Monday, April 8, 2013

I PLAYED S.O.S Today in PE

Today in PE I set up the game S.O.S.  It is a favorite of the students.  Not only does the game require great balance (I can control the objects used during game play) but it also encourages the students to plan, create, cooperate, communicate, strategize,  problem solve and collaborate with their team and members of other teams.

In this post I have also included two statements about play.  Both I feel are powerful.  Although I teach PE, I feel it is important that I include and incorporate play into my lessons.  I am passionate about Play and how PLAYING effects child development.

Basic Rules:
  1. Team must cross together.  No one is to be left behind.
  2. Your body can not touch the floor.
  3. Only the equipment you find on your island or boat may be moved.
  4. If you fall in, all tools are lost at sea and you must send out an S.O.S. and then go back to where you started. 
  5. Discuss safety, what equipment can be tossed and what can not.
  6. No standing on four wheeled scooters.
  7. Add or adapt rules per grade level or skill level of students.  Make specific rules for mini islands, ie., only one child on the ......
  8. For an extra challenge, give the students and "emergency pack" to transport to the other side.

Here are a few pictures.
I love to watch the kids play this game.  Every group has different equipment and every class finds  a new ways to use it.

Philosophy of Play

The principles of law-abiding citizenship, 
of individual initiative, 
of courage, justice, 
and perseverance, 
of community cooperation, 
and healthy living in general are learned 
to a considerable extent through PLAY.

The spirit of honesty, fair play, 
truthfulness, reliability, 
respect for authority and
 for others’ feelings, 
and many other homely virtues 
are acquired in the same way.
PLAY makes for a better mind in a better body. 
It induces keener perception, 
surer judgment,
better reasoning, 
sound emotions and a stronger will. 
It is effective in securing order and system.
-Two Hundred Games That Teach
By Laura Smith, 1923 

Dear over scheduled busy busy world,
Please leave me alone
I need to play for my future
It is my work so I can grow.
Play is nourishment
Like eating fruits and vegetables
And the air that I breathe.
Play is how I become Confident,
A Leader,
A team Player
A Humanitarian,
A Good Citizen,
A Contributor,
A Visionary.
Play is how I learn to Connect,
To Soar,
To be me.
Give me time and space
Freedom from rules and structure
Let me be creative,
Let me color outside the lines,
If I am play deprived
I die a little inside
I can’t tell you this
You are my voice
I need you to…

To view this poem in video form, go to  the Body Smart Blog at

Scan this QR code with your SMART Phone or iPad.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Dear Mrs. Jessel........

I never have time to sit and talk with my students.  In February I placed a mail box on the gym doors and invited the students to ask me questions or send me  letters.  It has been a lot of fun.  When the doors are closed I can hear them reading my answers and discussing what they want to ask me next.
Question box attached to the door.

Paper and pencils are attached to the door.