Category Archives: Lesson/Session Ideas

Drills and Activities for use in PE Lessons & Training Sessions

iPads/iPods in PE – Practical Workflow with Edmodo

Yesterday I participated in EdmodoCon 2012 (Edmodo’s annual conference). The online conference had a large number of sessions spread over a full day from a number of contributors. I dipped in and out of the conference all day but a session on using Edmodo and iPads in the classroom from Jason Buck (@jasonhbuck), Matt Tobin (@mattytobin) and Matt Spears (@matthewIspears) really got me thinking how powerful combining Edmodo with the iPad or iPod touch could be within PE. In this blog post I’ll give my current thoughts and a workflow idea I’m looking to implement in the new term.

Edmodo can be thought of as a social media interface specifically devised for education. Teachers can create groups for classes, set assignments, upload quizzes, polls and a wide variety of files for students to access. Students can sign up and join groups (once they have a joining code) and participate in the tasks or discussions on going. These tools alone have large scope within PE, especially for examination classes.

The features which excited me yesterday however were to do with the iPad/iPod touch app. The mobile nature of these devices make them ideal for use in PE. The camera feature in combination with apps such as CoachsEye allow students to capture and analyse footage instantly providing meaningful feedback with video evidence. This not only helps students develop their physical skills but also wider skills such as communication & technological.

Much of my previous uses of iPads in PE have involved using the camera feature with @CoachsEye on a lesson by lesson basis. Transferring footage from the devices to a central base for students to access at anytime, anywhere for future evidence or further work has been an issue. Edmodo has now become a solution to this. Once students have captured their footage and done their analysis on @CoachsEye they can export it to the devices photo roll and then upload it to their Edmodo library via the Edmodo app. This can allow a portfolio of evidence to be gathered or further work to be undertaken on the video.

Workflow (for ipod touch)

1. Capture footage using just the camera or @CoachsEye app.

2. Export footage to device’s photo roll

3. Open Edmodo app

4. Click Library icon

5. Click add icon (top right corner) to open the add screen. From here click album to open your photo roll. Alternatively you could open the camera and capturestraight into edmodo.

6. Video/Photo is now in the students library and exported from the device.

7. You should ensure students delete any footage no longer required from the device to save space, and also that they sign out of their edmodo accounts as they will remain logged in.

If students are using iPads they will be able to write a post and attach their video so all the group (created by teacher) can see. This can also be done from a laptop or PC.

One idea I had for using this workflow was with my GCSE PE group during the fitness testing unit. I plan to get students to create video protocols for each test (a how to… video for agility, power tests…). Once completed these could be uploaded to their Edmodo and shared. Once shared groups can assess other groups videos ensuring they have the correct protocols.

I think the combination of Edmodo and the iPad/iPod touch can be invaluable for PE. It can allow students to capture, analyse and export work anywhere and at anytime.

I’d love to hear if anyone else is using or planning to use this set up or something similar. Comments welcome…


Audiboo for GCSE & A Level PE

Just a quick post on my recent use of Audiboo. I’ve been looking for a tool which would allow me to create short & sharp podcasts for students to listen to as a quick revision of certain topics. Audiboo has been perfect for this. It’s quick and easy to use iphone app allows you to post within a couple of clicks. It’s perfect for creating & posting “on the go!” You can also post using the Audioboo website on your computer.

I signed in using my department twitter account meaning no extra usernames and passwords are required. Also linking the audioboo account to twitter also means that when a “boo” is created you can automatically post it to twitter. As our twitter account is linked to our facebook page it will appear here too, maximising the number of students it reaches. Initial feedback from students has been positive, many stating it is an easy quick recap on topics covered.

One downside is that a free account only allows 3 minutes of recording per clip and for any more recording time you have to sign up for a pro account which costs £60 per year.

I’ve introduced it to other department members and if they wish to use it I aim to link them to the department account meaning enabling a large resource base to develop on a range of topics. In coming weeks I aim to use it in combination with our class set of ipod touch’s and get students to create their own recap of lessons as a plenary. Other students could then listen to the posts and discuss whether the major points have been covered.

We’ll see how it goes!




What’s your REACTION with the iPod Touch?

The iPod touch has become an invaluable tool for use within Physical Education. The camera has many uses and combining it with the Sportscam app allows for detailed performance analysis. One idea I’ve recently used is to use the app to measure reaction times when delivering the topic to my Year 12 A/S PE students.

I used the app to help students learn basic definitions for reaction time, movement time & response time. I got them to film each other sprinting in reaction to a clap stimulus. By filming the clap in the background, students were then able to measure reaction time by calculating the time from onset of stimulus (hands of clap together) to the initiation of movement (student pushing against the floor). The app allows footage to be played in slow motion and frame by frame (see buttons in screenshot below).

After this I introduced a new activity where there were 4 stimulus and 4 possible responses. On various hand signals the student had to sprint in a certain direction. Reaction time was again calculated and recorded. The results revealed that increasing the number of stimulus-response alternatives increased reaction time. Reasons why were discussed and Hick’s Law introduced. Anomalies were also discussed. Most were caused by anticipation of the stimulus which is also part of the syllabus and thus further enhanced student learning.

I felt teaching the topic through practical using the technology available made it more engaging for the students whilst also allowing them to experience the topics being discussed. One drawback was the fact that the app only allows time gaps of 0.03 secs to be measured so accuracy of timing is limited, however for the purpose of introducing reaction time and explaining Hick’s law it did suffice.

Using Video Analysis Software to measure Flexibility

When teaching flexibility at A Level (post 16), I decided to use the video analysis software package Sportscode Gamebreaker to measure flexibility at certain joints. Using the built in isight camera on the Macbooks students measured joint angles using the measuring angles feature on the software.

We then discussed individual differences in range of motion at the hip and shoulder to learn the variety of factors which affect flexibility. This provided an excellent way for students to learn about how to measure flexibility using Goniometry, with the latest technology.

Agility Sessions for Pre-season Football

With the new season approaching and pre-season training underway I’ve found myself going through sessions in my head whilst running! Having taken part in many sessions-some so un-specific to football I’m left wondering what is the point?! This has led me to devise an agility session which I think is as specific as they come (in relation to developing agility/agility endurance for football).

Here’s the  Agility_session I came up with for personal use during pre-season. It involves an initial set-up of cones and allows for many modifications when training. I aimed to make the session as specific as possible to football by including a variety of changes of direction. I also modify sets, reps and recovery periods to develop different components of fitness. For pure agility/speed/acceleration I allow greater recovery time and work at maximal. I also use it to work my muscular endurance/agility endurance and lactic acid energy system by working for longer, resting for less etc.

I also aim to integrate the session into my teaching with my GCSE students when delivering the “principles of training” (Specificity, Progression, Overload, Reversibility, Tedium). I plan on letting them try the session, modify it to make it more specific to their sport, then as homework comment on a wallwisher wall relating the principles of training to the session.

As always I welcome any comments.

Blogs in A Level PE (Week 1 Reflection)

A week in and my A Level students are beginning to develop their use of their new blogs. I’ve set them an initial performance analysis task and most have completed part one of the task-team/individual sports analysis. With the World Cup going on, many have enjoyed this task. Although some of the analysis is not as thorough as it could be-most have made a good start. I have initiated some discussion on some blogs and am trying to encourage them to comment and discuss on each others work. This is very much in its infancy however is something that will be important if these blogs are going to have a large impact on learning. A major aim of the blogs is to get pupils reflecting on work we are covering in class and comment and discussion is central to this. I also aim to post questions on my blog and get students to post questions on theirs. Students will then have to answer via comment.

One area that has become apparent is the wide range of ICT skills within the class. This has become clear as those with sound skills were able to learn how to work the dashboard quickly meaning they were able to post work straight away. Others have found it more difficult and have yet to post work online. In an initial attempt to solve this I am aiming to pair students off so stronger students can ‘coach’ those who feel less confident using the tools. I am also encouraging students to develop their own skills by solving their problems themselves through researching online.

With 1 week gone 9/16 students have kicked off their blogs by organising links, posting work and commenting on others work. The others have played with themes but are yet to post their first work. Only 2 students have joined discussion by commenting on blogs.

I have also had initial training sessions with 2 members of my department who were very enthusiastic about the use of blogs. It’s great to have a department interest in their uses. Students are continually being reminded about their blogs and can access material from different staff. Next week staff will be allocated a group of student blogs to monitor-cutting the workload and providing more time for staff to initiate discussion with groups of students.

Next week I’m introducing the use video cameras & editing via Windows Moviemaker for part 2 of their performance analysis task. Here they have to create video skill analysis from their chosen sport. The plan is to post videos on our school youtube page and they can then embed videos into their blogs.

You can access all student and staff blogs by clicking here

Athletics Multi Event Team Competition Lesson Plan

Coming to the end of my athletics unit of work I was looking to integrate some competition into my final lessons. With some research and thinking, I came up with the attached lesson plan. It worked well-all pupils had clear and realistic targets to aim for which maintained their motivation throughout. Peer encouragement and advice was seen throughout. Importantly, pupils were able to put the skills they had learned throughout the unit of work to test in a competitive environment which was safe and secure for all abilities. See what you think, try it. Feedback welcomed

Athletics Multi Event Team Competition Lesson Plan & Resources