Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Teaching some iDance

For our final exam in my 255 class I was assigned to create a lesson incorporating the iDance system. The iDance is a really great system that is exactly like Dance Dance revolution but with much more. With the iDance you can play with up to 32 people. This is great for physical education teachers with big classes. With this system everyone can play at the same time. Another great this about this system is that each student can choose their own difficulty. This is helpful when students are at different levels of difficulty.

In my lesson I incorporated teamwork and communication. I used this lesson as one day in my block plan. My block plan starts off with students just learning the basics and getting comfortable with the iDance system. This includes learning different strategies and techniques for improving. This also includes students learning where to look for things such as arrow placement. To test the students after learning these things, I had them take an assessment quiz. This quiz has the students place the arrows on the projector screen in the correct order from left to right. Throughout my block plan I have students get involved in more and more difficult tasks. In lesson 7 I have them work with a partner in activities that are much more difficult than the others. My lesson plan shows what activities I choose to do. One activity called "Listen up" involves one student on the dance pad dancing but, blindfolded. They need to listen to their partner, who will be giving the commands and where to step, in order to succeed. Another activity I have students to is called "Watch and Learn". This is the same concept as the other one but this time, the partner will have their back to the screen and will have to watch their partner perform the dance moves in order to succeed. Both of these activities involve a lot of teamwork and great communication. It is a lot of fun and the students enjoy is a lot. At the end of this lesson I have students choose the song they would like to dance to and have them just practice till the end of class. This practice is for the final day of the unit when they will be able to pick a song and try and get the highest score they can get on the highest level. I use a self check checklist for the students to see how they do in this test.

The whole unit of iDance is a lot of fun and a great way to keep moving and active. I came up with a whole lot of different activities that the students will go through and get better at as the class goes on. Each of these activities will help students with their endurance, strength, agility, flexibility, and balance. This unit is perfect for helping students stay healthy and fit.

Doing a little extra

This semester was the first semester that I took the time to do something extra for my professional development. I signed up to help Dr. Yang and be a lab assistant for his PED 201: Motor Development class. This was an outstanding opportunity for me and really helped me develop as a teacher. I had taken this class the semester before so I did know most of what was being taught. However, being able to relearn everything really helped me understand and take it in much better. It also really helped me learn because I had to teach it myself to other students. When you teach someone else something it really helps you understand it better yourself.

In this lab assisting experience I achieved my minimum of 10 hours of experience. Each semester at SUNY Cortland we are required to have a minimum of 10 hours teaching outside the classroom. This is required to help up improve our teaching styles and abilities. Being a lab assistant did just that. In this class the students have to go over to St. Mary's to teach little kids at an elementary school. It was great to be back there after a semester. Many of the students actually knew who I was and remembered me from the previous semester.

Although I did not have to come up with any lessons and activities to do with the kids, I was still responsible for helping my group of students with their activities. I was also responsible for a closing game at the end of the lesson for the kids. One day I had to dance and sing to a song of my choice while everyone else danced in a circle around me. And another time I had to play some games using a giant parachute (which was soooo much fun). I was able to take much more time for observing children and seeing how they act toward different styles of teaching. I was also able to really have a good amount of 1 on 1 time with certain kids that misbehave a lot.

Overall this experience has really moved me along on my Physical Education journey. I am becoming a much more comfortable teacher and I am much more confident in front of students no matter what the age. I plan on helping as a lab assistant once again for Dr. Yang next semester in his 255 class. And I can not wait to continue my experience in becoming the best teaching I can be. I hope to help all the students that are in my classes and really move them along toward becoming great teachers as well. It is up to our generation to really change the systems we have and improve what we have. The students of the future need us and I am excited to be apart of that. This experience was not only for a requirement but for my own development in what I plan to do the rest of my life, and what I want to do the rest of my life.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Technology in Physical Education

I was browsing around some site and found this great resource for using technology in physical education classrooms. The site is called Bonnie's Fitware Inc. This site has various examples of lesson plans and ideas for incorporating different kinds technology into your class. There is also many items that are available to buy including pedometers and books on how to incorporate technology. This is a great resource that I just would like to share to all the other physical education majors out there.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Relay For Life

What can be said about Relay for Life. One can say that is is a great event for socializing and seeing friends. Others might say that it is a fun time staying up all night and participating in the various activities that are going on. Some might not even know what to say about the event. But what Relay for Life really is, is a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against the disease. It is the support for all the people that have to deal with cancer some way in their lives. It is a time to help give the strength to these people to fight cancer and not only manage with it, but BEAT it.

The way relay for life works is that is will be set up somewhere where there is a track or pathway that loops around to make a lap. Typically these events will take place at a track or park area. The event lasts for 12 or 24 hours straight with no breaks. The event will be made up of many people in teams or as individuals. My self and Jack Murphy were both in charge of coordinating our team for this event. We were in charge of the SUNY Cortland Physical Education Majors and I must say, it went very well.

The first thing we thought of doing as our booth was incorporating something physical that does not take up a lot of space. Maybe a video game. But it has to incorporate movement and activity. I know...DDR. Dance Dance Revolution is a great way for getting students to move. They think they are just playing a fun video game, but really there is much more going on. In order to be successful in this game you have no choice but to get your dancing shoes on and move. Playing on a high level in this game.... ridiculous. Anyway, once we decided that DDR was the best way to go with our booth we both had to think about where do get the equipment. Well right away we knew exactly where to go....the technology man of the century, Dr. Steven S. Yang. He supplied us with a projector, projector screen, playstation 2, 3 DDR dance pads, and the necessary extension cords. We had the stufff, set it up, and it was a huge success.

Overall, I think we had one of the best booths there. The only other booth that were able to compete was the gymnastics team hand stand contest and cartwheeling area. But hey, not everyone is meant to flip, toss, and turn in the air while drinking tea and reading a book and sending an G-mail all at the same time.

The night really meant a lot to a lot of people, especially Jack. As a good friend of Jack I know that he is dealing with a family member having cancer, and although I can't completely understand how he feels, I know it is tough. There were many people there that either knew someone who had cancer, has cancer, or passed due to cancer, or even had cancer themselves. It was really inspiring to hear the stories of these people and what they had to go through, or are going through. To see the strength these people have really makes me a stronger person knowing how possible anything is. And with that said I will end this post on this statement....anything is possible, as long as you believe

This is it!! Lets Dance!!

Yes, this is it....today we learned how to be like Mike....Michael Jackson that is. On Wednesday, November 11th we were assigned to teach in our 5th and final lesson of the class (Lab D). I chose to teach dance and selected the very famous dance "Thriller" by Michael Jackson. Going into this lesson I was determined to pick a dance that everybody knows and would love to learn. I feel that making my lessons more personal and close to the students make it easier for the students to connect and want to participate.
As you can see in my lesson plan I tried to organize my lesson into stations. I find stations one of the best ways to organize a lesson. Stations allow the students to work at their own pace and requires less instruction time and more activity time. The only thing that I have to address is how to go to each station and the various safety concerns and rules that I may have (also listed in my lesson plan). Along with the directions at each station, I also handed out a checklist that students could follow which had identical directions as the stations. This style of teaching worked out nicely and really kept my lesson running smoothly. After my lesson, one of the lab assistants gave me the idea of possibly using the jigsaw method with the stations. This method involves having the students get into groups of 4 or 5, splitting them up (one student at each station), having that student learn their portion of the dance at that station, and then all coming back together to put the dance together into one. This involves them teaching themselves how to do the dance, improving teamwork, and allowing them to work at their own pace. I will definitely consider doing this method the next time I teach.

Since I was using the station method, it gave me much more time to focus on other important parts of my teaching. With out constant direction, and having the students learn the dance moves themselves, I was able to really focus on giving the best feedback I could give. I was able to demonstrate for each person at each station and tell them what they were doing right, and what they were doing wrong. The only thing that I had to be sure to do is keep a close eye on the whole class even though I was concentrated on only a couple of students. You always need to be aware of the whole class because you never know when students might start misbehaving. Any type of situation can occur at any moment and as the teacher in charge it is your job to always be ready. I was lucky however, and did not have any incidents in my lesson. If there was any type of event, I do believe I was ready to handle it.
One area of improvement that I could work on in the future and seemed to be a problem of mine this whole semester is my time management. Although I have avoided any waiting time in my lessons, I continue to have to much instruction time in my lessons. I get caught talking too much and not giving the students enough activity time. My time coding form you can see that my activity time and instruction time is almost exactly half and half. In my future lessons I need to make sure I keep my instruction time short and to the point so that I can have as much activity time as possible.
Over all I think this lesson was my best and was the most fluent. Using my powerpoint video to instruct the student in what they were going to do really helped a lot too. Although I had a lot of instruction time, I think my instruction was really useful. I made a powerpoint for my introduction and placed the "Thriller" music video on it so my students could see exactly how Michael Jackson does the moves. I think this really helps a lot of students because when it comes to physical education, many students are better visual learners rather that verbal instruction.
With the improvements I have made, there are still many more to be done. But my journey toward becoming a great physical education teacher has taken a huge step forward during my teaching experiences in this class. I can only hope I continue to improve each and every day.

- Lesson Plan
- Assessment Checklist
- Activity Progression Sheet
- Time Coding Analysis Sheet

Monday, November 16, 2009

New Team to the NFL!

Roger Goodell has officially had it with the Detroit Lions and want to create a new team to replace them. It is my job along with the rest of my group to run some tryouts for students to try and make the new team! That was the story we used today in our Skill Acquisition Concepts of Team Sports class. We were assigned to give a flag football lesson that lasted 15 min to a class of about 15 students. My good friend and fellow classmate Jack Murphy had a very creative idea of making this lesson into "tryouts" for a professional team. I really like the idea of using stories behind your lessons because it really grabs the students attention. The best way to make the students want to be involved in the lesson is to relate the lesson to them. Knowing that the majority of the class likes the NFL, we used that as the basis of our lesson so we could get students interested. AND IT WORKED!! No surprise there!!

My group and I taught the class the basic cues for a pass, and an upper and lower catch. We kept the cues simple and easy to remember to avoid any confusion between students. We started our lesson off with a fun and exciting game of "Ultimate Football". This is generally the same game as "Ultimate Frisbee" but played with a football. Although it does not guarantee the students will be using the proper form for throwing, it really helps them practice catching from different levels. This game also just gets the students moving and warmed up for the following activity.

Our group then started the class off with a simple activity to practice the basic cues and steps for a pass, and a lower and upper pass. Students got with a partner and stood about 25 feet apart and simply had a catch with each other, tossing the ball back and forth. Since this activity is kind of boring and not much activity is involved, we only let it go on for a few minutes just to get the idea of the movements presented. The next activity we introduced is a form of intra-task variation of the first activity. We played a little "monkey in the middle". This is really the same game except there is one defender in between the partners trying to take the ball away. This provides more of a challenge for the students who are finding the skill to be to easy. Another variation that we applied is having the students running routes. This activity would be considered a game like situation drill, and is very useful when your final goal is to get the kids to play in a full game.

Last but not least, our final drill was a modified game. We split the class into 4 teams and assigned different teams to play each other in a small 5v5 football game. Students wore flags so there was no contact. We made sure to emphasize this in our directions so that no one got hurt. Overall, our lesson went great and the class had a lot of fun doing it. We also have found a couple of potential players for Roger's team. I'll have to call up Roger and let him know. Maybe the NFL will be introducing the Cortland Red Dragons team in the near future. Disney World here I come!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Teaching on Ice - Broomball - Lab C(international)

255 is moving along and it seems like I was just teaching a simple set in volleyball with no previous preparation. Now I'm in a completely new environment, teaching on ice, explaining a game I have never even played before. On Wednesday, October 28th, 2009, I was assigned Lab C, which was a challenge but a great experience. Myself, along with fellow classmate, Jack Murphy, introduced our class to the game of Broomball. This game was developed in Canada, however, since there is no official history of the sport, we decided to use our creativity to make our own little story. Our little penguin that we created has the name of Dr. Xavier Waddles, and is the famous penguin that invented the game of Broomball. After finding a lot of trash all over Antarctica, Dr. Xavier decided to hit it all around and clean up the mess with a stick he had found. The act of hitting the garbage away gave him the idea of Broomball.

Setting up for this lab was a lot of work and was very stressful. We had to make sure we had the right equipment and the right amount of it too. We also had to make sure that were able to use the ice rink for our lesson and that the ice would be ready for us. This preparation is something that we are going to have to get used to dealing with since when we become teachers we will be doing the same things. I did learn a lot throughout this experience. I now know that when ever you have an assignment or lesson to prepare for, the best thing to do is take care of everything you can as soon as you can. But, after all the fuss was over and I was done stressing over preparation everything, I really gave a good lesson and was satisfied with what I did. This lab involved a lot of work and really tested how well I have come along in my teaching experience. I can see many places where I have improved, and many places where I still need work. One huge improvement that I have almost perfected is being enthusiastic and excited about my lesson. I am moving around, talking loud, and showing my students that I want to be here, and I want to teach this game. This is really important, because once again, if your not having fun, the students won't be having fun. I was able to increase the percent of activity time a little bit from my last lesson, however, I could still slim down on the instruction and add more activity. In my time code analysis form you can see that activity time and instruction time are almost equal. In an ideal lesson the activity time would be above 50% of the lessons total time. This is not a huge deal, and would only take a little bit more planning and practicing for my lesson before. The big reason that I was able to improve my time management was because of the extra practice that I put in to preparing my lesson. I found that if you play out your lesson to your self and actually say what you plan to say, you could manage how long certain parts of the lesson should be. I repeated what I planned to say many times in front of the mirror in my room and not only did it help me with time management, but also with my comfortability in front of the class which I believe is my strongest point.

In my lesson I noticed that I was much more bubbly and active. I moved around and used a lot of hand signals when I was speaking. This is good because it really grabs the students attention. It shows how interested in the lesson I am, and how much fun I am having. If you give off fun, you will get fun back. That is what I believe and it has worked for me great so far.

Another good point that I had in this lesson is the amount of feedback I gave to the students. It is important to give some form of feedback to at least 50% of the class. As it shows in my feedback analysis form I gave the right amount of feedback. I made sure to give both general feedback and skill related feedback. I told the students when they were doing things right and I told them when they were doing the skill wrong. This helps everyone learn because if you only told the students when they did something wrong, they would never know when they were doing it right.

Overall my lesson was a big step up from my previous teaching experiences. There were many things that I improved upon and did right. However, along with everything I did right, there is still, and always be, room for improvement.

In case anyone missed my files here they are:

- Time coding analysis form
- Feedback analysis form
- Lesson plan
- Activity Progression

Monday, October 12, 2009

The impossible wave

This is a video of my hero, Laird Hamilton. Laird is said to be the best big wave surfer that has ever lived. What makes me so drawn to him is the way he looks at life. Laird Hamilton is the most dedicated and devoted person I have ever seen. Whatever Laird wants to do, he puts all of the effort he possibly could into it until he reaches his goal. Having this much dedication will get you anywhere you want and it is exactly how I would like to be when applied to my teaching.If I could learn to put that much effort into everything I do, and devote myself to everything that I am really striving for, I could become a positive role model for my students, hopefully pushing them to do the same. I am a strong believer that having goals is extremely important. No matter how big or small those goals are, it is necessary to have them. Having goals gives you something to work for, something to achieve, and something to reward you when you get there. The satisfaction that comes with achieving a goal is unbeatable and I believe all people should experience it at some point in their life. Physical education especially is a field that most definitely requires goals. Whether the goal is as small as improving your mile time by 15 seconds, or as big as being able to run a marathon, the goal is still important. As my quote says on the top of my blog, "goals are the fuel to the furnace of achievement"

Saturday, October 10, 2009

2009 SUNY Cortland Mini Conference

The 2009 Mini Conference has arrived and it went great! This years keynote speaker was Dr. Judy Rink, a SUNY Cortland alumni and well known researcher in the physical education field. She has done great work in physical education and has come up with some fantastic philosophies and ideas on how physical education should be taught and what direction it should be going. A great point that Judy made was about accountability and how we, as the future generation of physical education, are responsible for taking it to the next step, and helping people realize the true importance of it. Judy Rink is truly an inspiration and I hope to someday be as much of an influence as she has become on all physical education teachers. Another presentation that was held was by our very own physical education majors here at SUNY Cortland. Together they presented different types of warm up activities that can be used in a physical education class. Of coarse I volunteered to participate and help them out with these activities and I must say, they did their job. By the end of the presentation I was hot and sweaty and out of breathe. Overall, I really learned a lot from this conference, experiencing different ideas and philosophies about physical education. I will be taking a lot of this information along with me on my physical education journey to become the best physical education teacher I possibly could.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Lab B - Listen in

Continuing my teaching development, and after learning more tricks of the trade I was up again to teach the class a new skill. In this lesson I was to teach the class the back hand pass with a Frisbee. I definitely felt more confident with this assignment and knew right away that my lesson would be much more fluent and smooth. In this lab we were attached to an mp3 recorder and a microphone that allows us to play back our lesson and hear exactly what we said and how we said it.

While listening to my audio recording I was really able to assess my speech and style of teaching. I was able to see what words I kept repeating, which sentences did not make sense, and various instructions I could have avoided to get the students into more activity quicker. While teaching, it is hard to really listen to yourself mostly because of nerves and being a little too anxious. Speaking of being anxious, I did realize that my speech speed has slowed down much more, and I now teach at a normal pace. One thing I noticed I did a lot in the earlier teaching experiences is speed teach. This is when I rush through what I'm saying without knowing because I am so nervous to be in front of a group of people. However, this semester specifically, I have really improved on my shyness and have become significantly more comfortable in front of a large crowd.

Another aspect of my teaching that still needs work is my time managemnet. Thanks to my time coding assessment I am able to see exactly how much time I spent on different areas of teaching such as management, activity, instruction, and waiting time. Although my time code sheet does show good numbers, I could still improve upon them. I do very well with avoiding any waiting time and I'm always working on something with my students. I do just enough activity time, but could still use more since this is "physical" education. My best bet would be to replace some of my instruction time with more activity. I need to work on making my introductions and directions short and to the point so that I can provide the maximum amount of activity possible.

Another problem that I have when I teach that is just a bad habit is my language. No, I do not mean I curse and say bad words when I teach, I mean that I say some words too many times, or I say the wrong word in certain situations. While going over my verbal transcript for this lab I noticed that I will say "alright" at the start of almost every sentence. Of coarse, I can still be a great teacher even though I use that word many many.....many times, however, it would be much more professional and sounds more professional if I could cut out repetitive words like that. Another mistake I seem to make a lot is when I use the word "guys" to refer to the class. Today, many people refer to boys and girls as a group as guys, and no one really seems to mind that much. However, when being as professional as possible it would be more than expected to say the more politically correct term when referring to a group of people. This is probably my worst habit and will be the hardest to break. I need to work on putting words like "everyone" or "class" into my vocabulary during my teaching journey.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Skill Lesson, Take 2...and ACTION!

This time around I definitely feel that i was much more comfortable in teaching the skill that I chose. The first time teaching this I did not really know what to do and what to say. I was missing a base guideline that I now have and used to improve my lesson. I stuck with teaching the "set" in volleyball, because it is a skill that I know well from being a setter on my high school team for a few years.

The second time I taught the class I was able to introduce myself more clearly and say what we will be doing that day much more understandable for the students. I was also able to teach the skill more quickly so that I could get into the activity faster. However, I could have still shortened my lesson and extended my activity a little more so that I could give a little bit more feedback to the students. There was a little mishap going on when two students were asked to misbehave and exclude themselves from the group. However, I think I did very well noticing and responding to them right away. The only thing I did wrong is turn my back the rest of the class when giving my attention to the misbehaving students. Next time I will make sure I am able to see everybody. I can still see different areas that I wish to improve in and will work on before my next teaching experience.

Working on my time code assessment form helps me map out exactly what I need to arrange in terms of my scheduling and timing of my lessons. The other form that we filled out was the feedback analysis form which will also really help me pin point exactly who I gave feedback to and what kind of feedback I gave so that I can improve on those areas as well. Another area of my teaching methods is my language. A good tool we have is the use of these videos. This allows me to look back and analize exactly what I said and how I said it. I now noticed a difference in my enthusiasm and excitment which I believe is a key thing to improve because all students, at any age are able to detect whether or not you are into the activity you are teaching. My verbal transcript goes over my word for word analysis of my Lab 2A teaching lesson.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Getting thrown in the ring

First day of EDU 255, and right away we got thrown into teaching our first lesson. Lab A is basically a pretest to see where we are at with out teaching abilities. This is a good way to show us where we need to work and improve upon. After about only a few minutes to decide what I was going to teach I decided that a volleyball set would be good since I was a setter on my high school team. So, in the blink of an eye, I was in front of the class and teaching the set.
After watching myself teach a set in volleyball to a few students in our first day in EDU 255 I realized that I need to show a little bit more enthusiasim so that my students will give me enthusiasim in return. Although I am interested in the subject and I am truly having a lot of fun while teaching I should work on showing it more and not keep it hidden. It is a true fact that emotion=emotion when it comes to kids. If you are putting in all you have, they will do the same. If you are giving barely a breathe of effort, they will not be trying either. This is nothing major, and something I could easily work on and fix, because it is only a matter of listening to myself speak and making sure I am showing exactly how I feel. Another point that I need to address is making sure I maintain a safe environment so that none of my students get hurt. While teaching today I did not realize that there were many volleyballs rolling around and that can be a potential ankle breaker. Professor Yang zoomed the camera on these balls to let me know that it is something I should be more focused on. Otherwise, besides these minor bumps and scratches, I did well and felt very comfortable teaching in front of students and I also felt confident in knowing what I am teaching. I believe that my strongest characteristic is that I am really not that shy in front of people. I do not find it very difficuly to speak to large crowds, and I enjoy being in the spotlight(most of the time).

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Danyl Johnson, Inspiring Performance

After seeing this performance on the show "Britians Got Talent" I was completely amazed and inspired to become a better performer in front of crowds. Danyl is a teacher and obviously shows a natural talent for performance. It is my dream that someday I could become as comfortlable in front of crowds as Danyl Johnson is.

There is no limit to what this type of person can influence among various crowds. That is what defines a quality teacher. A teacher should be able to influence and inspire others to be great at whatever their desire and dream may be. In physical education I can use my teaching abilities, that will someday be effective, to inspire children, teens, and adults to change their bad living habits and develop and more healthy lifestyles and start living their lives to the fullest and savoring every moment.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Lab 6 at St. Mary's

The last day of St. Mary's went very well most of the time. I say most of the time because there was a few mishaps that happened between some of the kids but it was not that big of a deal. Today's lab was an easter theme and my group along with other groups came in with bunny ears to lighten up the atmosphere. My group was down in the cafeteria and we played a relay game where the kids had to run to a bucket in the middle of the floor and pick an easter egg, open it up, and do what the piece of paper said that was inside them. The game went great and all the kids had a blast. We also used music and I think it is a really good idea to use music in future classes becasue it helps the kids get more into it because the atmostphere is good and gets students in the right mood. However since we had the bunny ears, some of the little girls starting fighting over them and a few girls started crying and I had to deal with that problem. Other than that the day went great and the whole lab was a great close to this coarse.

Lab 5 at St. Mary's

Today was another day with Pre K. Once again I find dealing with the Pre K kids is much easier than the older kids. I think the reason for this is because the younger kids are still so innocent and haven't developed that wise attitude most kids get as they get older. The Pre K kids I find to be easier also becasue they are so into whatever activities we are doing for them. They love very simple things to as long as your game is easy to understand, and does not take long to set up and get started, then the kids will be completely into it. Today we played "zany zoo" which is great for these kids because they love acting like animals. The game is simple, easy to explain, and a lot of fun. We also had to read a book for the young kids. I think this is the hardest activity to do with these kids because they get so excited and start to get a little out of control. When you are sitting on the chair the kids start to climb all over you, but once you get the story started they sit down and listen nicely.

Lab 4 at St. Mary's

This was the fourth lab at St. Mary's and I think it went the smoothest so far of all the labs. Today's theme was about food and our game was called "popcorn". This game involved the kids all splitting up into three groups. One group would be behind a tall wall of mats, and the other two teams standing on the other side of the mat ready to catch flying balls(popcorn). The team that is behind the mat will be the ones throwing all the balls over the wall. The point of the game is for the kids on the side catching the balls to catch as many for their team as possible. Today went very smoothly because by this point I really knew the kids well and pretty much knew all of their names. When you start to know these kids better and understand how each of them act, it is easier to work with them and figure out what each would want to do. You can also prepare for different situations that you can expect to happen from past experiences.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Lab 3 at St. Mary's

Lab 3 was definitely one of my favorites because the theme worked really well with everything. My group did the activity "Empty Bucket" which is kind of like our last game, "Zanny Zoo". This involved kids picking different tasks out of a bucket and then performing them. We had told the kids that they were training to become super hero's and that they needed to try really hard to become one. The kids loved this and were very excited to participate and become super heros. When ever there is a good theme that kids are really excited about, the activity runs much more smooth. An important thing that I noticed at St. Mary's is that the key to getting a kids attention and getting them to play a game is to give them a reason to play. When the theme is fun and interesting the kids are more interested in playing. Overall, our game went great and it was once again very usefull to have more than one person helping out. My group of 5 was able to each attend different kids and show them the right way to perform tasks such as a slide, hop, skip, or jump. This is very important especially when other people are trying to asses them.

"I have a dream" by Martin Luther King Jr.

Reading the speech analysis of Martin Luther King Jr's speech "I have a dream" really gives me good advice for being a good speaker. When I become a Physical education teacher, I will be speaking in front of many classrooms and possibly even conferences depending on where my career takes me. One thing that is important in presentation is the was you present. Of coarse the material is important and the base of the whole concept, but if you cannot get your point across to whomever you are trying to teach, your philosophy will be lost and forgotten and nobody will remember what you did. Already I believe that I have good presentation skills. I tend to get really nervous when I have to speak in front of a crowd, but with me, the butterfly's go right away when I get up there. I think it is the anticipation that gets to me before a presentation. Once I get up in front of whoever I am presenting to I feel much more relaxed and I am able to talk with confidence and with a loud projecting voice. My tone is something that really does not need much work, however how I say things needs to be improved. Some good advice from this article is to use certain words that describe your theme as much as you can. It will, in a way be a subliminal message to the people listening. Also use metaphore to enhance the listeners/readers attention by describing things with much more detail. Mr. King did this in his speech with statements such as "joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity” [paragraph 2]. Overall, Martin Luther King Jr. was probably, in my opinion, one of the best speakers in history. However, our current President Barak Obama is very good too. I look up to him because he really knows how to appeal to every type of person in America, whether they are old, young, black, or white, it doesn't matter.

from http://sixminutes.dlugan.com/2009/01/18/speech-analysis-dream-martin-luther-king/

Lab 2 at St. Mary's

Today is the second day that we are teaching at St. Mary's, and it is more structured than the last lab. The first lab was more for getting to know the kids before we get into really teaching them activities. Today was the first day that we really go in as teachers and get the kids going in games. My group was the second group to go, and we had a game planned called "Zanny Zoo". I really enjoyed this game a lot and thought it was a lot of fun. We first learned how to play the game in class before lab so that we were ready with how to execute it, and so that we could make and adjustments and variation before St. Mary's. It was good that we had this time because we definitely needed to make sure we knew how we were going to structure this game and lay it out. In lab, we set up the game, and I volunteered to be the one to lead the game. I know that I need to volunteer to be the leader as much as I can so that I get the most experience I can out of these labs. Anyway, I taught the kids how to play the game and it went very well. Right off the bat I knew some techniques with getting the kids attention. I knew that I had to be loud, stern, confident, and really make it look like I am really into the game that I am teaching. If the kids know that I dont want to play the game, then they wont want to either because they will think that it is a boring game. While the game is going on it is very important to make sure things stay under control. I really need to make sure I develop the skill of running a whole class because in the future, chances are I will be the only teacher in the class, meaning I am responsible for everything that happens. For now, lab is much easier because we have groups of 4 working together and we can have each person take care of certain groups of kids. It is much easier to keep an eye on everybody. One example of what may go on behind your back is when I caught one kid hitting another kid. There was no major fighting but the kid gettting hit was really getting annoyed and luckily I was there to stop it and help the kid out.

Lab 1 at St. Mary's

Today was the very first day that we attended lab at St. Mary's school. Initially I was really excited to start teaching the kids and really getting involved with what I will be doing for the rest of my life. But at the same time I was very nervous for many reasons. One, I was nervous that I wouldn't be good at handling the kids at all, and that they would be all over the place. I was also worried that they all hated me for some reason. Second, I was nervous to perform my teaching skills in front of the experiences lab instructors, my professor, and all the teachers that were there at the school. I know now that this is the beginning and I should expect to mess up, and that the kids are not always going to listen to me. When I first arrived at the school, I saw all the kids running around and I was still nervous, and I wondered how I was going to be able to bring them all together. However, after a few minutes watching the kids, and other instructors doing there job, I became much more calm and confident that I could do this job very well. I then went and did exactly that. When it was our turn to do a game, I came up with one right away, took charge, got the kids together, explained the game in a simple fashion, and executed it perfectly. The kids loved my game and they all behaved perfectly. I felt really good after this and knew that I had just developed a good foundation for my teaching career, and that there are many good labs to come.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Bring Dodgeball Back to Schools

The article written by the National Association of Sport and Physical Education on Dodgeball in physical education classes brings about some good points. In the game of dodgeball, there is a great chance the less athletic students that may need the most physical activity because of their health, are the ones getting picked on, and taken out first. I agree with this in some cases, knowing that that situation is always possible. However, simple variaitions made on the game would solve that problem, making the game more fun for everybody. Another argument that this article stated was the fact that kids get hurt becuase they are the target. I disagree with this because I believe that there is a much greater chance of a student getting hurt in some of the other sports such as football, hockey, and soccer, that are taught in our schools curriculum today. Many people tend to generalize dodgeball with the movie that came out a few years ago. First of all, the characters in that film were all grown men and women who are much stonger and can throw much faster that any student in grades K-12. Second, they were using heavy rubber kickballs, while in the league that I play in outside of school at home, we use 8' 1/2" foam balls. Of coarse, if a physical education class is using heavy rubber balls, or sometimes volleyballs, someone is going to get hurt. But that is the fault of a poor physical education teacher. In my league, using the foam balls that work equally well, not a single person has been injured (I have been playing for 4 years). Playing dodgeball the normal way with the normal rules is harmless, however other variations are possible if schools are not convinced. Variations such as making everyone throw with their weak hand only, or make a different target instead of the student, like a cone or ball, also make this game worthy of coming back into schools. Dodgeball also can improve students motor skills greatly, and even more than some other sports. Besides track in high school, Dodgeball was the only sport that I stuck with. After 4 years of playing this sport I found that it really keeps me in shape, and my hand eye coordination and reaction time improved a great deal. If the game of dodgeball should stay out of the schools curriculum, then I believe the association should be taking a look a many other sports too and their dangers, because its only fair. As long as a school has a great physical education teacher who can turn any game into a usefull activity for all students, than any sport should be allowed, including dodgeball.