselves why we are NOT having success during tough times. I think that it's important for leaders to reflect on times of success to determine what they did right that contributed to that success. Sometimes there may be elements of luck involved, but it's important to differentiate between those elements and the ones you controlled that contributed to a time of success. This will allow a leader to continue to implement and utilize the techniques that they implored that resulted in success. Otherwise, leaders may change what they are doing without realizing they are changing something that has been successful.

The overall message is to celebrate success, but also examine it. Chances are, something you did directly contributed to that success. It's imperative that you figure out what you did right so you can continue to do it.

In a physical education sense, take the example of curriculum revision or re-write. If you have a successful revision or re-write, it's important that you examine the whole process you undertook, so you can figure out what contributed to the success. Maybe the people you selected, the processes you used to revise and/or re-write, and the time it took to rewrite were all factors to success. If you do it again a few years down the road completely differently, you may experience failure because of a lack of reflection and examination into the success.