G3 Gymnastics UOI

During this UOI, G3 learners have been inquiring into the ways in which we discover and express ideas, feelings, nature, culture, beliefs, and values.

In physical education, G3 learners have been exploring different gymnastics skills and choosing the ones they preferred to create their performance.

Our central idea was: “Performance is influenced by purpose and audience”

Having that in mind, learners thought of who would be their audience while performing, and why they chose to do that specific performance.

During the UOI, students worked on single point balances, headstands and handstands with or without support, different rolls, jumps, and vaults. They got constant feedback as they practiced their skills. Peer and teacher feedback.

I also found that visual feedback really helped them while performing different gymnastics skills and they were able to improve the skills as they understood better what to do or how to do it.

Below you can see some pictures of G3 gymnasts in action.

Next week, students would be performing in the gymnastics room. Some of them choose to do their floor performance individually, while others preferred to do it with a partner or in a small group of three or four gymnasts.

We will be filming their performances and will upload them to their drive after.


G1 Gymnastics UOI

G1’s gymnastics unit of inquiry is now in full swing.

Our central idea for this UOI is: Gymnastics involves making patterns in our movements.

Learners are practicing several floor skills, such as rolls, balances and different weight transfers.

You might have seen your kids in action already as I started to add some short clips of their forward and backward rolls on Seesaw.

Last week they worked on many different balances with a partner. Students understood how important is to control their bodies and have a good form while doing gymnastics. They collaborated to create their own balances with their partner and made sure they held them for, at least, 3 seconds.

Rhythmic Gymnastics Part 1

Last week we kicked off our Rhythmic Gymnastics UOI in G5.

Beforehand, I asked learners to think about this question:

How do We Move our Bodies More Efficiently and Safely?

You can click on your child’s class to read their thoughts:

Ms. Michelle’s Class

Ms. Lou’s Class

Mr. Garrett’s Class

During the week, learners have been practicing several gymnastics skills such as balances, rolls, and jumps. This is the first time for them to have a rhythmic gymnastics unit, however, they can connect their prior knowledge gained from learning and practicing these floor skills in artistic gymnastics in previous years.

I really like using provocations for student’s learning so I had them watching a short clip of the Worlds Championship of Rhythmic Gymnastics to get a better picture of what this sport looks like.

Our central idea for this unit is:

“Body control, smooth transitions and a variety of elements, helps to enhance a gymnastics performance.”

This week, G5 gymnasts will inquire into how to use different equipment, such a ball, a ribbon or a hoop and to combine it with different gymnastics skills.

I will be adding more pictures and short videos of learners as the unit goes on.




Making the most of Student Voice with Flipgrid in G5

I recently started to use an app called Flipgrid in my physical education classes. This app allows me to listen to students who are usually quiet in class or who struggle sharing their thoughts with the whole class.

Often times I feel like if I ask open-ended questions, I always get answers from the same few students who are used to share their thoughts out loud and feel more confident about their learning and knowledge. A lack of vocabulary may also stop EAL ( English as an Additional Language) learners from sharing with their peers.

Flipgrid allows students to create short videos to talk about any topic. During the Net Games unit, I created several topics to have students inquiring, thinking, and communicating their learning with me and among themselves.

You can have access to the different clips by clicking on the links below.

Students used shared iPads and created the videos in between games while others were still playing.

The quality of the image and the sound might not be great as it wasn’t the priority at this time.

As I mentioned earlier, my goal is to be able to listen to student’s voice and use it as a way to assess their learning in an authentic way.

Feel free to click on the links below to listen to G5 students

Ms. Michelle

5M Badminton Self-Assessment

5M Badminton Intro Game

5M Volleyball Games

Mr. Garrett

5G Badminton Self-Assessment

5G Badminton Intro Game

5G Volleyball Games

Ms. Lou

5L Badminton Self-Assessment

5L Badminton Intro Game

5L Volleyball Games

Movement Composition in G3

As a frontload of the How We Express Ourselves unit, G3 learners have been inquiring into the choreographic concepts of time, force, levels, and space.

Our central idea was: “Perfomances with a message can influence thinking.”

In PE, learners got together in small groups of their choice and started planning what they wanted their final performance to look like, what was going to be their message, and how they were going to share that message with their audience.

Together we created the success criteria and during every lesson, learners would plan and start creating their performances following the success criteria we agreed on. At the end of each lesson, each group would show what they had worked on during the class and would get feedback from their peers and from me. Based on feedback they would keep working on their dances and make the necessary changes.

It wasn’t an easy task for some groups as a few students were not always engaged or willing to help their team. Learners understood that in order to create their very own performances with a message, they had to collaborate, be open-minded and communicate their ideas with their peers.

Students were given the opportunity to choose the way they wanted to perform, as well as the music they wanted to have for their dance.

They also decided who they wanted to be their audience and where to perform.

We agreed on using a green screen app called “Do Ink” to have different backgrounds for their dances.

I filmed most of the groups on the field to get the green as the background. That idea was both, innovative and challenging as there are some natural factors such as the wind or the sun that are not helping while filming.

One group decided to do a shadow dance instead. They will be performing tomorrow for their class and their video will be soon added it to the shared folder.

Click on the link below to watch your child’s dance. Can you guess their message?

Ms. Anita’s class

Mr. James‘s class

Ms. Lisa‘s class

In addition, please listen to the reflection of this learner where she is trying to explain why her group was successful.

Here you can see a few pictures of students rehearsing or getting visual feedback from recording short clips on the iPads.

G5 Net Games: Badminton

To better understand net games, how to play them, and the transference between net games such as volleyball, badminton or tennis, G5 learners have been inquiring into the importance of footwork and interpersonal communication.

We started the unit with some volleyball games and we recently started exploring a new game for many, badminton.

Students played 1vs 1 rallies and they were challenged to use different shots, use shots that would make their opponent move and return to the court after each hit.

In addition, they had to learn how to serve properly.

Slowly, G5 students are starting to be aware of the spaces and the importance of footwork and correct grip.

As learners play games, I like to observe them and ask them questions to see if they are understanding their actions, if they have a plan, or if they are just trying to randomly hit the shuttle back to the opposite side of the net.

These are some questions I asked them during games to provoke their thinking:

How do you score in badminton?

What can you do to score in badminton?

What can you do to stop your opponent from scoring?

What way is the best to keep the shuttle in play for you?
Yesterday students played a “badminton intro game.” Thinking of what they do and why they do it during games, allowed them to better understand net games. In addition, they were able to develop the skills needed to play net games.

Sharing Understanding of Concepts in G1 using Seesaw

G1 students have been learning about different ball skills such as tossing, throwing, catching, dribbling and kicking.

They have been inquiring into the skills to send and receive a ball from a partner. Throughout games and activities, students are inquiring into how to perform these skills effectively.

Today learners were able to demonstrate and share the understanding of their learning using an app called “Seesaw.”

This is a great way to share authentic learning with parents. Students can watch their videos to listen to themselves explaining something, but most importantly, parents can see what their kids are learning and comment on the videos.

If your child is in G1, please do comment on their video as your feedback is like gold to them.


Net Games in G5

G5 students have been inquiring in net games.

We started “unpacking” our knowledge in net games. Below you can see what learners came up with:

Some ideas from the whiteboard:

  • There is an even number of players
  • You have to hit the ball or shuttlecock over the net
  • Unique scoring system
  • You need to move quickly (footwork)
  • You can use a racket, a paddle or your hand to hit
  • Must show sportsmanship
  • Eyes on the ball
  • There is a net in the middle of the court
  • Badminton, tennis, volleyball, and ping-pong are examples of net games.

Students started to work with a partner, practicing the skills and soon playing small games. So far we only have been exploring volleyball and soon will start playing other net games such as badminton.

We have been using an app called Flipgrid in class so learners can demonstrate their understanding of the skills learned in volleyball.

In addition, they had to film others and explain what their partners/team were doing (or not doing) while playing small games.

Supporting Learner Agency in G3

Last week we started a dance unit in G3.

As soon as I told learners that what was going to be our next UOI, I saw some happy, excited, disappointed, and worried faces.

I heard myself saying, you don’t have to love everything we are learning in PE but you have to give it a try. Then I thought, “how could I engage the disappointed, worried and scared students?”

So together, we looked at the central idea: “Performances with a message can influence thinking”

Then, I asked learners what they thought their performance could look like. What was something they wanted to learn and do?

Right away, everyone was engaged in conversations, sharing ideas and happy to have choices.

The next day, I used this video as a provocation. Looking at student’s faces amazed me. They were really hooked into the performances they were watching. At the end of the video, I asked them if they were able to understand what was the message of the performers and if they could use some of those strategies for their performances. Some could, others needed some support.

In addition, we used a question from a third-grade student to provoke student’s thinking:

                                 “How is Dance Important in Our Lifes”

Together, we started to shape our unit.

These are our lines of inquiry:

  • The choreographic concepts of time, force, flow, levels, and space. (Form)
  • Creating movement sequences in response to a narrative. (Perspective)

Learners are starting to think what kind of performance/dance they want to work on.

Letting Students Lead:

One way of thinking of learner agency is when learners have the ‘power to act’. When learners move from being passive recipients to being much more active in the learning process and actively involved in the decisions about the learning, then they have greater agency.
~ Derek Wenmoth, CORE Education 10 Trends

G5 Overnight Trip

Last week, G5 learners spent a couple of days in the VKirirom Pine Resort, in the Kirirom National Park.

For many students, it was the first time to be out, camping and spending a couple of days with their friends in a campsite so everything was new to them.

The campsite was beautiful, surrounded by pine trees. There was a field by the campsite that we used to do most of our activities.

After having a quick lunch and sorting out the tents, learners spent a couple of hours working with their groups on their PYPX activities led by their homeroom teachers.

Their very last task was to find pine cones, branches and another sort of stuff they could find in nature to make “WHO WE ARE” so we could read it.

For dinner, we cooked veggies and sausages on the BBQ and everyone enjoyed eating outside, with their friends, sitting on the grass and breathing the pure air of the mountains.

Before it got dark, learners participated in different activities, such as a strategic tag game and storytelling in small groups.

As soon as the sun set, we turned off our flashlights and some other bigger lights that were lightening the campsite and focused on the sky. It was amazing to just lay down on the ground with our eyes wide open and quietly enjoy the number of stars we could see. It felt like looking at a huge blanket of glittering, sparkly and shiny dots that kept twinkling at us.

One of the highlights of the evening apart from stargazing was to sit around the campfire, singing songs, roasting marshmallows and enjoying smores.

Learners slept in their tents and woke up early the day after. Breakfast was served in the early morning, and students got the energy they needed it to run with their teams in the orienteering activity.

Other activities, such as hiking, playing active and calmer games were given as a choice to students during that day.

We left promptly after lunch and were able to get back to school while everyone else was getting ready to go home.