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Hamilton Elementary School in Port Angeles Washington is the setting for a unique physical education program that is provided for more than 300 students in Grades K-6. Kindergarten students have the opportunity to attend physical education one time per week for 30 minutes. Students in grades 1-6 attend physical class two times per week. All physical education classes are taught by certified physical education teacher who is also a National Board Certified Teacher.
The sequential and progressive curriculum, aligned with NASPE National Standards for Physical Education and Washington State Standards, is designed and presented as a means for students to focus on skills, concepts, and health-related fitness components and principles to lead healthy and active lifestyles. Centered around the theme of "The Body Shop", students participate in four themes throughout the year: the "Engine Department" to learn to take care of their heart; the "Fuel Station" to learn about proper fuel for the body; the "Parts Department" to learn about basic body parts, bones, muscles, and systems; and the Maintenance Department to apply activities and games to monitor and improve personal fitness levels. Kindergarten and First Graders are beneficiaries of a program called AlphaFit which focuses on locomotor skills and movement activities that can be done by themselves, with friends, or their families to build the foundation for activity throughout the lifespan. Second and third graders develop manipulative skills, mid-line crossing patterns and eye-hand coordination that facilitate learning of other academic subjects. Fourth and fifth graders learn to combine skills previously learned and apply them in game situations. Additionally, they learn to take responsibility for their own personal health and fitness by continually monitoring their fitness levels and setting goals for improvement. Sixth graders expand the focus on personal fitness and sport-related skill applications. The impact and influence of this dynamic program extends beyond the traditional physical education setting to involve classroom teachers, other special subject areas, and para-educators in providing students the opportunity to actively learn.
Monitoring and reporting of student learning is accomplished in many ways including administering Fitnessgram at all grade levels, multiple forms of formative and summative assessment, Rainbow of Success coded skill-challenge sheets, awarding of Body Bucks for personal-social responsibility choices, PE notebooks and Excel electronic fitness portfolios that travel with students to middle school, trimester (K-3) and quarterly (4-6) progress reports.