Alright I am back from winter break and ready to get back to work. Today's blog post will not be something I have come up with on my own, but things I have learned about effective P.E. teachers. There are many characteristics that make up an effective P.E. teacher and most of them can be learned, practiced, and perfected. Whether you have these characteristics or strategies can make or break a good teacher. In previous blog articles I have discussed classroom management and this post can also be beneficial to keeping your classroom safe and under control
Some days I feel I need one of these!
Your tone is something that is very important when teaching, especially in a big gym. You have to be able to project your voice so that everyone in the gym can here you. This can be very easy when the gym is quiet, but what happens when you are calling down a student who may be a risk to others or just not falling directions. Your voice needs to be loud and clear, but not the point where the students think you are screaming at across the gym. My first year of teaching, students had trouble hearing me and I found myself repeating things over and over. I have since learned how to project from deep down in my chest so that my voice travels across the room without going home with a raspy throat from screaming all day. This takes practice and trial and error. You will have to play with your tone and may get that look of "why are you screaming at us" before you get the right tone. When you do figure out how to project your voice it will be a beneficial tool in your classroom management.
That may be a little too far with "the look"!
In my first semester of college, one of my Physical Education Professors, Dr. Stevie Chepko would give you this look when you were not doing what you were supposed to do be doing. She looked at you and you would feel like there was a hole burning through you. This was very effective because you knew you were in trouble when this happened and you wanted crawl under the table and hide. Later that semester she demonstrated using this look with Pre K students. She could control a class just by looking at them. At that point in my career I was amazed of the power of just a look could have on someone.
Classic "Look"... Could not leave this one out!
Your look should be one that says I see what you are doing or I am disappointed in what you just did. The key to "the look" is to create an appearance that when you look at your students they either wonder "what the did wrong?" or they know that they are guilty and have been caught. I have found that the best way to test this out is to find a student that is not doing anything wrong and give them your "look" and if they look confused or approach you to see what they did wrong then "the look" is doing its job. Now be careful looks are a powerful thing. You want the students to know your disappointed, but not to the point where they are scared to the point of crying. (I apologize to my past kindergarten classes while trying to perfect my "look").
Yeah... They are laughing at you back there.
Do you have that sense of having eyes in the back of your head? If you do not then you are missing out on a lot that is going on in your class. In my gym I try to always position myself where I can see the whole class. This is not possible all the times and are times that there are some students to your rear or side. This is the time when you need to have this sense. Now of course no one actually has eyes in the back of their head unless you are not going to wear one of those bicycle mirrors on your head, but there are other ways of knowing what is going on behind you. Listen to your class, when you are working one on one with a student keep your ears open for any thing that may sound odd. You can also keep your eyes on the students in front you as they will react to what other students may be doing behind you. Lastly some people just have that sense of feel that something is not right. You know if you have it and if you don't you will have to really use your other senses to help you out during these situations.