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Relay Races - How do you teach a lesson on it?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by loui87, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. loui87

    loui87 New commenter

    Exactly what the subject says - how do you teach relay races to primary children for 1 hour? Thanks in advance x
  2. slippeddisc

    slippeddisc New commenter

    I used to just do it in a really simple way. Teach the skill. Practice it in pairs at a walk. Practice it in small groups at a walk. Practice it in small groups at a jog. Then at a faster pace. Stop occasionly to show good skills or tackle wrong technique. Then have a race!
  3. slippeddisc

    slippeddisc New commenter

    You could also find an athletics clip online so they can see the professionals doing it.
  4. marlin

    marlin Star commenter

  5. greta444

    greta444 New commenter

    Have some fun by varying the action. Do hopping, running backwards, skipping etc. Also it encourages good teamwork if you tie two children's wrists with a skipping rope so they can run at their partner's pace. Don't let them run either side of a football post like I did!!
  6. I read the question and thought WHY?
    Why would you want to teach relay races? Which PE skill are you teaching?
  7. Surely it covers lots of things? How about, running skills, identifying what makes performance effective, using strategies and tactics, applying rules and conventions, taking part in challenges requiring precision and control?
    I show a video of the professionals, then explain rules and let them have a go in teams while getting them to look out for problems while they do it. After that, we reflect on wha\t we can do to improve (i.e. 'what went wrong?') then have another go etc etc.
  8. Which part of the Primary National Curriculum does it cover?
    Running skills? many other more effective activities
    What makes performance effective? are you really going to do that or just have lots of races?
    Strategies and tactics in relay races? - Surely the children are just going to run as fast as they can?
    Rules and conventions? What rules and conventions? Run up and down once then sit quietly?
    I may concede on your last point
    You show a video of the professionals? Wasnt the OP tallking about infants? surely you don't show the olympic relay as an example?

  10. For upper KS2 i may teach proper relay race - 4 x 400 or shuttle relay as in sports hall athletics discussing baton grip etc.
    what I cannot stand are those PE lessons with the title Basketball skills with 4 teams doing different skills relays as in bounce ball up and down pass on. Throw ball up and catch then return to team, roll it round your body and pass it on etc
    These lessons are poor as only a small number of children are working at any time - a good basketball lesson would have children having a ball each and working on skills rather than a relay pass it on type lesson.

  11. Not really sure what basketball skills have to do with relay, but perhaps you should take your concerns up with people who teach 'those PE lessons' then? My class are taught competitive athletics skills - and yes, I expect them to take on board how the professionals do it, and to do their best to emulate those skills.
    Nobody is ever 'sitting about' in my PE lessons. When we do relay races, the children are all involved competitively in racing for their team.
  12. So in a team of 4 the 2 sat down are competitively taking part?
  13. For Heaven's sake get a grip! It takes two minutes or so for the rest of their team to complete the circuit! For most of that two minutes, the other runners are avidly watching to see how their team-mates do (with the express purpose of telling me what they did well and what they need to do better next time - we are big on reflective learning!)
    You are splitting hairs because you have failed to justify your original point that teaching relay is a waste of time in primary school. If it's taught badly, then it will be pointless. In my school, it's taught well, the kids take part in athletics tournaments with other local primaries (and frequently win) and most importantly, the kids love it!
  14. Avidly watching! A great PE skill!
    In many prmary schools relays are used to teach PE badly! In your school you teach it well, maybe, but the other schools that you 'frequently' beat are obviously not teaching it well.

  15. I find it difficult to believe you've ever played for a team if you don't understand the notion of 'avidly watching' (and supporting) your team. I am also rather dismayed that you don't find the idea of reflecting on your own and others' performance a valuable skill. In my classroom (and on the sports field) reflection on performance and learning is valued above pretty much everything else.
    Maybe the other schools are really, really **** at teaching relay. No idea because I haven't seen them teach it and would never pass judgement on a teacher I haven't observed. Perhaps the OP was hoping to get some advice on how to teach relay better - hey, there's an idea! Maybe you could help her...
  16. I was a professional rugby player before I became a teacher! In most sports no one avidly watches.
    In most sports, most people avidly participate!
    My point was that in an hour if your teams are too large then a child participating in relay could end up watching more than participating!
    Maybe a relay could be used at the END of a sprint lesson rather than as the lesson focus itself. Do you really focus on the minutiae detail of baton handling that is in KS3 PE curriculum?
  17. Why are any children sitting down? Why do you get a team to sit down when they have finished? Even more so DURING a relay, why on earth would 2 children out of a team of 4 be sitting?
    As a professional rubgy player did all the team sit down if a try was scored?
    Sorry for the rant but it's a point that drives me mad!
  18. What do they do? Stand and watch?
    I don't do relays apart from maybe as a race at the end of a sprint lesson.
    I didnt say I get my children to sit down
    But I have seen so many poor lessons where teachers use relays frequently and the winning team is the group all sat in a nice row with legs and arms folded.
    In an hour relay lesson there will be a large proportion of the time where the children are not doing anything - so if they are not sitting - what are they doing? Do they stand and watch?
  19. Surely in an hour's sprint lesson the children are not going to be sprinting the whole time either? Think the previous poster (sorry can't remember your name!) made a valid point when referencing the various elements of the NC - not just skill acquisition, but also evaluating and improving performance as well as selecting and applying skills and tactics. There is value to be gained in allowing the children to explore the most effective way to 'handover' - with and without a baton, using a handover zone, analysing successful starts and body position - this can be done by exploring on a smaller scale before competing on a larger track if appropriate depending on age. Why the need to shoot down that point?! Yes the children should be actively involved in a PE lesson (as they should in any lesson!) but this doesn't mean they should be undergoing an hour's workout. The NC is broader than that whether we agree that it should be or not!
    As for using video clips of professional sportsmen - why not? I have used videos of Commonwelath gymnastics and Spellbound to inspire gymnastics sessions - doesn't mean I expect the children to acheive that standard in a lesson or even in a lifetime. Just as we use high level examples in English - we don't expect the children to become prolific poets and authors. Or did I miss your point there?
    However, I do agree with your point about frequent use of relays in other games lessons where the focus should be on refining techniques and skills - so much technique is lost in the haste to be first to be sat down exactly as you described.
    But am guessing the OP was referring to a lesson which focussed on relay races.

    OP - if that's the case, the answer to your question depends entirely on the age of the children you're teaching and what exactly you want the focus to be. It could be that this is linked to sports day preparation which is especially important to KS1 and SN children. If the children are expected to compete in medley races etc on sports day, they should be given adequate preparation in advance (it may be none, but again this is all age-appropriate). If the children are older and you do not feel comfortable with spending an hour on 'relay race' technique, could the children create their own races/tracks for younger children to try? A follow up session could be used where the younger children get to try out the relay races with the older children acting in a sports leader role. Hope that helps.

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