Tuesday, May 24, 2005

"I guess we'll pick her."

Physical Education in schools is the subject of this Nashville City Paper editorial from 5/23/05.

"Right now, Metro schools require two days of physical education a week for grades K-4. P.E. is an elective in middle school. In high school, students are required to take one year of P.E. and one year of lifetime wellness."

"The value of physical education classes is they not only teach athletics, but they teach a healthy lifestyle that students can then take into adulthood."
From my point of view PE taught many of us that our self-esteen was going to take a severe hit when it was time to choose up sides, that your otherwise impressive GPA suffers when you aren't able to do 20 laps of the pool or create a modern dance that looks half-way graceful and that the wait in line to get your turn at bat only interrupted your ongoing gossip about whatever clique you weren't in.

In my opinion, there needs to be plenty of wiggle and "outdoor voice" time in elementary schools, every day, a couple of times a day. No young child I've ever met was hardwired to sit quietly in one place for very long. Later on the emphasis should beless on learning a new sport and more on finding the physical activity that the child likes that will lead to maintenance of life-long fitness. Maybe if we retrofit treadmills and stationary bikes with PS2 controllers or book racks we'd make some progress. Wouldn't some love to get that equipment contract! Of course, bringing back neighborhood schools and providing safe sidewalks that children can utilize on their walk to school might work too.

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