With fitness testing pre-test just around the corner, I wanted to share with you some best practices that have worked for me with my students.
FYI – I introduce the test at the end of 2nd grade so that students are already familiar with the format and not overwhelmed as 3rd graders.
1. Demonstrate to the students what you are asking them to do. I use the Fitnessgram videos and fast forward to the actual skill part so that the students see it done correctly.
2. Have a few students demonstrate to the group proper form and technique. Use this as a teaching moment to show students what you are looking for, and what they will be helping their partner with.
3. Pair students with a partner (or allow them to pair themselves), and practice to the cadence. I line mine up down the center line with their partner sitting across from them. This gives my aide and I a chance to go and correct the mistakes as well as applaud the correct forms.
4. Introduce the score card and the responsibility that comes with the “scorekeeper” title. I always tell my students that if a score card look “suspicious” we will personally test that students one-on-one J!
5. Give each student a score card, and instruct them to write their name as the “student,” their partners name as the “scorekeeper.”
6. Now, you are ready to begin. I like to practice one day, do push-ups, curl-ups and trunk lift the next day, and finally sit & reach, pacing, and height & weight the third day.
7. I reserve the cart with computers so that the students can enter their own scores into Fitnessgram. They sign in with their student ID.
8. It’s really important to help students take ownership with this test. Don’t do it just because it is required. If you teach them what the scores mean and where they should be in the healthy zone, they will set goals to be in that zone J!
Fitnessgram video links:
Trunk lift http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PvYI3iPUHpY
Sit & reach http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_NL2Pke4NM
Click on this link to acces my scorecard from dropbox:
Scorecard (print on tag & cut)
Feel free to contact me with any questions of concerns. I am here to help you succeed!
Punt, Pass and Kick Skills
With three weeks of the school year gone already and the district Punt, Pass and Kick competition rapidly approaching, I wanted to take the time to share my instruction methods for teaching each of these football skills. These are my personal teaching cues, so please use them if they will fit your class and want you desire for your students to learn. I’m sure that there are many of you that have your own way that works great, but if you are searching feel free to use any of this.
I typically like to spend one class period for my third and fourth grade students working on each of these skills, starting with some kind of warm up and then showing the videos below. From there, I take the students outside, allowing them to split into groups of two or three. Once outside, each group is given a football and takes turns practicing the skills as a group. I encourage the students who are more skilled or who understand the skill better to serve as a peer coach for others in their group who may struggle initially.
By having students in small groups, it allows them to have plenty of repetitions practicing the skill and it affords me the opportunity to walk between the groups. I spend my time giving individual instruction to students or groups who are not grasping the skill and making notes about who my more skilled students are. I, unfortunately, do not have the time during the school day to allow every third and fourth grade student to complete the full Punt, Pass and Kick tryout, so I use these notes to identify my students who excel at each skill and assemble a more manageable tryout list.
Here are links to the videos I made and use for each skill. I show these directly to my students, accomplishing two things: my instructions are succinct so that I do not waste valuable skill practice time (I have a tendency to ramble) and to ensure that every student is getting consistently the same instructions.
Throwing a Football
Punting a Football
Kicking a Football
After we have spent a day practicing all three skills, the students play a variety of football games that utilize these skills along with running and evading skills. Tryouts take place during class with the condensed list that I assembled. Usually, these will be taking place outside while simultaneously, students who are not trying out are playing a football game. You can find ideas for games under the Invasion Games folder in the third and fourth grade resource folders.
I hope this provides you with a few resources to use as you prepare your students for this amazing event. Please feel free to leave a comment below sharing your best practices for teaching football skills and please share any games or resources you would like to add to the grade level resource folder by using the contact page link on the left menu or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org