Practicing the art of giving quality feedback in Athletics
Over the past few classes my students from grades two to five have been working on breaking down sprinting technique into micro-components. The challenge is getting them to understand proper sprinting technique but to do so in a kid-friendly way that isn't overly pedantic or draining to them.
I've been working on getting them to be able to break down technique in a fun way that was done in chunks rather than throwing everything at them at once. I created the visual you see to the left, based on student voice. What you see in the visual is straight from them, I just collected their answers and created the visual in a way that shows both do's and do nots when it comes to sprinting technique. Now that we have concluded this phase of Athletics, it was time to put what they know into active practice, so I posted the visual for my grade 2 students to check out when they came into PE today.
However, before elaborating on how I was going to get my students to put what they know into prctice, I want to share with you a great video that I used early on in the unit to help the students begin to break down the sprinting technique. I used this video last year as well in the Athletics unit and re-visited it again this year. Check out the 1-minute video of Usain Bolt below. We dug deep into this video in the second class of our Athletics unit.
The Main Aims of Today's Grade 2 PE Experience
When the students came into class today, we checked out and discussed the visual of good sprinting technique. This took about 5 minutes to go over with my students but it was imperative to do so as the main aim of the class was to partner them up with grade 8 students who were going to be running the 400 meters in their PE class.
Together with the grade 8 PE class, we went out to the track . The grade 2 students were specifically instructed to watch their grade 8 partner run the 400 meters and to provide quality, specific, and meaningful feedback once they finished the run. My students know that simply saying things like, "You were really fast" or " It looked like your technique was good" is NOT GOOD ENOUGH. They were told that they must be specific and tell their grade 8 partner things that they may have done well and things definitely needing improvement.
Feedback is such a powerful strategy to not only improve upon our own performance, but in giving feedback students are essentially consolidating and solidifying important things that they must know and understand in regards to their own learning in PE. Check out the very short video below to get a glimpse into a couple of grade 2 students giving feedback to their much older and bigger peers.