Whole -School Physical Education Plan!
The first thing we did as a staff, after agreeing to embark on Active School Flag , was to review our Whole - school Physical Education Plan.We collaborated from January 2018 until December 2018, at which time our plan was ratified by the Board of Management. We are very proud of our plan.We decided to focus on improving our teaching of gymnastics in 2019, through attending CPD focused on this strand.
Equipment Room and New Equipment!
One of the next things we did after registering for Active School Flag in February, 2018, was to buy new P.E. equipment. We bought balls of all sorts, javelins, discuses, sacks for fun sack races, hurdles, beanbags, ribbons for dance and much more. Two girls from our Active School Committee tidy the Equipment Room daily and pump balls when required. We keep our Equipment Room well-stocked from year to year.
Each class in our school now has Physical Education for 1 hour minimum per week,40 minutes in the hall and at least 20 minutes in our own playground or outdoors on the school grounds (basketball court or front yard). All classes are taught, games, athletics, gymnastics , dance and outdoor and adventure activities each school year. We worked together to create a standardised timetable, so that all teachers are simultaneously teaching the same strand in PE each month. This works particularly well in gymnastics as we put out all of the mats and equipment each morning and put it back at the end of the day, so that time is not wasted setting it up for each individual class. There are many pictures in the school blog of our children taking part in all of these PE strands. Below are photos of children participating in gymnastics and athletics (running).
Use of our Local Amenities
We are encouraging teachers in our school to use our wonderful local amenities a lot more, particularly for the 'Outdoor and adventure activities' strand in P.E.. In the image above, a 6th Class is enjoying a P.E. lesson in Marlay Park which is only a ten minute walk from our school. In the second image, a 5th Class is enjoying a school tour ziplining in Zipit , which is only a ten minute drive from our school. This supports our Green Schools work too, keeping our carbon footprint down!
Swimming in Our Lady's and PAWS Water Safety!
As part of Active School Flag, we are encouraged to use our local sports facilities. We are currently on a waiting list for swim slots during school hours in our local DLR pool. Each year, we book as many slots as possible for fun swims during Active Week. Our Parents' Association organise swimming lessons for the children each year after school hours. We also ensure that PAWS water safety programme is taught to the children at least once every two years.
In 2019, we created a teaching resources area for our staff in our Equipment Room. We bound and laminated all PDST (Professional Development Service for Teachers) resources
Continuous Professional Development : Gymnastics Workshop
Our teachers participated in a gymnastics workshop in our school in 2019, just before we all embarked on teaching the gymnastics strand to our classes. All teachers worked together for the 6 weeks after the CPD to strengthen the delivery of gymnastics in our school. We hope to use our new school walkway in 2023 for maths trails, Geography Trails and much more..
Fundamental Movement Skills
All teachers are aware of the excellent Fundamental Movement Skills resource, including the really useful short movement skills videos. The posters are easily accessible for teachers, right outside the PE Hall!