Physical Education is provided for all students in AHSD25 starting in Kindergarten and continuing through their 8th grade year. The overall aim of Physical Education in AHSD25 is to develop students' fundamental movement skills within a variety of developmentally appropriate game, dance, and gymnastic activities. The program will also enhance students' personal fitness and provides them with the knowledge and skills necessary to engage in a variety of physical activities. The program also aims to develop students' personal and social responsibility, self-management skills, and problem solving-skills. The overall goal of this program is to enhance students' disposition toward leading a physically active lifestyle.
In addition to Physical Education, students also engage in Health education programming. 5th and 8th grade students learn about sexual health through programs lead by Robert Crown Center Health Specialists. In middle school, students engage in a Health class that focuses on nutrition, drug and alcohol awareness, personal and social responsibility, and self-management skills.
Illinois State Standards on Physical Development & Health outline learning in the following areas: movement skills; physical fitness; team-building; health promotion, prevention, and treatment; human body systems; and communications and decision-making. The Illinois Learning Standards for Physical Development and Health were developed using National Standards for Physical Education, National Health Education Standards, the 1985 State Goals for Physical Development and Health, and other states' standards and local outcomes from Illinois school districts.
All Kindergarten through 5th grade students experience Physical Education classes. Kindergarten students attend one 30 minute P.E. class each week. Students in grades 1-5 attend two 30 minute P.E. classes each week. All Elementary students (kindergarten through 5th grade) attend an Extended P.E. session on days that they do not have a P.E. class. Students participate in a variety of developmentally appropriate games and sports throughout the year with a focus on skill development, teamwork, and physical fitness. Elementary P.E. teachers also incorporate learning experiences to develop students’ understanding of nutrition, body systems, conflict resolution, and decision making.
Middle school students attend Physical Education classes every day in order to further develop their movement skills, teamwork, and physical fitness. During one quarter each year, middle school students join a Health class that incorporates physical activity but has a larger focus on nutrition, drug and alcohol awareness, personal and social responsibility, and self-management skills.
All P.E. classes in AHSD25 participate in the FitnessGram® assessment which measures health-related fitness for youth. The FitnessGram health-related fitness assessment offers multiple tests to measure aerobic capacity, muscular strength and endurance, and flexibility. The FitnessGram assessment provides a measure of good health as opposed to athletic ability. Students are assessed using the following test items:
- One-Mile Run (Grades 3-8)
- Push-Up (Grades 3-8)
- Curl-Up (Grades 3-8)
- Back-Saver Sit and Reach (Grades 3-8)
Note: Students in Kindergarten through 2nd grade may participate in these activities in order to practice the skills involved.
At all grade levels, AHSD25 staff are working to incorporate the recommendations of the Illinois Enhance Physical Education Task Force. The task force published recommendations to enhance physical education programs in elementary and secondary schools in the state of Illinois. Students in an enhanced physical education program: spend at least 50% of class time in moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA), focus on physical activity and achieving each student’s personal best, emphasize teamwork and cooperation, and utilize a broader wellness approach in order to develop lifelong skills for physical activity and nutrition.
Students in AHSD25 also engage in Health education programming provided by Robert Crown Center. These Health programs provide students with developmentally appropriate information regarding their sexual health. The Robert Crown Center website has links to more information on the various programs they offer, as well as additional parent resources. An overview of the programs taught by Robert Crown Center in AHSD25 schools are below.
In 5th grade, students participate in the Linda/Michael puberty program, Life Begins, and the Science Behind Drugs. The Science Behind Drugs and Prevention helps students make healthy choices to lead a drug-free life. Students will learn how drugs affect the body systems, especially the brain, which can lead to addiction. Students will also learn refusal skills to arm them with tools to help them make positive decisions regarding drug use. Linda is a unique, “girls only” program for puberty education. The program recognizes the significance of physical body changes that occur during puberty and encourages girls to maintain a healthy body image. Michael is a “boys only” puberty education program that will educate young boys on the physical body changes that occur during puberty. Showing respect for others and self-esteem are also emphasized. Life Begins teaches students about the functions of the reproductive system, which is one of the body systems studied in fifth grade. The program also includes the development of a fetus from conception to birth.
In 8th grade, students participate in a unit on Abstinence Education as a part of their Health class. This unit will be taught by their health teacher and will include a three-day presentation by an educator from the Robert Crown Center. The three-day presentation, titled Teen Sexual Health will cover the fundamentals of the male and female reproductive anatomy; the social, emotional, mental and physical development of adolescents; the negative consequences of risk taking behaviors; and emphasize abstinence being the safest and healthiest lifestyle choice.
Each year, a parent information night is hosted by the district for parents of 5th and 8th grade students to see all the materials that will be used during these programs. For more information, please contact the Fine Arts & Physical Education Coordinator.