Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Lab Reflection

So the last lab has come to an end, and I am left to reflect on what I have learned from teaching at Saint Mary's. I think back to the very first lab and how incredibly nervous I was to teach my game to the students. This feeling steadily lessened as each lab flew by, and now I find that I am much more informed of the many skills that are necessary to become a quality physical educator. Coming into this course I wasn't sure what to expect, but I did come out with many value lessoned learned. I still have a lot of learning and work to do, but I now know what type of teacher I am striving to become. I love sports, and coming into physical education that is all I focused on. I have learned that there is so much more than just teaching sport skills, that a huge portion of teaching is not just the material, but the teacher themselves. Educators must give value to their lessons, a task which is difficult in physical education. Many teachers are met with critism from co workers, students, and parents. Those who do not see the importance in being physically educated. We must give reasons, have proof to back up the importance of fitness, and stand up for what we believe is important. In the classroom we must keep students excited, keep them guessing, and have a mysterious way of teaching. Teach through the physical, understand developmental stages to help in knowing how to break down skills. What I have learned in this course is just the tip of the iceburg, but I am happy to have a base knowledge that I can continue to expand.

Super Lab 6

Lab 6

This lab made a great ending to our visits to Saint Mary's. From the moment our class walked into the gym in costume it was easy to notice how excited the students were. My group and I were Pre K this week, and since the lighting in the classrooms were being fixed the class was relocated to the cafetria. We weren't able to use everything we came with, but still I thought our time with the group was well spent. Each student was given their own cape to decorate, and what each student came up with was awesome to see. Some students drew flowers, stars, their family or their own super hero. It was great to see how much the students liked the craft, and I had a lot of fun helping and talking to some of the children. When beginning our gym games, we started off with a simple super hero tag game to release some of the students energy. We then gathered them together, went over a few rules, and began games with the parachute. The Pre K seemed to love making waves, playing popcorn and especially playing shark. It was hysterical watching how they reacted to air conditioner, which was my favorite game they played. This week was a success, and I think our class did great. Everyone was very involved in getting into costume, and being excited about each activity. This was a great way to end at Saint Mary's.

Harry Harlow Rhesus Monkeys

In this study, Harlow used two groups of baby rhesus monkeys that were removed from their mothers. They were put into individual cages, each one containing both a terrycloth mother and a wire mother. One group had a wire mother that provided milk and a terrycloth mother did not, the other group had the reverse. Harlow found that the monkeys clung to the terrycloth mother whether or not in provided them with food. This shows the need for comfort when a baby is developing, having either a mother or father figure that they can find comfort with is healthy.
The study also showed that monkeys fed by both wire and terrycloth mothers gained the same amount of weight. But, those with wire mothers had trouble digesting the milk and suffered from diarrhea more frequently. Harlow explained this result as an lack of comfort that caused psychological stress on the monkeys.
This proves that love and comfort are vital to childhood development. Deprivation can lead to long term issues including profound psychological stress, emotional distress, and could even lead to death. Once the vital stage from birth to six months comes and goes, and there is no comfort present, the problems associated are nearly impossible to fix even if comfort is presented later on. This same type of development is showed in humans as well. Like rhesus monkeys, young children are attached to their mother or care giver. The only way these infants will go out and discover the world is if they have the support and comfort from these figures. For this reason, comfort is essential to the development of infants, because only with this support can children venture on their own to develop their fine and gross motor skills.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Buzz Lightyear Flies into Lab 5

Lab 5

Our class was outside for this weeks lab, which shook things up just a bit. Being outside seemed to make the students more hyper, and there are obviously more distractions. How warm it is, the wind velocity, rain, sun, all of these elements of weather can affect a lesson. With this said, when teaching lessons outside I must be prepared for these variables by having alternative games, and patience. When watching the gymnasium group teach their games, it seemed at first that the students did not understand and were not focus on the games. But, once more instruction was given, and more time to perform the tasks, the students seemed to settle into the activities. Another important skill to have is the ability to change up the classic schoolyard games. Learn to alter games like kickball, dodgeball, and baseball into more active games that keep students moving. Small, creative changes can make games much more enjoyable and exhilarating for the class. With all said and done, I think this lab went quite well. Our class was met with some challenges, and everyone still stayed focused, and made the best of each situation. This lab was a valuable learning experience because it was our first time teaching outside. The students were very active, and a lot of fun. As we played kickball I found myself laughing to myself at how funny the students were being. I really enjoyed myself, and it was nice to be outside for a change. I was very happy to see that almost every student participated this week, and each of them seemed more willing to participate. Promising the class that they would play kickball or mat ball after we finished our games seemed appealing to them. I had fun this week, the students cracked me up, and I was glad to have things switched up. Everyone did well and learned quite a bit this week.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Easter Hops into Lab 4

Lab 4

I thought this week’s lab went extremely well. My group and I were assigned to the Pre-K class, and so far this has been my favorite age group to work with. They are all so cute, and so enjoyable to be around. They ask you questions, tell you stories, and are excited to do your activities. All said in done, they simply are fun. My group and I made a large poster, and we also printed out different Easter images to have the students color. We then took the images and put them inside the cross that was on the poster. The poster was then hung in the gym inside the Pre-K area. I felt this craft was nice because it added some color to the gym; it wasn’t just a sheet of paper the students colored and brought home, but rather something they could see everyday hung in the school. Our game was a success too, and the students seemed to enjoy it. It was surprising to me how much they liked the eggs we used for the tossing. Hah at one point several students all bombarded me seeing if they could have one to take home. And not only were our Pre-K students taking part in the activity, but I noticed that several of the older children were watching and wanted to know what we were doing. For another lab it seemed that music really helped the involvement in the games, and helps the children to cut loose and have fun. Our group really did our best to incorporate the Easter theme into our plan for the lab, and this too seemed to get the children excited. I hope that for the last two labs our class can continue to involve the theme. All said and done it seemed like everyone this week really did well. We all had our activities planned out well, involved music, and got into the Easter spirit. This in my eyes was our most successful lab yet, and I hope the rest follow suite! I really did have a blast, and I hope the kids did too.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Childhood Growth and Development

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Dinosaur Train Rolls Into St. Mary's

Lab 3

Yesterday was Lab 3 at St. Mary's and the theme was Dinosaur Train. The kids were very wired and energetic, and it seemed that the first two groups to teach struggled with getting the students focused. I think this lab showed all of us (Cortland students) how important it is to think through how you will explain your games. And it seems the best method of teaching is to incorporate specific instruction, use demonstrations, and language that is understood. The Pre-K group did well giving clear instructions to their students, they used hoops, jump ropes, and instruction to get the young children to understand and stay involved in their games. The younger the children are, the more it seems you have to use visual instructions, and verbal explanations. This week, my group was in charge of putting together an ending game, song, and cheer. I felt that our activities went great, even better than we had hoped. We did our best to really incorporate the dinosaur theme, and the kids seemed to love it. Ben created a good visual tool for the Dinosaur Hokie Pokie, and I thought it really helped the success of the dance. I thought the lab ended on a very positive note, and it was nice that our classmates helped increase the enthusiasm of the students. This lab was a lot of fun, and I think each one of us learned some valuable teaching lessons from it.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Textbook Assignment 1

Out of the many issues facing children in the U.S. today, the most crucial include the rapid raising of childhood obesity, in-school and community violence, and early puberty. There are several aims and goals that branch from the development of physical education. Some goals include affective growth, movement skill acquisition, cognitive learning, physical activity, and fitness enhancement. Biology of the individual, conditions of the learning envirnoment, and requirements of the movement task are all factors that explain the relationships that lead to the development of the whole child. Individual appropriateness is based on the concept that each child has unique timing and patterns of growth and development. These activies are geared towards each child's particular stage of development. Age-group appropriateness is based on both age and grade level. This develops a pattern of behaviors to emerge that are typical of specific age groups; this is benchmark type of concept, basing what children are taught off of what is normal for that age group.
Fundamental movement skills of locomotion include hopping, jumping, and leaping. Examples of manipulative include throwing, kicking, and bouncing. Axial, static, and dynamic movements are all patterns of stability that can be observed. Bending and turning are included in axial movements, while rolling and dodging are examples of static and dynamic postures. Physical fitness is defined by the combination of health and performance related fitness.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Lab 2 Olympics Theme

Lab 2

This lab went much smoother than the first one. My group was more prepared, and seemed more comfortable being in front of the students. Our games did not go perfectly, but we tried our best to communicate and teach them. I am not sure about Ben and Jen, but I feel that each week I learn more and more through experience. It's stressful, walking into St. Mary's, yet once we dive into teaching everything seems to move quickly. The group of students we had were fun this week, they constantly wanted to play beaver and blob tag, it's like nothing else crosses their mind! "Beaver tag, Beaver tag, Blog tag!" That's all my group seems to hear. We convinced them to try a few new games, and one they really seemed to enjoy was zombie tag and mirror tag. Zombie tag was hysterical, they all got really into acting the part. In mirror tag they absolutely love freeing other players from their frozen poses. Down in the cafeteria, Jen was a huge hit with the kids. She must have made ten different fortune tellers and all the students ate them up. All in all it was a very productive lab, and I feel that our whole class has settled into St. Mary's.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hall of Shame Games

The list of games included in the Hall of Shame hit close to home for me. Games including dodgeball and kickball were all played in my physical education classes throughout my primary and secondary education. And to be completely honest, I enjoyed playing them, I had fun, but I never thought anything past that. Now that we have discussed the issues in class, my eyes have really opened up to the many things that are wrong with these activities. The main issue I have with dodgeball and kickball is the amount of standing around, both on and off the playing field. Players tend to stand around waiting for a ball to be thrown or kicked towards them, or they sit around on the bleachers after knocked out of dodgeball. But, these games do include throwing, kicking, accuracy, agility, and these can all be increased if we were to get creative and discover new and improved ways of playing.
One of the games I believe has some hope of salvation is kickball. In my high school we played a version of kickball called mat ball. In this style of kickball, there were panel mats or skill cushions placed as bases in the playing field. The players on offense could stop at these mats, and more than one person could be on them at any time. So if i was on first base, and the batter behind me kicked the ball right to the pitcher, I could stay on the mat instead of leaving and risk getting hit. This way, there is no limit as to who is on base. But, if even one toe comes of the mat, the player must run to the next mat. In kickball no more than 3 people could be on base, in mat ball, several students can be involved, and the order of base running can also be changed. So student may have to go to 2nd, then 3rd, 1st, and finally home to score, increasing the amount of running. On defense, there can be extra balls added. Surrounding the pitcher an additional 5 or 6 balls can be scattered. These balls can only be picked up and thrown if the original ball that is rolled towards the batter is contacted. This way, there is not just one ball rolling across the floor. Some players can focus on retrieving the original ball, while others pick up and throw the balls scattered around the pitcher. This version involves more people, and allows more action and movement. Players that do not wish to participate can watch each mat to see if a player steps off, or stand behind the pitcher and call whether the pitch is a strike or ball. To justify having my classes participate in mat ball, I would argue that the game incorporates NY Standard 1 and NASPE Standards 1 and 2. Hopefully this version of kickball would work better, and maybe, just maybe get the game off of the hall of shame list.  

Sunday, February 14, 2010

First Day of Lab

Lab 1

I can't lie, this first lab was frightening to me.  I have never in front of kids that age, I am used to coaching in front of teenagers.  Young students were quite different, and teaching that age was a whole new ball game.  I had difficultly trying to get the students attention to teach a tag game, but I tried my best to forget it and have fun.  The students my group was placed with were very fun and energetic.  I sat with two girls during snack time who were good friends.  It was funny to hear their conversation, because if it wasn't for the pitch in their voices, one might think they were old women.  They talked about how long of a friendship they had, chores at home, watching their siblings grow up.  I often wonder what I talked about with my friends as a child, and hearing them talk answered my question.  At the end of lab, through experience and observation, I walked out of St. Mary's with a lot more knowledge then I walked in with.  Though things did not go as well as I had hoped they would, it was just the first lab.  I know my starting point, and can only improve from here.  I am excited to learn more each week, and through experience become a better communicator and teacher.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

First Day Of PED 201

Our first class of PED 201 created a feeling of excitement and fulfillment to be in the Physical Education program here at SUNY Cortland.  It lead my thoughts towards a goal of being a teacher of students, not subjects.  That PE is not just sports and competition, but also of developing students as individuals, showing that being active not only promotes a healthy life, but also teaches a person lesson that can pertain to many things in their future.