Keeping students active during COVID-19
Brompton Academy is a mixed secondary school and sixth form in Gillingham that believes learning should be dynamic, motivating and accessible inside and outside the classroom. Since COVID-19 the PE department has been determined to maintain a culture where students can participate in a wide range of PE opportunities and experiences.
Staying Active at Home
To encourage students to remain active at home the PE department has kept social media accounts up to date with daily PE lessons, challenges and tutorials. PE lessons are sent out via email and cover a wide range of activities, including cricket, volleyball, athletics and fitness. Keeping up with current trends, students have been taking part in Tik Tok dances, healthy breakfast challenges, and the toilet roll keepie uppie challenge which has engaged previously disengaged students. Live Wednesday Workouts take place each week which are accessible for all with little equipment or space needed to partake. Additionally, sixth form lessons are delivered online which have proven to be successful and allow the school to monitor participation.
Keeping Active in School
To support key worker students PE is being offered as part of their daily routine, with the option to complete two hours of PE or another creative subject. Students are offered a broad variation of socially distanced activities, such as crazy golf and yoga, to keep physically active and motivated during these challenging times. In addition to PE related activities, students are also given the chance to take part in cooking and games, for example making a parachute to stop an egg smashing!
Parental support during this period has been positive. Parents have praised the PE department’s online content and have completed lessons and activities as a whole family. Engagement trackers have been useful with BTEC students, allowing the school to provide support where necessary. Those that show evidence of completing both core and BTEC work receive praise postcards designed to reward excellent work and engagement. These have been well received by both parents and students.
Like many other schools the challenge has been a lack of feedback from students, meaning it’s been hard to measure the impact and effectiveness of work done. To try and overcome this the department has implemented a number of strategies including parental check-ins, engagement trackers and praise cards.
During lockdown members of the PE department have taken part in a number of opportunities to further their subject knowledge around rugby officiating and table tennis. Staff have also participated in, and presented, nutrition webinars to increase their understanding of the topic whilst improving their lifestyle during lockdown.
Social media platforms have provided the department with an opportunity to reach a wide range of students and they hope to continue this as lockdown is eased. The time has enabled the gathering of new resources which the department will continue to promote in school and at home to encourage students to stay active.
“Use this time to be productive, think of the year ahead and vision for the future. Focus on the current trends so students can relate, connect and enjoy.”