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Observation in PE

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by esphillips, Oct 7, 2015.

  1. esphillips

    esphillips New commenter

    Hi all,

    I was just wondering, as I haven't got much experience in this area.

    Recently I have been "observed" in a gymnastics lesson for PE, and was told that the lesson didn't show progression. (This was a 'learning walk' with a SIP)

    This lesson was the third lesson in building a gymnastics sequence, and we were practising jumps using equipment (benches and mats) as well as travelling.

    The observers observed around 5 minutes of a session where we were recapping jumps. Children were grouped in mixed abilities and we were stopping to show and recap during mini plenaries. The observers left, and then we moved onto building more elements into our sequences.

    Today, I was told I was going to be reobserved, and that the lesson required improvement because 'all the children were doing the same thing and there wasn't much equipment out'.

    I wonder if anyone might be able to tell me what progression might look like during a gymnastics session, and even if I should be having another observation through a learning walk, and even if I should get all the equipment out for these lessons, as it was a lesson planned to use just benches and mats!

    A frazzled teacher
  2. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    I suppose what they were looking for is for you to group your children on ability. The weaker ones doing the basic gymnastic skills, with your more competent moving on to a more difficult task. Maybe mixed ability groupings would not be the best plan of attack here? I am no PE teacher though...
  3. esphillips

    esphillips New commenter

    Thanks - I was wondering if it would be ability groupings too, or use of equipment, though the LO was to create gymnastic sequences, so I would have thought differentiation would have come into length of sequence/type of jump or travel.

    Just took me by surprise, and am new to the school. Bit rubbish to have another obs too... :(
  4. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    it doesn't sound the best feedback in the world. I wonder how strong the observers were?
  5. stmha

    stmha Established commenter

    Gymnastics is not about using equipment, but it is about using the environment to enhance aesthetic movements. If you use a mat, for instance, it allows a cushioned landing when jumping from height. If you work in small groups, each with a mat and bench/form/box etc you have a range of levels/heights and surfaces to work from (turn a bench upside down and you have a beam). Don't forget the floor around the equipment is also a part of the 'space' to explore. Ensure your sequence exlores each level and all the space within the working area. You can have 6/8/10 working areas with 4/6 students in each area. The students can work individually or in 2's. If KS2 I wouldn't want too much paired working to begin with

    Using this approach allows several types of differentiation - outcome, task, process and support. Creating your sequence and allowing a degree of autonomy will mean that any observer will never see the children doing exactly the same task at any one time.

    Obviously you will to build up their vocabulary of movement. You may need to break from the sequence work to develop a particular skill, such as a forward roll, in which case create a small area for demonstrations and then send them back to their work space.

    Skill work can be done use reciprocal approach. Again this allows the children to observe and feedback to the performer. If observed whilst doing this part of the lesson, again the observer will see a range of activities going on whilst they are practising their forward rolls.

    If you need any more specific advice feel free to pm me.
    monicabilongame likes this.
  6. monicabilongame

    monicabilongame Star commenter

  7. tall tales

    tall tales New commenter

    What stmha said -
  8. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    Why not have a chat with the PE co-ordinator as well, who should be able to add to the good suggestions given by other posters.

    Just a word of caution: some primary school PE policies do not allow untrained teachers to teach young children how to do forward rolls - yes, it does sound rather draconian but it is worth checking.

    For what my opinion is worth, I don't consider a 'learning walk' to be a formal observation, five minutes is not long enough to make a 'requires improvement' judgement. If your SLT try to convince you that it was a formal observation ask them for some written feedback.

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