Monday, October 27, 2014

Get the Ball rolling!

The Pre-School and Kindergarten students have been busy with rolling and fielding balls.  The children discovered how to properly roll and field a ball; then practice the technique, individually in general space and at a wall.  Students worked in pairs, then in small groups, and practice rolling for accuracy and fielding.   A fun activity was called "hot rocks".  Students get in groups of five and knee-sit in a circle.  The ball is a "hot rock."  The leader will start the ball rolling to a player across the circle.  As the ball comes near you, the students use both hands to gently bat it away from them before the ball can ouch you  If the hot rock does touch your body, they were "burned" and needed to run once around the group circle - returning to their place to resume play.  This game stresses alertness, good rolling skills, and a good understanding the rules of the game.  Good sportsmanship is always stressed.  After the students had many opportunities to properly roll the gator ball - target practice was introduced.  Many various targets were placed out on the gym floor for them to try to "knock down."  These activities help to develop accuracy in rolling.  Defensive play was soon introduced as students became guards - preventing their opponent from knocking down the bowling pin.  Students quickly understand the importance of being both an offensive and a defensive player. The students love pin guard activities!
                                                      Pre-School  Partner Pin Guard fun!

Another favorite of the students is "Beat the Ball."  I love it because I can be sneaky!  All the students line up at the end of the gym on the blue zone.  I, too, line up with them holding a gator ball.  I quickly roll the ball fast to the other end.  As soon as the students see the ball leave my hand, they need to run as fast (with control) to the opposite end of the gym. The object of the game is for the students to try to "beat the ball" to the other end of the gym.  This is a great way for students to be challenged and they are always so proud when they do, indeed, beat the ball!  I always have some tricks up my sleeve to make it more entertaining and fun!  This week I will need to get out the magical pumpkin ball to challenge them!   We will continue to work on more ball skills.  Throwing, catching, and bouncing balls is next.  There are endless activities of fun with balls!  

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Fitness in always important!

My students are quickly realizing the importance of fitness.  Fitness is an integral part of each physical education lesson.  Students, beginning in pre-school, learn the physical fitness components:  cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility, and body composition.  All students in grades 1-4 participate in fitness testing.  The mile run measures cardiovascular endurance.  The first graders run a 1/2 mile.  The shuttle run measures speed and agility.  The curl-ups measures muscular endurance of the abdominal muscles.  The pull-ups and bent arm hang measures muscular strength.  Lastly, the sit and reach evaluates the flexibility of the hamstrings and the lower back.  The students really seem to enjoy the fitness testing.  They are very motivated to do their best in each test.  Improvement is stressed as we will re-evaluate all students later in the spring.   We started our classes with many fun fitness warm-ups:  go bananas, flexibility tag and body composition tag.  Pre-school and kindergarten students are not evaluated, however, they are introduced to many fitness exercises throughout the year. Here are some pictures of my students demonstrating fitness exercises - look at their smiles!  Of course they love fitness! 

Look Mom - no hands!  This is called the Superman or Superwoman lift!  It is a great
exercise to strengthen the back, legs, and shoulders - give it a try!

                                 Don't forget balance!  At ALL ages - balance is important!
                                 Just look at their focus!  Tree pose, very solid and grounded
                                                             Pre-Schoolers rock!

    This is the difficult "crab pose" - great for the core, arms and legs.  From this position the students are challenged to walk forward, backwards, and sidewards!

    Pre-schoolers demonstrate the "tuck" position - they are also demonstrating smiling!

Students in grades 1-4 learn how to perform the bent arm hang.  It is a timed event and the chin must remain above the bar.  Muscular strength, muscular endurance, perseverance (CARE theme for the month of October) and heredity plays a part in this difficult task!  This is a first grade student!

Skating begins on Tuesday, October 21st for grades 2 and 3

Skating begins on Wednesday, October 22nd for grades 1 and 4

All students are required to have a helmet, skates/guards, gloves, and jacket

Students in grades 1 and 2 should wear snowpants - however, snowpants are encouraged for all students.  Thank you to all parents that have volunteered to help in the locker room.  The Minnesota Wild is off to great season - I can't wait to see my students skate too!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Fire Safety Games!


Throughout the month of October (fire safety month) my students will participate in many fun  fire-related activities.  Here you see the kindergarten students playing a fire safety relay.  We discussed how important it is to be "fit" as a firefighter!  As a fireman goes to the scent of the fire, they are unaware of who they have to save.  It could be a small baby, a large adult, or anything in between!  In this relay, the students are quickly moving around the cones carrying various shapes and weights of objects.  They loved it - can you hear all the giggles?!   I also played this game with my older lower school students.  They soon realized and respected the importance of being a strong and fit firefighter!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Manipulatives unit - throwing and catching balls and bean bags!

All of my classes (grades 1 - 4) enjoyed the many ball activities during the first three weeks of school.  Underhand and overhand throwing skills were introduced and practiced.  As you know, the ability to throw and catch a ball is very important.  Students were reminded frequently to step forward with the OPPOSITE foot from the throwing arm (opposition).  We will continue to work on a variety of ball activities throughout the year.  Some of the games played have fun names too:  Return of the Jedi, Fill up the basket, Catch a falling star,  Pool target, Fire and Ice, 10 Hoops, Pin Guard, and Bench Ball.  All of these activities required the students to use proper throwing technique, be alert, and demonstrate good sportsmanship.

Pre-Schoolers playing with gator balls!

 What kid doesn't like to play with balls?   Here you can see the Pre-School students playing with gator balls!   We are presently working on rolling skills.  Students are learning the proper technique to roll a ball.  They are  also working on rolling the balls toward their partner.  Lots of coordination is required to roll a gator ball!  The next progression will require the students to roll a ball between two cones without knocking them down!  Stay tuned!

Bean Bag Boogie Video

Pre-School Bean Bag Boogie

Pre-Schoolers have so much fun playing with Bean Bags.