Being physically literate is a fundamental and valuable means to maximizing a person’s potential to succeed in all aspects of life. Physical literacy is one of the most controllable factors of a person’s overall well-being. It is a critical skill that empowers students to become successful and productive members of society. The physically literate student will demonstrate mastery of the following:
● Competence and confidence in motor skill and movement patterns
● Application of health-related fitness concepts, principles, strategies and tactics
● Maintenance of physical fitness or progress towards physical fitness through participation
● Responsible personal and social skills in individual and teamwork tasks
● The value and desire to engage in physical activity as a lifestyle
A physically literate person needs to be healthy in both mind and body. Developing this lifestyle positively contributes to a person’s overall physical, social, and emotional health. Acquiring the skills of a physically literate person is a valuable, lifelong skill that is needed to improve self-esteem and confidence, teamwork skills, and readiness to learn in all content areas.
We must provide all students with multiple opportunities to regularly and consistently access equitable and culturally relevant Physical Education classes. It is imperative that students receive instruction from highly qualified, licensed Physical Education teachers. It takes a combination of methods, materials, and classroom spaces for students to achieve proficiency on learning targets. In order to successfully reach all students, it is crucial for teachers to have access to safe and age appropriate equipment as well as and current and relevant technology. Teachers must have opportunities to access ongoing professional development designed to deepen content knowledge and improve cultural competency. Appropriate accommodations, modifications, adaptations, and support for all learners are also required in order to create a fully inclusive classroom environment. It is vital for facilities to be safe and specifically dedicated and designed for Physical Education classes, to execute the curriculum, meet Learning Targets and move effectively in the space. These courses should be rigorous and required for all students without waivers or exemptions.
To provide an effective physical education program, SHAPE (Society of Health and Physical Educators) America recommends that elementary students should receive a minimum of 150 minutes per week of Physical Education while middle and high school students should receive a minimum of 225 minutes of Physical Education per week. With that time, Physical Educators envision students moving competently and confidently, demonstrating a wide variety of motor and manipulative skills. They will apply knowledge of a physically active lifestyle as well as concepts and strategies related to movement and performance. Students will have multiple opportunities to work collaboratively in activities with others representing diverse backgrounds, experiences, and abilities. They are developing joy for movement while experiencing the feelings associated with overcoming challenges to achieve individual, team and group success.
To achieve this vision and best support physical education teachers, structures within all schools, kindergarten through 12th grade, will be inclusive to support adequate physical education and skill development for all students in accordance with state law. Appropriate accommodations, modifications, adaptations, and support for all learners are also required in order to create a fully inclusive classroom environment.
Ultimately, physical literacy is achieved through an evolving partnership of all stakeholders: students, families, teachers, administrators, schools, and communities. The task of the Beaverton School District is to create an equitable Physical Education environment in which all students are valued for their diversity, fostered in their wellness development, challenged, and motivated to continue learning and leading a physically healthy lifestyle through their lifetime.