21st Century Health Promotion

Today I stumbled across a product which seeks to revolutionise the health promotion field.  The Product is the ‘S2HReplay’ which is essentially a Physical Activity tracking device. See the image below.

Heres how it works.

  1. Simply wear the device
  2. Be active and engage in Physical Activity. The device will track your physical movement and record the time you spent active.
  3. At the completion of 60 minutes of Physical Activity you will receive a redemption code which you enter online to receive real discounts from retailers such as iTunes, Kmart, Officeworks, EB Games etc.

This is an exceptional idea and one that has real potential to assist in the modification of health behaviours for the better. It also links well with multiple areas of the Health and Phys Ed curriculum as students explore the Physical Activity guidelines and Sedentary Behaviour.  Imagine the truly healthy competition you could encourage with every student in your class wearing a device during their practical classes.

The best thing about the device is that they only cost $39.95 and the price is set to drop as more and more people become aware of there potential for real health change.

Make An ‘App’ for your class

It certainly isn’t everyday that you can say you have developed a mobile application. Well, with thanks to AppMakr I can safely say this today. AppMakr is an exceptional online tool that allows you to develop native iPhone/iPod/Android and Windows mobile applications without any programming experience.

Simply use the step by step guide to include media via RSS from a variety of sources making it a potential one stop shop for all of your web content. With this in mind, I set about to develop an application across all mobile platforms that could be used within my senior PE class to bring together all of the class content.

The basic idea behind the application is to make all of the class content available to my students at any time. As my students travel for in excess of half an hour each day to school this becomes a perfect platform for them to complete bite sized, personalised pieces of revision. The best thing is that as the content is sourced to the app via RSS, they to can have an input into the content creation.

Check out the final product below.

You can access the ‘App’ in the following ways;

  • To download the iPhone based ‘App’ simply visit the app store and search VCE PE or follow the link here
  • To download the Android based ‘App’ simply visit the linkhere while on your Android phone to complete an ‘Air Drop’ install.
Its worth mentioning that the development of ‘Apps’ using www.Appmakr.com is 100% free, however Apple require a $99 developer account in order to make them available on the Apple Store. This is not the case for Android devices and apps can be installed/developed for free.

Reclaiming Physical Activity Time

One of the biggest problems teaching Senior Physical Education is the fact that practical activity becomes increasingly more difficult to complete given the immense theoretical requirements. Part of the reason is because of the pressure to ensure that all students understand the content in the lead up to the traditional exam. Now this is all well and good, however as we know students take their understanding to the next level when they have the chance to apply it to a real world practical setting. Therein lies our problem.

So how exactly do we go about changing the mode of content delivery to “Reclaim our Physical Activity Time”?

Well, during the holidays I decided to explore the Khan Academy in more detail. For those of you unfamiliar with the academy, it is basically an online school consisting of thousands of high quality YouTube videos across popular subject areas of maths, biology, physics etc. The website is aimed at “providing a high quality education to anyone, anywhere”. So I share with you the first video I watched at the academy, which was without doubt the best PD I have completed all year.

So here I am sitting at my computer in the holidays completing professional development, thinking to myself that this method of delivery could easily be applied to my senior physical education class to solve the problem mentioned above. Heres how;

  1. Start by developing a series of podcasts and tutorials focusing on different theoretical aspects.
  2. Have students watch/listen to these as homework with an attached worksheet/task
  3. Use class time to participate in practical activity and games that seeks to link together the theoretical content to develop their real world understanding.

The reasons I know this could work are that

  • Students would have access to lessons outside of school hours and they would still have the scheduled class time resulting in an increase in time spent studying the subject. This however would not increase the subject workload as students at this level are already completing homework in their own time. The benefit here is that this new style homework would now be teacher assisted, resulting in an improved understanding.
  • Students are engaged in mobile technologies, making it possible for them to complete the tutorial side of the class in what was once wasted time, such as travelling or waiting for a bus.

So what are your thoughts? Could this new switched method of delivery reclaim our ‘Physical Activity Time’ and give my students the chance to explore their understanding in a deeper sense?

Video Analysis for Everyone

If you have been following my blog in the last year , you will have noticed my enthusiasm for the online video analysis tool ‘The Zone’. Well the guys at Silicon Coach are back again with a slick new update, which has become even more powerful and accesible than it previously was. Check out the video below for a quick tour of what is now called SC Live and how you can try it all out with your students now at http://live.siliconcoach.com/

Previous posts

I’m ready for ‘The Zone’

How My Students are using the ‘Zone’

The Body Browser

Discovering the wonders of the Human Body has always been one of my favourite topics to learn and teach. From exploring the bones of the body to understanding the process of energy production, the human body seems to capture students imagination.

With this in mind, imagine my excitement when I stumbled across ‘The Body Browser‘ by Google a few months ago. As the name suggests Body Browser allows the user to navigate through the human body with speed, precision and complete anatomical accuracy. Check out the video demonstration from Betchaboy below.

 

So how could you use this in a PE/Health Classroom?

  • Explore the cardiovascular/respiratory systems and how they respond to exercise and training
  • Use it to explain the flow of blood through the body and how it supports oxygen is transportation
  • Explore the different organs of the body in detail to give students and understanding of organ donation and diseases
  • Teach the different planes of the human body and explore anatomical terminologies
  • Learn about the Central Nervous System and its role in muscle fibre recruitment
  • ……etc etc

How could you use it in your classes?