Sunday, December 6, 2009

Pre-K in the A.M.

A few weeks back I went to the Pre-K classroom at St. Mary's at 8:00 a.m. Not to early for me especially since that is when I normally start to get up for my 8:30 class. The atmosphere in the morning is so much different than in the afternoon. They are calmer and listen more which is great. The children were working on a variety of assignments and were promised to have some free time if they all did their work. Free time is such a good way to motivate children to keep them on task. Some had difficulty while others seemed to move right alone. It's great to see the different levels that children are at. We see the differences in people all the time but kids seem to make it clearer and simpler. Free time was very different from after school. They had to be clam and not make a whole lot of notice which they do not do so well in the p.m. I also had to help walk them all to the bathrooms. It was great the way they were organized and sung songs about washing their hands and keeping their hands to themselves. This was a great experience for me and I got to see them and I hope they got to see me in a different light.

The Final Entry of St. Mary's

Where does time go. Last week was our last week at St. Mary's and it was a sad day indeed. For 5-Alive and I we had a bland day with but learned a lot about managing equipment. We didn't get to play or have fun with the kids since we were put on equipment duty. We had to build two shelf's and organize the closets for the St. Mary's P.E. staff. Even though it wasn't what we wanted to do for our last day we did it anyway. We put the shelf's together and put them in great spots and cleaned that place from top to bottom. Lets just hope it stays that way for a while. I am happy though we did get to end the day with a song, the YMCA. Everybody has a great time dancing to that song and it was a great way to end the day and the year. Goodbye students and staff of St. Mary's! You have taught me much about myself and helped me develop as a student and teacher. Thank You!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Things To Be Thankful For

I am thankful for having such great classmates for this year in motor development and all of the children at St. Marys. This year has been great and I look forward to many for year with working with children. My group (5-Alive) and I had such a busy weekend preparin for our class skits on Tue. so Mondays lab suffured due to us not being really prepared but with did the best with what we had. Mentally I could see that not only my group but others were just ready to perform their skit and have a break from school. I hope to make up for last week this week. My group though did have a few ideas for the children to work on some skills but nothing for the weeks kicking and stainary jumping skill. We were also didn't know we would be in the gynasim with the children but we should still have had been prepared. After, the games with moved downstairs were we played games, colored and talking to the children. We then moved but up stairs for some free time. The children are not the only ones that love free time secretly the adults love it to. We finally ended the day with a great dance the cotton eye joe. Everybody had a blast and it's sad to say that we have only one more lab before the fun has ended.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Fall is in Full Swing

Some of you might be wondering what my title may mean. Well it means that the season Fall is deffenitly here because I was attacked by a handful of pre-k children, each with a load of leaves to bombard me with. It was the most fun I ever had getting baried alive with leaves in my life. Working with the pre-k kids has made me think about maybe not working as a middle/high school physical educator. They are so much and don't have attitudes yet. They listin well and really know how to have fun with the most basic of things. I admire them for that becuase as an adult we forget along the way how to have fun and I make it a point in my blogs that these children remind use to have some from time to time. The good times continued in the classroom where there were only 6 children in the room. I guess everbody wanted to be outside on such a nice day but we had just as good a time inside. I started with drawing a picture, then moved on to an all boys group working with the blocks then I finished off with a shapes game. Next, was the best part of the day. My group (Five Alive) and I had to make an obsical course for the pre-k children. We made the game age apropreate and from their reactions they had such a wonderful time with such a basic course. We ended the day with an activity that all enjoy and that ways playing with the giant parashoot. We had diffrent task and games to complete, which everyone had a blast doing. Week in and week out I get a better understanding of the diffrent levels children are at and how their psycomotor functions develop over time. I can't wait for next lab.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Kids Reminding Us How to Have Fun

Last week at St. Mary's Elementary school was once again a blast. Last weeks theme was halloween but I was disapointed that nobody dressed up. My group and I started off in the cafeteria and spent around 15 mintues talking to the kids about their week and interest that they have. Then we moved to where all the fun begins, outside on the playground. I got caught up in a game of lava tag with a handful of students and they really remind me how old im gettting. We then proceded to the gymnasim where we played blob tag. Only fitting we played blob tag on a halloween theme day. The kids had fun for about 10 minutes of playing the game and one could tell that they were getting bored and looking for something new to do so we let them have some free time. The children then got a surprise from Suny Cortlands own mascot Blaze the Red Dragon. It was funny to see Blaze get stamped by children all pulling and togging on the costume. I felt bad for the poor soul in that outfit. The day seemed pretty mellow for me and others and it's good to have those days once in a while. There like a free gift and you got to take advantage and enjoy those days because there are many more wild and fun themed days ahead. We closed with a song that was also fitting for the theme, Michael Jackson's Thriller. The group modified the dance to three easy parts for the student's to remember and it was a lot of fun for the children and adults alike.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Defending Dodgeball + Kickball to the Max

I pick to defend kickball and dodge ball but the modified version of the game like bonzi and jail ball. The games to me aren’t really about teaching physical education but more on instant action. I can have kids play this game for 10-15 minutes and teach a lesson or have them play for 30 minutes on days I want them to be extremely active. Jail ball is like dodge ball but more fun for the kids and everyone plays even if you get out. It starts with two lines near the middle of the court that have a neutral zone all the students can go into. If somebody gets hit they go to jail and have to catch a ball from their teammates who throw it to them to get them out of jail. You can make the game more interesting with having a foam football that is the ultimate get out of jail ball that lets everyone in your team’s jail get out. I love this game because everyone has fun whether you’re the less active kid in the world to the most active, everybody plays and moves around practice the skills of throwing, aiming, timing, catching, and dodging. As a future p.e. teacher I only us Rhino balls that are soft foam and half the students only throw at other students from the chest down. Even if someone where to get hit in the head they really do not hurt, I have seen my fair share of students getting hit right in the face and all of them were fine. For kickball I loved to play bonzi. It is mostly played indoors and instead of having one base runner you can have as many people that can fit onto the base. When a student rounds home they can call out BONZI and they can then go toward first. This game is for all ages and the best part is everywhere in the gymnasium is fair game. If a child kicks and just nicks the ball it’s a fair hit and they can run to first avoiding an embarrassing swing and miss in kickball. I would use the Rhino balls again because they would great and are soft. Students can only get out if they get hit from the chest down, no shoulders or head.

Monday, October 26, 2009


We had a fantastic day at St. Mary’s last week. The theme was super hero’s and the kids and my fellow students had a blast. We had to incorporate running, hopping and galloping in our games. Myself and my group helped the first group with their game. They had a bunch of cards in the middle of a hula hoop and on those cards were movement task the kids had to do back to their lines or groups. The group first started to make such the kids could run, hop and gallop. We were working with 1st and 2nd graders and I was surprised that they all could do the gallop well. Those that had trouble picked up on it incredibly fast. There was music playing so when the kids were not going to the middle to get a card some of them decided to dance and they were not shy about their dance moves. It was a lot of fun. Next, was my groups game called Batman tag that we made up. We had a lot of rules and I thought it was too much for them to handle but to my surprise they understood the rules well. The kids that got to be Batman and the Joker had a great time and we made sure that they all got a chance to be one of the two before our time was over. Gender and ability didn’t seem to be much of a difference. All the students did well with the running, hopping and galloping but there was a difference between the age of the children and the willingness to play. We played a freeze tag game next with another group and they a mix between 2nd graders and I think maybe 4th graders. The older children did not was to participate. I recall there was a boy and four girls that just stood in the corner in the gymnasium and I tried my hardest to get them to play because they seemed shy or thought it was just a dumb game. The older children though were much better at hopping, jumping and gallop than those younger than them.
The first good teaching strategy was for the first game we played. Instead of throwing them into the game they had the students try and practice the skills needed for the day’s games. When it was time for the game every child was prepared. My group during our instruction to the kids we checked for understanding to make sure that they all understood the game. It went really well I thought but of course there were a few that didn’t know but once I helped explain it to them they got it and participated in the game. One thing that stood out to me the most was at the end of class when all the children were load, Tyler said “clap once if you can hear me” and then said “clap twice if you are quite.” That stood out because it worked with the kids and it is a strategy I will have to use one day.