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Teacher: D. Tom Davis who teaches at Fairforest Middle in Spartanburg, SC. D. Tom Davis can be contacted at DavisDT@Spartanburg6.k12.SC.US.

Name of Best Practice: Elective PE

Rationale/Purpose of Event: To increase the level of responsibility, participation and ownership in middle school Physical Education.

Suggested Grade Level: 6-8

Materials Needed: Sign up sheets for appropriate number of students and teachers. A list of activities that can be chosen for students to participate in. Pencils for each group.

Elective PE

As in any area of life we gravitate toward those things we have an interest in. With Elective PE the student becomes the consumer who buys into the program by being given the choice of groups and activities as well as the length of the unit.

At Fairforest we have three teachers who sat down and compiled a list of activities that we felt we could teach with competence. Our list expanded from the usual six to eight activities to thirty six activities. The courses run the gamut from basketball to yoga. We determined the length of some units if we felt certain areas would be overused (i.e., basketball) or had marginal value in a physical education program (i.e., whiffleball).

Students are then allowed to choose the group that they will work with, the activities, and the length of time in each activity. After the students have chosen the activities the teachers decide who is going to teach what activity and when the activity will be taught. This is only done with the seventh and eighth grades because we feel that certain skills must be taught in the sixth grade to prepare them for the next level of activity.

This idea sprang out of the writings of Daryl Siedentop on sport education. Teachers must be aware that more work will have to be done by them in order meet the needs of every student.

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Posted on PEC: 10/8/2001 and has received 108 votes.

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