Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Final 470 Paper: Comparing the Methods and Curriculum's of 7 Schools

Here is my 470 Final Paper!
The paper explains the methods and curriculum's of 7 schools; Home, Montessori, Common, Public, Charter, Magnet, and Private.  I talked about the curriculum standards, teaching methods, and atmosphere of all seven schools.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Physical Education Philosophy

Nicole Tucker
Physical Education Philosophy

The purpose of Physical Education is to create physically educated people who can stay healthy for a lifetime.  To help people become physically educated they need to be taught about physical education in all three learning domains; psychomotor, cognitive, and affective.  I think that the psychomotor domain is the most important and 70% of class time should be dedicated to kids being physically active and getting a good workout.  The cognitive and affective domains should each take up 15% of the lesson because they are both required to create a well educated person. 

To physically educate students in the psychomotor domain, a teacher must get kids active, excited to move, and interested in an activity that will keep them fit for a lifetime.  Some kids do not participate in free play or sports and therefore are only physically active during PE class.  Teachers in the PE setting have a duty to get kids participating at a moderate to vigorous intensity level during every lesson.  Teachers also need to create excitement about being physically active.  If a teacher puts in extra effort and makes physical activity fun, kids will want to participate and will become better movers.  Along with making physical activity fun, teachers need to explore a variety of activities so that every child will find an activity that he or she will want to use to stay healthy for life.  Most people stop playing team sports after high school or college so teaching other forms of physical activity is very important. 

To help students see the validity of PE, physical educators should teach in the cognitive domain.  Students need to understand the benefits of being physically active, and the hazards of a sedentary lifestyle.  PE teachers should teach their students how to make a personal fitness plan, how to use resources in the community to stay active, and how to maintain a healthy lifestyle past working out.  If students are aware of the hard facts behind physical activity they will be more likely to participate in class, and more likely to stay active even after physical education classed end. 

Teaching the affective domain is important in physical education because it teaches students safety and sportsperson ship.  Physical activity can be dangerous and a physical educator should always let students know about any injury that could occur during exercise or play.  PE is also a great way for students to learn how to win and lose in a gracious manner.  It is a responsibility of a physical educator to make sure that students are taught the etiquette of how to lose so that they are well prepared to compete in the future if they choose and not know how to lose. 

If a physical educator teaches lessons that touch on all three of these domains, students will become physically educated and will have the desire and knowledge to stay fit for life.  Teaching students a variety of psychomotor skills will show them how to perform a task, teaching the cognitive aspect of that task will teach them how to continue the skill throughout their life, and teaching in the affective domain will show students how to be safe and responsible during physical activity.  

Monday, November 28, 2011

Coaching Philosophy

Coaching means training or instructing someone.  In order to do that successfully, a coach must emphasize trust, skill, and sportsperson ship.  The relationship that a I, as a coach, want to have with my athletes is based off of these three principals.  There is a balance between them that needs to be maintained, but if it is done properly the athletes will have a successful and rewarding experience. 
Trust is the biggest factor of being a coach.  It is necessary so that athletes know what to expect, and therefore can focus on playing the game.  Trust of athletes is gained through routines, contracts, and my ability to stick to my word.  If athletes know what to expect from practices and games, they will be able to put their effort into playing and not have to stress about the politics of the game.  Being able to keep my word is essential to maintaining trust because athletes need to know that I am a reliable person in their life.  As I want my athletes to trust me, I want to be able to trust them.  Through the same protocols (routines, contracts, and going through with what they promise) I will be able to trust them. 
Skill is necessary for any team that is successful.  In order for a team to become skilled, there must be a preexisting level of fitness.  My athletes will do a pre-season work out to make sure that they are in shape before they come to practices.  There will be an emphasis on fitness in every in season practice, but the main focus will be skill development.  Athletes need to spend a lot of time learning the techniques of their sport and that is what practice time will be used for. I will do extensive research in the sport I am coaching and will keep my athletes competitive by teaching them the most efficient and useful skills for that sport.  
Sportsperson ship means that athletes are acting as good citizens.  I will demand my athletes to have a good academic standing, be respectful, and not have any disciplinary problems.  While athletes may be outstanding at the high school level, chances are that they will not make a living playing sports, this is why I will require my athletes to have high grades.  Athletes need to be respectful of coaches, other athletes, parents, referees, and any other personnel involved in the sport because it will teach them how they should conduct themselves in the real world.  Being an athlete is a privilege that must be earned and my athletes will need to be good citizens in order to play for me. 
By developing trust, teaching proper skills, and demanding that my athletes be good citizens, I believe that I will have a successful team that is made up of well rounded, good citizens. 

Education Philosophy

Education is receiving or giving information, and is what shapes out society.  Education allows people to make decisions about their own beliefs and in effect guides the way they live their lives.  The most prevalent place to receive education is from a school.  There are three parts that make up a positive educational environment and they are teachers, students, and the administration.   

Teachers exist for the sole purpose of improving the lives of children.  A balance of compassion, patience, knowledge, trust, and a general desire to help children is needed to create a positive and safe learning environment for kids.  A compassionate teacher understands that all kids are different and embraces those differences.  Embracing differences involves changing lesson plans and putting in extra work to make sure that every child is set up for success and optimal learning.  A teacher who has patience will take time out of their lesson to help students learn something that they are having trouble with while also challenging the more advance students in the class.  Teachers should not get frustrated easily and should not hold grudges against students.  A good teacher should also be knowledgeable in the subject that he or she is teaching.  There is always more than one way to teach something and teachers should have multiple ways of teaching one thing so that more students can learn at their highest potential.  A genuine desire to improve a child’s life is also needed.  A teacher should always put student’s education before any other outside assignment in the district.  Coaching, advising a club, or working on outside projects cannot get in the way of teaching.  The last and most important quality of a good teacher is trustworthiness.  Students, parents, and administration need to be sure that a teacher is creating a safe environment in which children can learn to their fullest potential. 

Students need to be willing to learn, and open to forming their own ideas about what they are being taught.  Receiving information from a teacher should not be enough, students need to process the information and add their own life experiences into the mix to come up with their own ideas.  It is easy to accept what is taught at face value, but students need to be encouraged to challenge what they are being told if they don’t agree, and add more personal insight to the information if they do agree. 

The environment that education takes place in can have a large impact on the quality of that education.  Students and teachers should feel as though the district or administration is supporting the enhancement of education.  A district can show support through funding, openness to new ideas and programs, and constant contact.  A school district should know what is going on in the classroom or gymnasium at all times, and should be providing sufficient equipment and supplies to make sure that positive, beneficial learning is taking place. 

If teachers, students, and administration are all compliant to these ideas, I feel as though maximum learning will occur, and students will be well prepared individual thinkers in society. 

Bullying in Schools

Here is a great resource to find out ways to handle bullying, stats on bullying, and anything else a future educator should know about bullying!

It's about time!

Being a Physical Educator, I realize the importance of Physical Activity for academic improvement, but others are just catching on.  Kids should not be inactive for more than 2 hours at a time, so as a PE teacher try implementing programs in your school such as before school warm-ups, recess organized games, and other short segments of physical activity throughout the day.  This article tells of how one physical educator increased the amount of Physical Activity his students participated in each day. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

For all of those doubters out there

As PE majors, we are constantly being questioned about the integrity of our profession.  I came across a website that has a list of websites that are all about making PE as credible as possible.  Some of the articles include things such as how physical activity improves academics, how to fight obesity in schools, and why dodge ball should not be played in schools.  PECentral has this list of websites, or can be found by clicking here.  I hope this helps!

Reasons for what we learn

PE at SUNY Cortland put a large emphasis on knowing things such as educaating the whole child, adaptive services, and appropriate measurements.  All of these things make sense, but on the AAPHERD website all of these documents are laid out along with the reasons of why they are important.  The most interesting part of the website that I found is the section on looking at PE from a developmental perspective.  I liked this part of the website because it offers a set look at why we teach in a developmental pattern and all of the aspects of it.    

Fun PE Site!

I was searching the internet for some cool PE sites, and came across a woman, Susan's, private site.  This website has information on activities, resources, and adaptive aspects of PE.  My favorite part about Susan's site was the Human Ladder activity.  This activity is basically like the continuous railroad activity, but with more of a project adventure twist.  This activity would be good for kids who don't care to be physically active because they would be more focused on keeping their teammates up in the air rather than the amount of physical activity they are experiencing. 

More Lesson Plans

As my Cortland Career is ending, I am searching for resources where I can get lesson plans from.  I came across a site this website has a lot of specific lesson ideas that can be used in part, or in total for lessons.  The lessons are broken down with objectives, anticipatory sets, and everything else necessary for a successful lesson.  The website also offers lessons from other subjects, so if I am subbing for a teacher that is not PE I have a resource for last minute activities. 

Be fit for life with NASPE

Right now, there is a huge emphasis on keeping kids fit for life.  A great way to teach kids this is by using the 12-15 class lesson called Fit For Life. The  FIT for life lesson plan  can be found here and comes equipped with objectives, list of materials, and breakdowns for each lesson in the unit.  at the end of the document, there is an area that says what kinds of assessments can be used, and how the lesson correlates to each of the 6 NASPE standards.  This unit is great for teaching kids personal responsibility while creating a fitness plan. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

SOARing to new territory

With the job market in today's PE word, it is important for phys ed undergrads to think of other things they can do with their degrees.  While researching this topic, I came across a program called SOAR.  SOAR stands for Success Oriented Achievement Realized and helps teens and young adults who have learning disabilities and or AD/HD.  In the program, kids are taken out into the woods to camp and try high adventure activities.  With a PE degree, many of our orienteering and project adventure units would help us to know how to handle the kids, which activities are useful, and be able to keep the kids physically active.  

Are kids good movers?

In schools today, kids are moving, but not as well as they should be.  There are many things (TV, video games, etc) that keep kids from participating in physical activity, and these things cause them to be inefficient movers.  If kids are physically active, they are usually put in one sport and spend their time only developing skills for that activity.  To create better, more efficient movers we need to teach kids how to move in a variety of different ways.  By teaching kids a large variety of skills, there is a better chance that they will find an activity that they can use for lifelong physical activity.  Staring kids out moving at a young age is very important so be sure that if you are an elementary PE teacher, you encourage a variety of activities that can appeal to many different children, even those who are not motivated or physically fit.  New units such as adventure activity and exergaming can help to reach the kids who are mot motivated or need a lot of teaching by invitation. 

Encouraging movement in the classroom.

A good PE program meets for fifty minutes a period at least three times a week.  While this is a good amount of physically active time, , physical education teachers should encourage classroom teachers to get the students up and active for as much of the period as they can.  Teachers cam play an around the world trivia game which gets the kids throwing and catching, throwing balls at questions on the wall, and by setting up learning stations around the room so that kids are at least up out of their chairs.  Working with every person in a school is important, but it is most important to work with classroom teachers.  Them promoting PE as a fun period can be very beneficial.  You can also help out classroom teachers by incorporating academic aspects into your lessons.  Teachers can fill out a weekly sheet on what the students are learning in class, and you can incorporate those topics into your lesson or unit.  Reinforcing concepts between subjects helps students retain the information better.  Classroom teachers should be eager to comply. 

Obesity and how Physical Education can help it

17% of youth in America are considered obese.  Factors that contribute to this are nutrition, lack of physical activity, and a general lack of caring about ones physical state.  As a physical educator,one of my main priorities is to help kids enjoy physical activity and help them learn life long skills that will enable them to keep fit.  Along with the core curriculum (basketball, softball, soccer, and football) I plan to incorporate activities such as weight lifting, exergaming, running, orienteering, tennis, LAX, and Frisbee.  These activities will reach a wide variety of students and help all kids find an enjoyment in physical activity. I believe that all children can be physically active through an activity they enjoy, and I want to help them find that activity.  By helping kids find an activity they enjoy obesity rates will decrease.    

Hoop in Physical Education

Hula Hooping is a great physical activity that can keep kids entertained for a long period of time.  I recently learned how to hula hoop, and am eager to create a hoop dance unit for my curriculum.  Hoop dance can improve balance, coordination, rhythm, muscular endurance, and cardiovascular endurance.  There are so many different things that can be done with a hula hoop, lessons can be customed to fit the needs of students.  In example, if one student wants to increase upper body muscular endurance, have him or her work on hooping around the arms and shoulders.  If a student wants to work on lower body muscular endurance have him or her hoop around the knees or lay on their back with a leg in the air and hoop around his or her leg.     


Past PE Teachers

In elementary school I had a female physical education teacher who was a fairly good teacher.  She has a lot of exercises to teach basic motor skills, but she made them seem like exercises~ not games.  PE for me as a child involved a lot of moving, but not a lot of fun.  I think that it is important to infuse creativity and fun into PE lessons so that kids get a good impression of physical activity and want to keep doing it.  In middle and high school we played games, but did very little skill and tactical development.  We jumped right into game play with little preparation.  Middle and high school levels of PE should be focused on specific skill development and tactical aspects of the game.  If my teachers would have taught us specific skills, and some tactical drills game play would have been much more fun, and much more beneficial. 

My Influences In Physical Education

My high school didn’t have a quality physical education program, we had gym class.  Grades 9-12 was a roll out the balls and play form of physical education with no attention being given to tactics, technique, or skill.  I did not enjoy PE when I was in high school because I didn’t feel prepared to play in games so early.  I developed a dislike for Ultimate Frisbee in high school because our PE teachers didn’t spend time on the skills, they assumed that everyone was good at throwing Frisbees.  Once I got to college and learned the proper way to throw and catch a Frisbee, I fell in love with Ultimate.  I want my students to experience success in the activities that I teach so that they like the activities and therefore like to be physically active.  Setting up students for success at a young age sets them up to be physically active for life.  My teachers did not set up their classes for success and a lot of kids lost an interest in physical activity.  With a variety of activities, and proper teaching techniques my PE experience could have been a lot better.  I hope that I can make a positive impact on the program I join so that no more kids are discouraged from physical education. 

Why did I choose Physical Education?

The most common question that college students are asked is “What is your major?”.  I love answering that I am a physical education major.  I am a P.E. major because I want to help all kids realize that they can be physically educated, and therefore physically fit.  So many kids are discouraged from PE because they aren’t good at basketball or soccer, but with new PE kids can learn other activities that they can succeed at and therefore enjoy.  Dance, self defense, orienteering, exergaming, and many other non-traditional activities can keep kids active for the rest of their lives.  I want to impact the non-athletic kids and help them find an activity that they love and can use to stay healthy for the rest of their lives. 


   With Halloween and Thanksgiving right around the corner, we need to start watching what our children are eating.  As Physical Education teachers it is important to encourage healthy eating and make sure that we don’t give out candy to them.  Some ideas for healthy eating can be found on  Healthy eating is an important key to getting the best results out of the body.  Children need to learn the proper foods to eat starting at the elementary level so that as they get older they are able to make good choices and maintain a healthy lifestyle.  There are ten foods that say are the most important foods for kids.  These ten Superfoods are:
*Whole grain bread~ provide fuel for kids without increasing blood sugar levels.
*Blueberries~ Give kids antioxidants which neutralize harmful byproducts which can lead to many diseases, they also provide sweetness for kids without refined sugar.
*Yogurt~ An excellent source of calcium and protein.  Also helps the immune system.
*Sweet Potatoes~Have disease fighting elements, and are loaded with carotene, vitamin E, vitamin B6, potassium, and iron.
*Natural Nut Butters~ Not loaded with sugars and fatty acids.
*Beans~ Have a lot of fiber and iron.  Include chickpeas, black beans, kidney beans, and lentils.
*Broccoli~ Filled with vitamin C! Introduce it at an early age so that kids are used to eating it, try not to add dressing or cheese.
*Omega-3 eggs~ Can improve skin, allergies, moods, and most importantly mood in children.  Children with ADD show signs of omega 3 deficiency.
*Avacodos~ Offer the good kind of fat for children (60% of a child’s brain is made up of fat)
*Organic Chicken~ Harmful additives are not found in organic chicken, gives kids good protein.