There are so many fun games to play for physical education, but sometimes you need to start with the fundamentals. The good news is the fundamentals can be fun too!
Physical education fundamentals will set students up for sports, games and other activities, so they are excellent for young children or the beginning of the year or unit.
Fundamentals include ways of movement—running, skipping, hopping, dodging—and other basic skills, such as catching, dribbling, passing, and throwing. Sometimes these things seem so obvious, we forget that kids need to learn and practice them. Once they get the fundamentals down, they’ll get additional practice in games that combine lots of skills, but you’ll also want some practice that focuses on these basic skills.
For any physical education fundamental, start by modeling the action. Demonstrate and describe what you do. Then give kids a chance to practice. And keep it fun.
Make physical education fundamentals fun
Mixed up motions—Review different movements, say sprinting, hopping, skipping. Have students start with any motion they like, moving around the gym, field or other defined area. When the whistle blows call out a motion and have them switch. This also gives practice in moving with body awareness and leaving appropriate space to other people.
Skip tag—This is played like a regular game of tag, but instead of running, students must skip. (You could also sub in a different movement here.) In the heat of the game, it’s not uncommon for students to slide into a run or almost-run. Anybody who isn’t skipping has to stop for a count of three to keep the skipping (or other motion) clean.
Counting catch—Students can work in pairs or small groups. One person throws underhand to the next. If the student catches it, they call out 1. They then throw the ball to their partner or the next person in their group. If that person catches it, they call out 2. Once the ball is dropped, counting starts at 1 again. See how high students can get. You can vary the difficulty by adjusting how far apart students stand. For added difficulty, get more than one ball going at a time. Try two balls of different sizes or colors. Students can call out 1 Red, 1 Blue or 1 Small, 1 Big as part of the count.
Those are just 3 games you can play to have fun with physical education fundamentals. I’ve put together a bundle of 35 lesson plans to help you keep physical education fun and easy.
The first set of lessons in the Physical Education Resource Kit covers these physical education fundamentals:
- Soccer pass
- Sprint run
- Overarm throw
The kit also includes 4–6 lesson plans for each of these areas: early morning fitness, modified sports, athletics, dance, gymnastics, and indoor games.
Each lesson is on its own card to make it easy to take your lessons with you, wherever you have your physical education time. Each card in the kit contains:
- Warm up ideas
- Skill practices
- Suitable year level/s