"How many of you have ever ridden on a skateboard or Longboard before?" I asked my class of 25. Two students rose their hands. Many of the students looked at me like I was crazy when I told them that they would all have the ability to ride a Longboard by the end of the unit. Day one was an introduction day with demonstrations on what riding a Longboard looks like with the help of my colleague, Kyle McManus. The two of us stressed the importance of safety and covered the basics needed to become a knowledgeable skater. By day 3 we had covered safety rolls, Spooner Boards, riding positions, and balancing on the boards. By lesson 4 the students were able to use paddle boards and hear an introduction to the kick push and turn. By day 5, the last day of the unit, the students were riding without a partner, excelling their own speed, turning and stopping using all of the skills taught throughout the unit. I am extremely proud of my class that never could ride on a board and can now ride as competent skaters. It just goes to show that even the craziest of ideas may be the best ones.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Monday, February 13, 2012
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
As I look at the life sized schedule on my wall for this summer I realized that summers are not at all what they used to be. I remember just a few years ago being able to look at the months of June, July and August only to have the days coated in two words: SUMMER VACATION. I think to myself, what did I ever do in those three months? I remember being outside all of the time and playing games with my friends. I went to lacrosse and wrestling camps during the week days and traveled on the weekends here and there with my lacrosse team for tournaments. I would go to a camp on a lake and just relax. "Those were the days." Now my summer agenda has warped from tiny empty calendar boxes into boxes the size of my hand and filled to the brim with color coated lists of important "to-do's" and deadlines. I am busy every day of what used to be three long relaxing months and I bring it upon to myself. But like many people, I like the challenge and the feeling of being productive and accomplished.
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Last week (May 1-7) was Let's Move in School week. The organization "Let's Move in School" has a mission to improve every students health and academic performance in every school across the nation. Let's Move in School " ensures that every school provides a comprehensive school physical activity program with quality physical education as the foundation so that youth will develop the knowledge, skills, and confidence to be physically active for a lifetime" (http://www.aahperd.org/letsmoveinschool/). Over 4,000 schools adding up to more than 3 million students had signed up for the Let's Move in School event. Through out the nation there were countless students, physical educators, parents, teachers, school administrators and faculty that participated in the movement all in the same week. Not only was the organization "Let's Move in School" promoting an active climate, so was First Lady, Michelle Obama and singer/song writer Beyonce Knowles.
In this wave of movement was a popular "flash dance" that united students and educators alike to participate and be active. There are many versions out there but there is nothing like the original Beyonce had filmed. She took a visit to Harlem, New York City to surprise a school in part of Michelle Obama's "Let's Move" initiative to fight childhood obesity. Beyonce and the students danced to her "Move Your Body" hit that she recorded as an exercise video that was distributed to the public and the schools participating in the Let's Move in School week.
Here is the video of Beyonce dancing with the students from Harlem, NYC:
Here is the actual music video of "Move Your Body":
Not only did Beyonce get out there and participate in the event but First Lady, Michelle Obama participated as well.
There's no doubting with a movement like this that SUNY Cortland Physical Education wouldn't get involved. It was a no-brainer that we had to be a part of this great fight against childhood obesity and improvement of academics through physical movement. With the help of Professor Yang and many of the SUNY Cortland students and aspiring physical educators we made a flash dance video of Beyonce's, "Move Your Body" in our very own Park Center (physical education building on campus). Enjoy!
This month is Physical Fitness and Sport month so get out and be active with your friends, family and classmates! "National Physical Fitness and Sports Month shines a spotlight on the important role physical activity plays in our Nation's health and wellness. Participation in sports can strengthen both body and mind, and all kinds of active pastimes can help improve physical and mental well being. During this month, we rededicate ourselves to educating, engaging and empowering Americans of all backgrounds and abilities to live a healthy lifestyle" [FavStocks Reference]
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
The Freebord is a specialized skateboard that acts as a snowboard. One distinguishing feature of this Freebord is its six wheels. Four of the six are conventional wheels and the other two are located more toward the middle of the board acting as the central wheels which rotate in unlimited directions. By putting pressure on the edge of the wheel the boarder can maintain control of the board. The center wheels mimic the deck of the snowboard as the four outter wheels act as the steel edges allowing the rider to slow to a hault or cut a sharp edge to make a turn. The rider also has each foot in a binding to give more freedom to ride faster and to allow for more tricks or jumps to be executed.
Freebording isn't just a recreational activity although it can certainly be a recreatinal activity for everyone and anyone. There is a pro team called CHoE. This team travels around the nation together sharing their love and passion for the thrill of the ride. These 'adrenaline junkies' are filming themselves as they succeed in heart stopping rides with fanatical tricks. These pro Freeborders include Arnaud de Bluze (Vars, France), Nico Gaillard (Lyon, France), Laurent Brondel (Lyon, France), Mike Hoppe (Oakland, CA), Corey Lucero (Ellicott City), Tom Macfarlane (Perth, Australia) , Justin Oliver (Radford VA) and Richie Verost (Hamburg, NJ). All of these boarders are to end up in San Fransisco later this year to ride together. San Fransisco happens to be the favorite place to skate for many of the riders.
A member of the pro team from Perth, Australia, Sam Trowbridge passed away on April 21, 2011 from a Freebord accident that occurd the 20th late in the afternoon. He was riding without a helmet and caught a heel edge where he was immediately knocked unconscious and later the next day pronounced (brain) dead at the hospital in Auckland, New Zealand. His riding abilities, video editing skills as well as passion for the sport was spread throughout the world and admired by all.
It is important to recognize that reguardless of your age you are prone to serious injuries, Freebording is a dangerous sport to partake in and should be attempted at caution and with the proper safety equiptment. Never let your fears keep you from trying something new. Life is meant to be explored. Develop a new skill you never knew you had. If you like what you see, do what these guys did and order a Freebord designed to your own needs. Don't forget the helmet! You can find one your own size and at various designs and colors through the following longboard website:
Do you Freebord?
Visit the Freebord Official Page to learn more!
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
To engage all of these different learners that could be in your classroom, Dr. Trunfio has developed something he calls the Laugh First Project. In this project he has created the acronym GOTCHA. GOTCHA stands for, Games, Openness, Tickets, Chaos, Humor and Abracadabra.
- GAMES: Dr. Trunfio encourages to present the students with a challenge, game or (as a physical educator would put it), an instant activity to get your students roped into your lesson and engaged in what is going on in your classroom. During the session Dr. Trunfio had a few volunteers stand in the front of class to create a balloon animal following his instructions.
- OPENNESS: Being open with your students and sharing your stories allows for them to see that you are human, just as they are. It brings you all to the same level and allows for your students to open up to you. Dr. Trunfio shared his embarrassing story of waking up late for a final exam on SUNY Cortland's campus and running to the classroom only to then realize he was taking the test in his underwear and coat. The idea of waking up late and having to get from the dorms to a classroom at SUNY Cortland was something we could all connect with at one point in time.
- TICKETS: As soon as we walked into the classroom Dr. Trunfio was there to present to each of us a raffle ticket. My immediate thought was that we were all going to win a prize. This is what Dr. Trunfio wanted us all to think. He later told us that the tickets were to hold our attention and to keep us in the session until the end because we all expected to win a prize. He then told us we were not going to win anything but then gave away a t-shirt to one winner.
- CHAOS: Movement is important for focus of your students. Dr. Trunfio was everywhere. He utilized every square inch of his floor/stage. He walked and ran up aisles as he was talking to us, reaching out to everyone in the class. It was hard for him to not put himself in the proximity of the students. He also created chaos in the room with his vioce being loud and upbeat. He was energized and used multiple props as if he were a clown in a circus. He eventually was wearing a rainbow curly wig holding juggling batons with a giant red ball for a nose.
- HUMOR: The element of humor sets a curved line strait and is the shortest distance between two people. Humor was something that was always being incorporated throught his session. He told stories of what he has done in his past to create humor. One of which was how he has used caution tape on the door to see the students become confused and wonder how to get into the classroom. Eventually they figure it out but seeing their faces when they see you inside and the door taped off will instantly create humor for you as well as them. Another way Dr. Trunfio brought humor into the room was when he stood in front of the class with his juggling baton and told everyone that they had to stand up and applaud and yell as loud as they could and the louder everyone yelled, the higher he would juggle the batons. We all stood up and applauded and yelled as he threw one baton halfway in the air and let it fall. We all became silent as he confessed he didn't know how to juggle. He just wanted a standing ovation instead. He explained that laughing is all a chain reaction. As an edutainor, you only have to make a small handfull of your class laugh because when one person laughs, the person next to them usually laughs and so on. Laughter is contageous.
- ABRACADABRA: Every time you step in front of your students you have the chance to create magic and not a minute of time should be wasted because when your having fun time flys. There is no reason why humor can't be implemented into each unit or lesson you teach. Dr. Trunfio demonstrated how laughter is a chain reaction by having 4 students lay on their backs with thewir heads on each other's stomachs as one laughed until they were all laughing uncontrolably. He then paused and told us how time flys when your having fun. As he pointed to the clock I realized that we had just finished sitting through his 60 minute session. He had fit everything that he wanted to say in only 60 minutes but so much had happened in that time and there wasnt a minute I wasn't paying attention or a thing that I didn't remember when I left the classroom.
Dr. Trunfio had utilized every minute that he had with us. He roped us in From the first minute and didn't stop edutaining until the 60 minutes was up. Educating through entertainment is something that I believe every educator should be doing. Given, there is a sense of professionalism and seriousness in educating but there are ways to make in memorable and fun for your students. To be a teacher that your students will always remember and to haave them rememebr all of what you taught you must capture and hold their attention. How will you bring your classroom to life? Dr. Trunfio brought his classroom to life through GOTCHA.. It is every educators job to bring their classroom to life. What are you waiting for? Start creating magic in your classroom today!
*Visit Dr Trunfio's website:
Saturday, April 9, 2011
This week's season premier was an eye opener and really demonstrated many different styles of dance. For instance, the group I Am Me is a crew that is all about visualization and imagery. They use creativity from every day life and incorporate it into dance. One of their goals is to show America how they can take objects from every day life and turn them into a physical movement. This crew is one of a kind and absolutely a team to keep your eye on. But with so much talent this season, you may find it difficult to choose your favorite crew. Choose quickly because each episode a crew is voted off of the show to narrow the contestents down until America find's their favorite crew of the Season of the Superstars.
Stay tuned to MTV to see more of ABDC!