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National Curriculum

PE, personal development and Every Child Matters

Personal development is a vital part of the key stage 4 curriculum and PE has a distinctive contribution to make in this area. The PE programme of study provides opportunities to plan sequences of work, learning outcomes and teaching approaches that support personal development through the five Every Child Matters outcomes.

Enjoy and achieve

PE gives students the opportunity to participate and achieve in a range of activities as performers, officials and leaders. It provides a strong link to physical activities, sport and dance opportunities they take up in extra-curricular activities and in the community. It makes a significant contribution to young people’s entitlement to five hours of physical activity, including sport, each week.

Students enjoy being physically active as individuals, in groups and in teams. They also enjoy solving problems and performing in creative, artistic, aesthetic, competitive and challenging activities.

For some students achievement in physical education will be the pursuit of excellence and becoming ‘the best’ in their sport or chosen activity. Others may choose to use their knowledge, skills and understanding to pursue careers or voluntary pathways as performers, leaders or officials or follow physical education routes of study at further or higher education. Success for others will be in their involvement in physical activity for its own sake and for the benefits to their health and wellbeing.

Be healthy

PE gives students an understanding of the important role physical activity plays in a balanced, healthy life. By experiencing a range of activities and developing their skills, competence and confidence, students can make informed choices about how they want to get involved in physical activity both at school and in the community.

A high-quality PE programme helps students appreciate the positive effect physical activity can have on their overall feeling of wellbeing. They come to regard it as a vital ingredient in their lives and choose to be physically active on a daily basis. They learn that being active can have a positive impact on stress, anxiety and depression, can increase social opportunities and, when combined with a balanced diet, can lead to better maintenance of a healthy weight and a better overall feeling of wellbeing.

Stay safe

PE gives students the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to participate safely and effectively both as individuals and when working in groups and teams. They learn how to create safe environments and how to use safe working practices. This includes such things as wearing appropriate kit, warming up safely and effectively, lifting and carrying safely and ensuring that they and others are safe.

Students learn about the risks associated with different activities and how to mitigate those risks while still providing challenge and excitement. They learn how to be alert to changing risks and become safety conscious in all that they do without being fearful of attempting more challenging activities.

Achieve economic wellbeing

Through PE students learn how to work as individuals and collectively to achieve success. They learn to solve problems by devising plans and discussing, commenting on, reviewing, refining, repeating and carrying out these plans to completion. These are all vital skills that will help equip students for the world of work.

PE helps students understand that physical activity can stimulate their minds, give them a sense of wellbeing and have a positive impact on their lives. Knowing the importance of balancing the demands of a job with physical activity, leisure and social interaction is the key to achieving in the world of work while remaining mentally and physically fit.

Make a positive contribution

PE provides many opportunities for students to get involved positively in the life of the school and in the wider community. Students gain the confidence to develop their skills and specialisms outside school by joining local clubs. They may also do voluntary work at school and within the local community, assisting in clubs and other social settings.

PE provides opportunities for students to work collaboratively in a range of settings. They learn how to overcome difficulties, to appreciate their own and others’ strengths and weaknesses and to develop their understanding of fairness and personal and social responsibility.

Quick links

How physical education links to

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