Let’s Get Physical!
As I enter the end of my pregnancy, I am finding that moving around is slightly more challenging than it used to be. Yes, I get winded going up and down the stairs. Yes, I can feel my heart pound as I saunter at what I previously would have considered a leisurely pace on the treadmill. And yes, I find all things dessert highly attractive. So although I’m told that I “look great for being SO PREGNANT” (Still not sure what this means when people say it but am choosing to take it as a compliment…) I definitely don’t feel like my old self. Which is fine. Because, YOU KNOW IT’S TRUE, I still am able to put on my high heels from time to time and strut my stuff. (If only to keep my irrational vow to walk into the maternity ward wearing heels. I know it’s not sane or normal, but it’s principle, people.)
Basically, I am feeling as if my mind is the only thing that is physically fit these days and even that is a slippery slope (read: I can’t remember shit). So you’ll understand when I paid special attention to this I post today about the Fitness Integrated with Teaching (FIT) Kids Act over at Ed Week. I fondly recalled picking my friends up from gym…my formerly slender self that is. And then I thought to myself…wait a minute! If schools are going to be required to adhere to and post all kinds of physical fitness standards, I know at least a few places that are screwed with a capital S.
First of all, the idea that schools are going to have to spend more time recording, posting and publicizing instead of teaching, engaging with children and motivating does seem…well, like bullshit. I mean, we just had Earth Day, people, think of the trees if nothing else!
Second of all, while I am one hundred percent behind the idea that children need to be more active, as well as more food saavy, is it wrong that I am smelling one more thing to be placed upon the teacher’s overly full plate? Are teachers now going to be required to basically moonlight as nutritionists and add a healthy eating curriculum to the mix? AGAIN, I have NO PROBLEM with teaching healthy eating in schools, but, excuse me if I think this may be one more buck that is passed.
At my former school, we had a ROCK STAR nutrition person who made up fabulous programs, worked with parents to encourage healthy eating at home and hooked us up with a legit farmer’s market. Totally amazing. Yet also, I’m afraid, not common across public schools. We were lucky.
Sadly, I think in this climate of rampant finger pointing and teaching bashing, I have a feeling this Super Colleague’s fabulousness will be overlooked when the Powers That Be see an opportunity to place blame instead of praise. Because, my friends, not everyone involved in the physical education of my little cherubs was quite so on the ball.
Before I tell this next story, let me first provide you with the following disclaimer: I am related to and have a great respect for excellent physical education teachers. I mean, the idea of having a whistle at all times is tempting, but honestly, I so could not do that job. HOWEVER, I have also seen the other side of the coin, meaning physical education teachers who are, shall we say, less than physical.
I think picking up your class from gym only to see the physical education teacher quietly balancing her checkbook in the corner, and perhaps paying a few bills, might be a problem under this new legislation. (TRUE STORY. ) Or maybe reading the newspaper so that it completely obscures your view of the 60 children running around like crazy people with no obvious task. That could pose a problem under this new bill as well. I’m also thinking that having your students report back that they never play games in gym because they are banned for life is a wee bit of an educational snafu. I’m all for consequences when children misbehave but banning a child for life? Tempting but probably not the best decision ever made. Or the most legal or ethical one either.
I can picture it now: PE Standard 1A – Children shall entertain themselves, sustaining a minimum of five injuries per year, while instructor completes personal business.
If that’s somewhere in this latest bill, can I just say NAILED IT!