The first part of the series of articles The Physical Education Hall of Shame lists childhood games which are considered inappropriate for physical education classes. The author argues that some games are potentially unsafe, have minimal participation time factors, they are potential to embarrass the student in front of their classmates, and focus on eliminating students from participation. One of the harmful games is Dodgeball. Even though the game involves teamwork, strategy, and motor skills, the game might be dangerous, and also includes the highly skilled students. Another game mentioned by Williams is Duck, Duck, Goose. It is a game of a minimal participation, where generally five students have “fun”, and where friends pick their friends, and sometimes other classmates just to see them fail. The author mentions a few more games, and they are: Giant, Elves, and Wizards, Kickball, Musical Chairs, Relay Races, and Steal the Bacon. All of these activities have a potential for embarrassment, ignore success, and focus on failures. I am positively surprised that the author talks about the problems certain games and activities may create, because very often teachers who are used to the games, simply cannot see the potential harm and danger, or they may just think that the games are fun (especially those teachers who used to win when they were students themselves). I think, it is PE educators’ responsibility to reflect on their teaching, create well-conceived lesson plans which eliminate the risk of being ridiculed and humiliated. With intelligent decisions and lesson plans, PE teachers will create equal opportunities for learning and participating in the game, as well as they will provide...
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... criticizes the practice of taking attendance while students sit in lines, viewing it as a waste of precious instructional time.
I have never heard about a Shirts vs. Skins teaching practice, and that surprises me the most. I can only imagine how humiliating this can be for students who are overweight or underweight, who have a low self-esteem, or who simply are ashamed of being half naked. I really wish all physical education teachers could realize how much harm some of the long-practiced activities can cause in the lives of their students. Therefore, they should strive to carefully select the activities and games, introduce modifications, and educate themselves in order to be more insightful and thoughtful practitioners. Only then, they will be able to instill positive attitudes in students’ lives and encourage them to become physically active in their adult life.
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