I may have mentioned that I love my job, but it isn’t just me. My students love physical education. They come into the gym with excitement and anticipation. “What are we doing today?” Their expectations are high. I believe their expectations are high because they know they will be challenged, valued, safe and most importantly they know I care about them. I hear from other P.E. teachers that they have students who don’t want to participate. I don’t have this problem. I can’t say for sure why. But I do pay a lot of attention to my students’ opinions. I do an interest survey with my older students a couple of times a year. I rarely have students exercise just for exercise sake. High heart rates come with fun
active games, not running laps or calisthenics.
Take the challenge and give your students 5 minutes to fill out a survey. Questions I ask are:
What do you like most about PE?
What do you like least about PE?
What is your favorite activity in PE?
If you were the PE teacher what would you change?
What is your least favorite activity in PE?
I have to confess, I have changed some of my practices based on these surveys. Before the surveys I would often start class with a “warmup”. The warm up consisted of doing a few laps of a various locomotor activity, some exercises like 5 push ups… I rarely do this type of warmup now. We often will play a game of tag ( equivalent to running laps), sometimes the game will include a rule that if they get tagged they have a choice of 5 push ups, or 5 situps. Anytime students are sitting listening to directions, they are expected to be stretching.
I encourage you to try a survey if you haven’t ever done one. Let me know, even if you just email me privately, firstname.lastname@example.org the outcome.