Table of Contents
The Role of Physical Education Within the National Physical Activity Plan
The Education Sector of the recently updated National Physical Activity Plan (NPAP; 2023) was developed to assist schools, early care and education centers, and colleges and universities to establish policies and provide programmatic opportunities to support all students in adopting physically active lifestyles. The 2023 Education Sector strategies target K-12 education, preschool and early childhood education, as well as college and university contexts to develop and advocate for strong policies that promote physical education and physical activity for all students. Successful implementation of the Education Sector strategies has the potential to support high-quality program delivery. Specific to school physical education programs, the strategies’ adoption has the capacity for a broad, lifelong impact. This article presents an overview of the Education Sector strategies and their related tactics, along with objectives specific for K-12 school physical education programming.
Venturing Online: A Delivery Model for University Homeschool Physical Education Programs
University-based homeschool physical education programs are one way to ensure homeschooled children have access to high-quality, standards-based opportunities to develop their physical literacy. These programs have traditionally been held on site at hosting institutions and were greatly impacted by the limitations imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic. This article describes how one university’s program faculty pivoted their in-person homeschool program to one delivered online. Replication of the processes and/or implementation of other online field experience alternatives shared in this article may increase opportunities for homeschooled children to receive appropriate physical education instruction, while also improving the flexibility and variations of field experiences within teacher preparation programs.
Take Health Lessons to the Gym – Part II
This is part II of a two-part series on integrating a physical activity component in delivering health lessons to elementary and middle school students. The purpose of this series is to illustrate how health content can be implemented with hands-on activities, physical experiments, visual illustrations that are associated with a specific lesson focus, or physical tasks that require students to repeatedly practice memory recall. Two physical activities in the following five health education topics are provided in this article: (1) alcohol, tobacco and other drugs; (2) communicable and chronic diseases; (3) consumer and community health; (4) environmental health; and (5) injury prevention and safety. Corresponding National Health Education Standards and 21st-century skills for each activity are also provided. Similar to part I of the series, a few of the designs can be implemented with a different lesson focus or health topic. Examples are discussed at the end of the article.
Using Humor in the Health/Physical Education Classroom to Create an Enjoyable Learning Environment
The purpose of this article is to show that health and physical education (HPE) teachers who implement humor in the classroom intentionally create a more relaxed classroom environment, build stronger relationships with students, and engage students in the learning process. Humor used as an instructional strategy eases teacher stress and engages students, leading to a comfortable and welcoming classroom climate. Students feel connected, relaxed and calm when humor is implemented in the classroom. Three theories of humor are briefly described, with Incongruity Theory identified as the primary way to conceptualize using humor in the classroom as a teaching practice. Different kinds of humor are introduced that can be implemented in the classroom. This article also identifies the types of humor considered inappropriate for the classroom. Strategies for implementing humor as a pedagogical practice are discussed to help HPE teachers reach the laugh-into-engagement effect.
Social Media-based Professional Learning Communities for Physical Educators: Opportunities and Challenges
This article aims to explain how social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter can be useful setting for effective professional learning communities (PLCs) for physical educators. It also pinpoints the opportunities and challenges of using social media for PLCs and provides recommendations for physical educators and physical education teacher educators for promoting social media-based PLC (SMB-PLCs) engagement in physical education. SMB-PLCs minimize the geographic and temporal barriers to PLC participation, provide diverse perspectives and experiences, and make PLC participation more accessible and flexible. However, physical educators need to be aware of the issues of content validity and reliability, echo chamber effects, and the time and emotionally consuming nature of social media when participating in SMB-PLCs. To better promote in-service physical educators’ SMB-PLC engagement, professional development on technology literacy needs to be offered to connect inexperienced physical educators to more experienced colleagues. Moreover, physical education teacher education should incorporate social media into its curriculum to better connect preservice teachers to the larger communities of practice and use it as a learning tool.
Post-Secondary Transition Programming: An Avenue for Physical Activity Promotion for Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) experience lower levels of physical activity in comparison to the general population. While many factors contribute to this disparity, expanding appropriate and accessible programming in settings frequented by adults with IDD deserves attention. One such setting is post-secondary transition programs (PSTPs), which aim to increase the independence and well-being of people with IDD after high school. Offering physical activity in PSTPs would not only serve the mission of these programs but would contribute to health promotion efforts to reach this marginalized group.
Wait Wait!... Don’t Tell Me About Physical Education Programs in the U.S.
From the perspective of a Black educator, this essay suggests the need for an advocacy campaign to restructure the physical education programs that are already in place in order to revamp instruction and student learning and increase the value of education for all—with a special focus on addressing the needs of Black students and Indigenous People of Color. After the pandemic, re-evaluating physical education is crucial for creating inclusive, equitable and long-lasting programs.
Fit 4 Tots: A Journey for University Students to Understand Toddlers’ Movement
This ‘teaching tip’ shares the success of a service-learning opportunity created to work with university students in a meaningful way in the community. It describes a program called Fit 4 Tots that resulted in more toddlers, university students and community members benefiting from learning and movement experiences.
ChatGPE: Does Artificial Intelligence Have a Place in the Physical Education Setting?
AI tools can revolutionize physical education (PE) by assisting teachers in various ways, such as curriculum development, providing feedback, enhancing content knowledge and data analysis, and promoting student engagement. This article explores various ways in which PE teachers can utilize AI tools like ChatGPT to improve their instruction and enhance the quality of their programs.
THE LAW AND YOU
Teaching physical education involves more than overseeing what happens on the field, court or in the swimming pool. Physical educators also need to control the locker room, where students hazing other students may be common practice at certain schools. This case is a good example of what happens when teachers and coaches fail to supervise athletes and students in the locker room.