Our education bureau is developing modules on PE lessons for teachers to learn to teach PE. I think this is a great idea. Simple and effective in terms of in-service teacher training. I actually benefited it a lot when I first started in 2017. Attending the second time this year, it feels that the model is more clear and easier to execute for novice PE teachers. Having the opportunity to learn from the experienced and the best is a blessing.
The model is GBODY. I don’t know where they got this acronym but it’s easy to remember.
G stands for warm up and preparation.
B stands for skills building.
O refers to communication and modification with the students.
D means differentiation.
Y is the final wrap up and cleaning up.
Easy to remember now, but it took me a long time to figure out the teaching process in 2017.
For lower graders, the lessons were contextualized with their world experience, such as animals imitation and road safety. I think the idea of road safety is fun to play with. Kids love the game of 紅綠燈 - red light and green light. For CLIL lessons, it’s also easier to develop chants and interaction when introducing this idea. Here is an example.
Red light, stop.
Green light, go.
Yellow, yellow, keep an eye out.
The lesson can then incorporate various animal walks and skips. Here is a screenshot of the differentiated stage (D) of GBODY.
The same process can also be used to teach gymnastic rolling, like how the panda rolls in the video clip.
Teaching lower grade PE is just too much fun!
A colleague told me she started taking online English lessons to brush up her English skills. Kinda interesting and I signed up one. For one, I want to see how experienced teachers conduct a language class with a small group of people. I also want to practice the language on topics I am not that familiar with.
The first lesson was great. The teacher divided the time into two sessions: 1) conversation-how to really take turns to build the content on others’ response 2) discussion-read aloud a short paragraph, explain the vocabulary, trouble-shoot and share ideas.
I truly enjoyed the first part! Gosh! Having a proper conversation without asking questions is so hard for me! It really takes practice. And studying the vocabulary words, ChatGPT really comes in handy. Some of the words are difficult to grasp without enough contexts. I asked ChatGPT to give me 10 sentences for each words.
Solid and well-rounded.
On a side-note, I scheduled the lesson at noon time, for 80 minutes. It was very refreshing and better than a nap, at least for me.
Elina is a great art teacher from Finland. Her demo teaching blew my mind.
We met through a Fulbright exchange program where she represented distinguished educators from Finland. Needless to say, it sparked a lot of curiosities in me and also teachers from other countries. I had the privilege to be placed in the same group with her, learning her teaching philosophy and saw her teach first hand.
Long story short, after long discussion and observing her lessons, I found that self-paced learning is deeply ingrained in her teaching beliefs, or perhaps in her beliefs in general. How human beings learn or acquire knowledge throughout one’s life is different and therefore our teaching shall reflect that nature. That, is manifested in this teacher’s every move in the classroom, her words and design of the lesson.
In her first 2nd grade sewing class (2nd grade? Sewing? That’s right!), she introduced the learning time line. Each student in the beginning of each lesson set the pace of learning for themselves. They decided when and what they would complete a certain step.
There was no competition but evaluation and discussion of their each decision between the teacher and students - no compliments; no punishment, just a sense of “of course everyone can do it!”
Of course everyone can succeed. It is just a matter of time. Why rush?
I have always wondered how a class that requires intensive interactions and readings of non-verbal cues can work online with little kids. Can it really work? To what extent?
I believe in real human interaction in the K-2 classrooms, where our children learn to respect and cherish one another through their deeds. To me, it’s like a little society they get to experience and experiment the consequences of their own actions. Through discussion, if the teacher is willing, they will bond and acquire a sense of life that they wish when they grow up.
Since the breakout of pandemic, our children and teachers can only interact online through a small window and are refrained from physical engagement. Amongst the teachers, we sometimes jokingly said that our kids absorb everything happening in the class through their skin, not eyes not ears, just like fish in the water. Now that the kids are in a different context, How learning takes place is indeed an interesting phenomenon. Is it still the same kind of learning?
I’m sure there are children truly excited about using “computers” or “tablets,” but I am not sure how the quality of online interactions serves the purpose of learning social skills such as eye-contact, showing physical support with non-verbals or active listening.
Online class/communication, to me, perhaps requires a different set of social rules or etiquette.
It’s easy to get fatigued sometimes in our teaching when our brains went totally dry and can’t come up with any ideas to boost the learning energy in the classroom.
Here are some quick go activities I collected through colleagues or online resources. It is always great to come back for a revisit now and then.
*The first* article is from infromED in 2013. It offers 25 tricks to jumpstart routine lessons. They are divided into subjects: Math, Reading, Writing, Science, Social Studies, and offered when a specific skill or skill is targeted at. The ideas are very practical and easy to implement given that our ESL/EFL curriculum integrates many of those subjects. My favorites are
These ideas are all simple and practical. I always feel pumped again when I come back to revisit these ideas.
*The second* article is written by teachtought in 2018, specifically addresses the necessity to get students moving in the classroom and it offered 5 activities to be incorporated in any lessons. Simple and easy to prepare.
Although the authors stated that their activities are used with high school students I found them also useful in the elementary classrooms when I implemented then with more control of questions I asked and more practice on the routines/discussion on the goals with the children.
An enthusiastic ELT/CLIL teacher, passionate educator, researcher, teacher trainer, Apple Teacher. Seesaw ambassador and curriculum developer.