Pam Liewer's Teaching Philosophy
Physical Education classes can be one of the most important
avenues for children to become healthy, active individuals.
I sincerely believe that if you teach young children the
basic principles of fitness and the importance of it, they
will become healthy, active adults.
I believe it is my main
responsibility as the Physical Education teacher to provide
activities that stress cooperation, team work, and fitness
along with teaching the children at a very young age to set
goals and teach them to work towards meeting their goals.
In order to teach the “whole” child,
it is also important to integrate core subjects into your Physical
Education activities and program.
I believe it is also my responsibility
to stress character education and life skills throughout
all areas of the Physical Education program. My fundamental
goal is for children to become thoughtful, healthy, goal
Project Fit America Kick Off Event at Effingham Elementary,
Kansas City Chiefs Mascot “K. C. Wolf” vs.
Atchison County Community High School Tiger Mascot
on the Pole Climb
Lancaster Elementary School
Cummings ELementary School
Effingham Elementary School
Use of the Project Fit America Program
I am so excited to have Project Fit America at all three of my
elementary schools! This is my 23rd year of teaching Physical Education
in Atchison County School district and now that I have the PFA
program at all three schools, I feel equitability has been established
and I can offer the same exciting program at all three centers
for all kids in grades Kindergarten through 4th grade. Having been
a PFA teacher for five years now, I have been thoroughly trained
with the outdoor and indoor equipment and with the curriculum.
I start the beginning of each school year training the children
on the equipment while stressing safety. Kids are tested on the
stations, along with regular fitness testing; they set their personal
goals, and quickly begin Station Stars. Every class session begins
with a quick warm up fitness activity that very frequently uses
the fitness cups.
of these fitness warm up activities are “overs
and unders”, partner push up high S's jumping rope,
heavy hoop activities, tummy toughies, ABC exercises, follow the
leader, zookeeper, and many others. Following one of these activities
is a core lesson based on state Physical Education and Project
Fit America standards. Very often when we are outside for class,
we use the Outdoor Project Fit America equipment with many of the
activities from the PFA core curriculum and others Steve Cox taught
me to use with my classes. Students' favorite games include
Capture the Pins, Beat the Ball Covey Style, Breakout, Super Shuttle
Cup Race and many others. T.C.C. is stressed during all activities.
In some form, the Project Fit America equipment is used on a daily
basis with all my students. As each student has set goals on the
outdoor equipment, I find children working on the equipment even
during their regular recesses.
How I Have Made PFA Work For Me
Through the use of the Project Fit America equipment, curriculum,
and training it has become very clear to me how easy it can be
to teach kids fitness concepts without really having to work at
it. Most of the children really want to succeed and be able to
perform on the outdoor equipment. I try to give the children ways
to build up strength to be able to climb the pole or the ladder,
and to jump, step or hang. I have seen children evolve from being
sedentary, unmotivated students to motivated, goal setting individuals
at a very young age. This
truly excites me to see this. Teaching has become more enjoyable
for me when I see students getting excited about their fitness
goals. The younger 5 and 6 year old get very excited when their
heart rates speed up. Many of them want me to "feel their hearts."
It is ultimately the biggest joy for me to see students take responsibility
for their own fitness levels and work diligently to improve them.
As previously mentioned, I now have Project Fit America at all
three elementary centers where I teach. The Station Stars program
is an integral part of all three schools. Students love to see
their names up on the “Stars” wall. Right above the “Stars” wall
is my new “PE Word Wall”. Each Monday of the week,
I chose a word that children hear in PE classes or is a fundamental
part of PE. So far, the first word of the year has been Fitness
and the next one was Muscle. Each student from grades Kindergarten
to 4th grade are give a half sheet of paper that looks like this:
The PE word of the week is: Fitness
Please write a sentence,
paragraph, of short story using the word of the week or you
may also draw a picture that describes the word or write
the word in a fancy, colorful way.
When students turn in their paper, I post it on the wall under
the word of the week for everyone to see. Children are very proud
of their work and love seeing their work and names on the wall.
years ago I started having a Fitness Recess at my elementary schools.
Students are divided into four groups and each of them rotates
to one of four different stations twice a week. One station is
4 ball soccer, one is a jump roping station, one is a station to
walk/jog laps, and the final station is Project Fit America stations.
This program is a supplement to regular recess and PE classes.
It serves as an excellent fitness break for kids and helps them
continue work on their fitness goals. When the weather gets bad
in Kansas, we turn to an indoor fitness recess and then I provide
fitness activities using the fitness cups 100% of the time. It
is fun to see the children progress from building one dimensional
cup structures to elaborate and very creative 3-D structures. T.C.C.
is at it’s finest during fitness cup use. Children use the
old childhood game of “Rock, Paper, Scissors” instead
of arguing and “Yellow Brick Students” are becoming
very plentiful to help others who don't quite get it yet.
I also incorporate the PFA outdoor equipment into some of my older
PE games. Instead of just jogging or being “out”, kids
go to the PFA area and perform on a station until they are “exhausted” before
they come back to the game. Other new activities I started as a
result of becoming a PFA teacher are Non-stop Kickball and Zookeeper.
By the way ...more to come .....!