pegeeks,  PEPLC,  Teacher Reflection

New Academic year… new school!


For the last few years I have been working at UNIS Hanoi in Vietnam.  I have really learnt a lot during my time both in my Physical Education Department but also through our IT office and in the MSHS from different leadership models and beyond.  I have worked in several International schools and it is not a secret that schools are living organisms, and you need to really see how each department and individual affect the workings of a school before you pass judgement.   A wise person once told me that on the International circuit everyone is connected and so your past and your lessons stay with you as you move along (a bit like cyberspace, keep your record clean!).

So with a new school and a new job – Yokohama International School in Japan where I think I am teaching MSHS PE in a smaller department that is challenged by limited facilities I am going to try and set some goals for the first semester.

  1. Start small – focus on student names and their abilities first.
  2. Make no assumptions – be open minded to what is possible and the people and students I am going to meet and the spaces and equipment I have.
  3. Try to remain positive for every lesson – especially after lunch and on cold, rainy days.
  4. Integrate tech where it is useful, not just for fun.  YIS is an Apple school and we are moving to using iPads in PE – I am fully excited about this and hope to really make the most of the work I have been doing at UNIS and in my own learning. This includes:
    1. Google
    2. Coach’s Eye/Analysis/Sharing/Dropbox
    3. Blogging
    4. Fun ways to promote exercise, especially for less motivated students
    5. Trying to go paperless using Attendance, Google and iDevice apps for capturing data.
  5. Working on MYP units that focus on Concept and TGfU work rather than other more traditional practices of PE.
  6. Collaborate with the PE team and learn from new brains around me.
  7. Share my progress with the PE Geeks and see how others are doing (as usual)
  8. Investigate with my PEPLC team and the PEPLC network on curriculum and leadership.
  9. Keep running to remain less stressed! (and spend quality time with my own family)

What are you going to get up to this Semester?

Image: The clones are breaking into the Super Mario blockby Kalexanderson licensed CC BY NC SA


  • mhamada

    Hi Logan, thanks for your comment. I hope you are enjoying your course. Keeping an open mind is a great idea but I find it can be very challenging when you are new or you want to go in a specific direction that may conflict with the minds around you. Stay true to your educational philosophy and keep kids motivated and get to know them a little. Good luck.

  • Logan Kirkland

    I am a student at the University of South Alabama in a course called EDM310. I am planning to be a teacher and baseball coach upon graduating. This story really inspires me to keep an open mind and not judge students, facilities or other teachers until I have had a chance to get to know them and the things that need to be able to learn. It also inspires me to use technology to spice up my class and the students imagination. I really believe that technology keeps the students interested and in learning mode. Thank you for this article, it was very interesting, Logan Kirkland.

  • mhamada

    Blake, I would really like to work with you again (if we can make that happen), being in Japan will help I hope with quicker internet and the students here have easier access to information and iPads in class. I will check out Compressor – thanks for sharing that! This year will be challenging! But I am already super excited about it. Hope your semester 2 goes smoothly.

  • mhamada

    Hi Kylie, Thanks for your blog comment. It is always great to ‘meet’ another PE teacher and to share from their experiences! I hope that screencasting works out for you with your Gymnastics class! I found it really changed the way that I approached formative feedback and assessment in PE. Thank you for your kind words, I hope that you will share your work on Twitter too so that we can learn from your experiences and ideas! Good luck and thanks again for sharing. Rick is a great resource too!

  • Kylie Newbold

    Hi Mel,
    I have been following you on twitter for a while now and I must say that you are a very motivating, enthusiastic and engaging teacher. Thank you for sharing so many good ideas and your knowledge with PE teachers all around the world. You were highly recommended to follow by Rick Baldoch. I am giving screen casting a go in my gymnastics PE classes this term. Your article in the ACHPER journal was fantastic.
    Good luck at your new school. I started at a new school this year and I like the way you have set yourself some goals.
    Thanks again for sharing your knowledge and expertise.
    (Adelaide, Australia)

  • Blake Kampen

    Nice article Mel,
    I’d be keen to give the international peer analysis another shot using coaches eye, dropbox, and another great app I’ve just discovered ‘compressor’. It’s free and compresses from 1-10% of original video size.
    Good luck at the new school!

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