Hacking their class - Integrating Maths and Physical Education

This term I have decided to set myself a new blogging project - highlighting the innovative, creative and best practice of others.

Today's post looks at two of our 'small modules' which are modules made up of two learning areas, taught by two teachers over two 90 minute blocks on one day. The teachers see the students once a week. In these modules the learning areas of Maths (specifically Statistics) and Physical Education are integrated.

Just Do It! Then Analyse with Jill and Sally

In Sally and Jill's module 'Just Do It! Then Analyse' students take part in a variety of team sports and group activities. They will then look at statistics arising from this, that relate to how the student and others have shown personal and social responsibility (which links to our school wide, term long concept of citizenship). The learning objectives for this module are:

  • To make sense by processing and analysing data about personal and social responsibility.
  • To test by applying personal and social responsibility to sporting situations and seek feedback from others on this.

In talking to Sally about the development of the module, she mentioned the inspiration came from the work Tim Gander had done connect Maths, P.E. and social responsibility. The module focuses (I think) on the relationships strand of the Health and P.E. curriculum and the statistics is focused on the analysis of the data rather than the presenting of it. For this reason they have chosen to use Google Sheets which can, in a sense, does the work for them in presenting the data as graphs.

You can read Sally's blogpost here, where she reflects on last terms modules and the plans for this one.

There No I in Team with Bryce and Danielle

In Bryce and Danielle's module there is a similar mix. In the module 'There is No I in Team' students refine their performance in team sports including football and badminton, by producing their own statistics. This module involves a high level of physical activity and analytical statistics. The learning objectives for this module are:
  • To make sense by processing and analysing data about sporting performance. 
  • To refine by using feedback to enhance performance. 

In talking to Bryce about how the module came to be, he immediately pointed out, it just makes sense. Statistics is everywhere in sports, in fact it was the statistical data coming out of the Fifa World Cup that prompted Danielle approach Bryce with this module idea.

In talking to students from this module, their reasons for choosing this one always seemed to come back to the actual integration or mix. For those who weren't keen on Maths in the past thought combining it with P.E. somehow made it more palatable, a sort curriculum version of spoonful of sugar making the medicine go down. For others it was they loved both and the combo simply make it better.

The more I experience and observe integrated teaching and learning it makes me think of the saying by Aristotle - the whole really is greater than the sum of it parts.


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