Through the years there has been increase in conversations and transitions towards inclusion and the engagement of all students into activities and classes. You would think that the easiest core subject area to include all students and have everyone participate would be Physical Education. (commonly called gym)
This is however far from reality. Every teacher knows that student participation is dependent on many factors including the student and on the activity. Teachers know that motivating students to participate can sometimes be very tedious especially when you factor in being changed for the activity. Finally, when you ask them why they are not participating often you will hear that either they don’t like the activity, that they are bored or that they do not want to play with Jimmy for some reason.
I have found this to a significant reality this year with my grade two/three class that I teach. Trying to make physical education fun and engaging was becoming a bit of a chore, however. Recently, I took a risk and the out come and payoff was spectacular. One of my grade two students asked if we, meaning the class could play “Just Dance”. I informed the student that we did not have an X-Box or a Wii in the school. The student told me that I was just to look up a song under “Just Dance” on YouTube.
I followed the directions I was given, thinking I am going to have to think of another activity quickly to transition too, as the boys and a couple of girls in the class would not participate. Thank fully I was wrong, here is what I saw.
As I continue to learn about teaching physed to little ones I must ask, what do you do, how do you keep students participating and active.