Thursday, May 9, 2013
During one of the final weeks of the school year I started a recreation unit for the students at the school I was student teaching at. Couldn't ask for better timing either! The weather stayed nice for the entire week, so of course I kept reminding students to go home and play these games with parent/guardians and get outside! In fact we had an activity day the friday after state testing and a few of the activities we played in class were part of that day. Kid's actually questioned me why we were doing this unit and I hope they understood my response.
I told them, these are activities that you can participate in for an entire lifetime! Activities included; washers, bean bag toss, shuffle board, ping pong, mini putt and bowling. If you drive down Lincoln ave in Cortland on a warm spring afternoon, you will see yards packed with college students, enjoying the sunshine and playing these games.
Although this experience is racing toward the end, I feel the things I have learned will stay with me for a lifetime. I have become a better teacher because of my host teachers and the programs they have instilled in their districts. I can only hope that the students whose lives I have been a part of remember me in a positive way and continue their lives as physically educated individuals.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Last week I had the opportunity to show students that people with disabilities can do a lot of the same activities we do in PE. We were in our last days of team handball, so I decided to throw a curve ball at the students by simulating different kinds of disabilities. After the class was over we had a discussion about how the students felt when playing. Some of them felt scared and didn't feel comfortable, especially with the visual disability. The disabilities we included were students with mobility, visual and cognitive impairments. The students who had a mobile disability were on scooters with students assisting them by pushing on their backs. The cognitive disability was simulated by having specific students only pass backwards upon receiving the ball. For the visual impairment we had students wear blindfolds and use a guide (above). A lot of the times, people who had a disability never got the ball! This is quite normal in a PE class and that is what I was trying to change! After our discussion, students seem to be more understanding of students with disabilities and how it can affect everyone in the class. I explained that just because the students have a disability does not mean they can't play the game. I also wanted the students to understand that when we play the game, everyone likes to be included. Students with disabilities should have every opportunity everyone else has, and in my class, they will!