Student survey spurs changes in PE curriculum

The Watertown, NY,  physical education curriculum will change its emphasis from competitive sports to fitness and recreation this year.  Jamie Munks reported in the Watertown Daily Times that the school district surveyed students last year to get suggestions for improvements in the curriculum. “We’re adding more lifetime activities for students,” Watertown City School District Athletic Director Michael A. Lennox said.

Snowshoeing, table tennis and more cooperative games will be offered and officiating will be integrated into the physical education units. The swimming program will include basic rescue, kayaking, and aquatic fitness.

The surveys found that around 9 percent of students can’t swim or fear water. Some components will be added to address those problems and give students basic survival skills, Mr. Lennox said.

The Mighty Milers program will be expanded to all the elementary schools next year.

The program is online and gives students incentives to walk or run, even outside gym class. It’s a national program, with benchmarks such as 13 miles, 26 miles or more, and students are given awards in an assembly at the end.

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