I reflect back to the start of the 2020 school year with my main three goals.
Well, like most of us in Term 1 I started really well like an eager participant in school cross country race but just as I saw the front and was ready to attack the wheels fell out underneath me and I faced a reality of teaching behind a screen, not once but twice this year in Victoria, like thousands of my fellow colleagues around our country. It was a reflecting that was pivotal in our history and as a teacher I had to make a one of two decision extremely fast.
I chose option 2. Not sure how I was going to do it but I looked back at my goals which concreted my WHY for the year. Despite the pandemic that was occurring around us it was my goal as an educator to feed students daily Physical Snacks, as I like to call them, that created an addiction to movement and skill practise. With many hours drafting in my journal I was ready to create Physical Snack number 1 for remote learning. This was called: Broom Ball, a game inspired by shuffle board on cruise ships. 50 Physical Snacks later and nearly 100000 views the addiction to movement was obvious throughout my school as well as the wider Physical Education world. www.youtube.com/c/mrhairphysed
Goal setting is extremely important within our industries. Thinking about 2020, I met my goals but in a different way and was forced to RETHINK what education meant to everyone. Was I just entertaining or were my lessons setting students up for a greater advancement in academic rigour and personal care for future years? For my entire career teaching has been formed around building blocks each packed tightly in with the one before it. Despite not knowing if I will ever finish my building, these building blocks gave me purpose to look back on and see where I have been. As we move into the 2021 school year, I would love you, the reader, to consider these questions:
It must be remembered that your Physical Education program is not about the quantity of equipment you have in your storeroom but rather the variety of equipment you have. As quality program tests the ability of skills in a number of settings to ensure that learning sticks. Our direction towards a physically literate student means that we as educators need to expose our students to as many variables, opportunities and movement experiences so they develop a love for being active in their own neighbourhoods and carry this physical love with them for life.
Above all, love what you do and be confident in who you are as a teacher. There is so much to be proud of from the work you have achieved and taking the lessons you have learnt from 2020 and embedding them into your 2021 year and behind is critical. We are all searching for the ultimate lesson and I personally hope that I never find it as I love the search and bettering myself as an educator each day.
At Leopold Primary School, Geelong, Victoria where I have been teaching Physical Education for 20 years, our community is embedded in our Physical story. I invite you to visit whenever you feel and become a part of our program. You can connect with me on Twitter @mrhairphysed or via www.mrhairphysed.com.
Finally remember that your journey in 2021 starts tomorrow. Plan for the future and be a risk taker to tackle something new. Connect and chat with as many educators as you can and find a style that you respect and admire. Above all remember to just have fun!!!
Physical Education Teacher and Coach
Leopold Primary School, Geelong Victoria.