The Benefits of PE
10 February 2021
As I sit in my rearranged living room, having finished another of our online PE lessons, I find myself extremely impressed with the efforts being put in by our students to follow lessons in their front rooms, kitchens, dining rooms and spare rooms! However, I can’t help but feel that we are missing out on some of the other benefits that PE has for our students. While the physical and mental benefits of physical activity should never be underestimated I fear we may not be developing the intellectual, social, and emotional skills in the ways we might in our ‘normal’ lessons.
I am very pleased that we have been able to continue to look after the physical health of our students through our online lessons, which are also recorded to allow everyone to access them again whenever they wish, and I hope that they are all feeling the benefits of increased mobility after spending so long at their computers. I also know that many continue to follow our advice and get outside for some physical activity as much as possible, and within the Government’s guidelines. But, if we are to continue to encourage our students to develop in some of those other areas, such as developing self-confidence, communication and teamwork, fostering creativity and problem solving as well as planning for the future and developing a lifelong love of sport or physical activity, we need to continue to think a little more creatively too.
PE is not just about games play and physical activity, we aim to develop these life skills alongside a scientific interest in sport and the practical skills required to participate successfully in a range of activities.
As such I would like our students to explore some of this for themselves. I am setting year groups 7 to 9 a group project to explore, in their PE “study” lessons, over the next half term to help foster some of these aspects and encourage a deeper understanding of sport in the world today. I am more than happy for students in Years 10 to 13 to join in with this and, if they wish to, would encourage them just to let me know. With the COVID pandemic bearing such a huge impact on sport I have decided to link these to The Summer Olympic Games, these were due to take place in Tokyo last year but have been postponed to take place later in 2021 (hopefully!). Year 7 will look at a specific Olympic sport, of their choice, Year 8 will delve into the Ancient Games while Year 9 will examine the history of the Modern Summer Games, focussing on a specific past event. I hope to be able to display these projects on the sports board, once we return, and would encourage students to present their findings in either a year group or full school assembly, should they wish to.