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Name: Lynn Barry
Describe one or two of the newest and/or most innovative activities that you do with your students in physical education?
I believe I teach the whole child.I utilize the cognitive, physical, and affective domains in each lesson. I continue to teach the newest trends and concepts in relation to what is important to my students. My approach is to teach activities such as flag rugby, lacrosse, Yoga/Pilates/weights, indoor tennis, golf, juggling, dance, jump bands, & rhythms to name a few. I use a variety of teaching methods such as cooperative-project adventure based activities, sport education model, competitive and recreational activities, and a variety of fitness related activities.
Students use pedometers to track their fitness levels and have "sportsfolios" where they set personal fitness goals, complete self-assessment of fitness testing, journal entries, and learning and understanding anatomical terminology through weekly practice and quizzes.
It is my teaching style and personality to get involved in our parent organization and community to help receive support for my program by participating in fundraisers.My biggest goal at this time is to raise enough money to build a climbing wall. Also, I organize family fitness nights to expand and promote the benefits of quality physical activities that support my program.
What is your particular expertise in regard to teaching physical education – what is the focus of your teaching?
My main focus on teaching in the middle school level is fitness.I also stress the importance of lifelong activities and non-traditional sports and activities.It is my goal to teach diverse units of instruction so that a student may be able to learn and develop new enjoyment of an activity that will provide a positive experience of physical fitness and life long learning. I strongly believe that if I participate in activities with the students and introduce them to many fitness activities, they will want to enjoy the benefits of working out. It is my duty as a PE teacher to help students develop and improve skills in all activities. I want to make a difference in the lives of our children through content knowledge, demonstration and participation of why physical education is crucial in this world!
What is your philosophy for physical education – what do you believe in?
I believe that every single student with all abilities and/or disabilities has a right to learn and be physically active.I believe teachers need to provide a warm, caring, enthusiastic, and supportive teaching environment to enhance student learning and success. My goal for my students is for me to "lead by example." I believe that if I continue to be a positive role model and encourage students to take challenges, work hard, and have fun, they will have success. I have an "open-door" atmosphere in the classroom so students are able to feel welcomed, appreciated, and accepted within their physical abilities in my class.
I strongly believe teachers should focus on teaching appropriate practices with middle school students in a least restrictive environment that is conducive to all students. I focus on a variety of methods such as: individual and team sports, cooperative, outdoor, strategic, innovative, and fitness-related activities. It is my goal as a physical educator to provide students with appropriate information regarding physical activity in order to promote lifelong physical fitness, health, and recreation. I want students to appreciate the art of movement and participate in physical activities that are enjoyable for a lifetime!
What does being a physical education Teacher of the Year mean to you?
Being 2009 National Middle School Teacher of the Year brings so much honor and excitement to me as a teacher, but it is merely a reflection of the students I teach, the staff I work with, and the community I represent.I feel like this award is like giving back to my school and my school district as positive exposure that supports the values and promotes physical activity for our youth.Being teacher of the year also allows me to continue to advocate for quality physical education and fitness for a lifetime to all!I feel so honored to represent the Northwest District and to be a part of the NASPE family and all the new people I have already met. Everyone is so amazing!
What do you do to help other physical education teachers plan and implement exemplary programs?
Within my school and school district, I help support all PE teachers through meetings such as PLC –Professional Learning Communities and workshops.I advocate to the professionals to attend state PE conferences, and I provide them with resources specific to their needs as teachers at all grade levels.This allows me to help promote quality and appropriate practices for teachers.In my teaching career, I have mentored elementary PE teachers within my district, mentored six practicum and student teachers, presented at state conferences, assisted in the curriculum mapping k-8 development, and continue to help all teachers with curriculum planning and assessment.
Any quotes from students about you as a physical education teacher, or the classes taught by you?
"Ms. Barry is my favorite teacher because she lets you do what you can and she participates in PE with us instead of just watching." ~Sierra
"Ms. Barry is the best PE teacher because she treats us how we treat her, with complete respect. She is like a kid." ~Jayden
"I think Ms. Barry has a great attitude. She is always positive.If you have a question, she always answers it and never thinks it is a stupid question." ~Molly
"Ms. Barry always makes learning fun. I feel like she is in touch with every student." ~ Beau
"Ms. Barry is a fun teacher. And when she explains instruction, I CAN understand her!" ~Jose
"Ms. Barry uses a positive teaching method that isn't too strict or too slack.Many look to her as their hero." ~ Andrew
"Ms. Barry is an incredible teacher.She makes every activity more fun than it would be without her. She does the exercises and activities with us.And the respect is mutual.I couldn't ask for a better teacher." ~ Emma
"I think you have been a really fun gym teacher.You are always finding something new for us to do." ~Cynthia
"I think Ms. Barry is a wonderful teacher. She is nice and easy to talk to and she makes working out fun!" ~Nicole
"The great thing about Ms. Barry is that she can connect with anyone.Like when I was behind in her running club and she stayed behind with me and talked to me and it was really cool." ~Jacob
"Ms. Barry is the best, most kind, caring and funniest teacher I've ever had." ~Linn
"YOU ARE THE MOST AWESOME TEACHER EVER!" ~Matt
"You make us laugh and make PE fun!" ~Koreena
"Ms. Barry always has so much energy and keeps us going." ~Kendra
"Ms. Barry always enforces your personal best.Class is always fun and I think that is why she believes that everyone's best is different and she helps you get there." ~Antonia
"I think you are a good teacher.You keep us positive and wanting to do the activities and you join our games and keep it fun with your funny and nice attitude." ~Naomi
"Ms. Barry is a great teacher.She always makes me smile.When I see her during the day, it makes me happy to know that I have 7th period soon.I have the best PE teacher a class could ask for."~Xaiver
"She always starts with a smile, and ends with a laugh!" ~Pedro
List three of your favorite conference session titles that you have presented, with a brief description of each.
1. Presenter at CCEPE (Children's Council for Expanded Physical Education, Oregon (2003) "Dance and Rhythms in the Middle School."
2. Presenter at OAPHERD (October 2008) "Creative Movement in Physical Education Using Jump Bands."
3. Presenter at CCEPE (Children's Council for Expanded Physical Education, Oregon (February 2008) "Fitness for EVERY body"
Any additional major teaching awards you have received:
1. 2006 Oregon City School District and the Chamber of Commerce "Teacher of Distinction" Award (Teacher of the Year).
2. 2007 Oregon Middle School Physical Education Teacher of the Year (OAHPERD).
3. 2008 Northwest District Middle School Physical Education Teacher of the Year (NWAHPERD).
4.2009 National Middle School Physical Education Teacher of the Year (AAPHERD/NASPE).