Thursday, June 18, 2020

Happy Final Week!!

The countdown is on! I am sure that students are going to be excited to officially start their summer vacations.  As crazy of a year this was, I am super proud of our students for hanging in there and continuing to get their work done.  It was hard for me, not being able to deliver in person PE lessons. Congratulations to all of our 5th Grade students, you are certainly going to be missed.  When I was hired in Wayland, I started as these 5th Graders were little Kindergarten munchkins.  It was really nice to have them for the past six years, sad to see them go.  

If we were in school for these final few days, I would be taking students outside for some free time, maybe if it was hot we would be playing drip, drip, drop.  We would have activities available, but it would really be time to play and talk about our summer plans.  

Drip, drip, drop is a lot of fun, and you can still play with a limited number of people!  It's just duck-duck-goose with a cup of water.  We have four of us here at the O'Connor house, and we will be playing all week long.  If you are feeling hot and want to cool off, I highly encourage convincing your family to play.  

Here is a bingo game that we put together at Happy Hollow, from the specialists.  It will most likely be shared by all teachers in the group.  Loker friends, please feel free to join in, it's not specific to Happy Hollow!  The link is below:

https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/1YfST6PbJ37QjY6vRPb_56ZNIirVTupaGwFflYkT8tTM/edit?usp=sharing

If you are ever in search of a workout to be done inside or out, you will find hundreds of them on darebee.com.  I linked to a new one each week for remote learning, but here is the main page with the entire list:


Get outside if you can, enjoy the beautiful weather.  Walk, run, hike, scavenger hunt, ride a bike... anything that you can do to keep active and happy.  If you ever need ideas or extra resources, I am always available: daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

Take Care,

Mr. O

Friday, June 12, 2020

PE Activities - Week 13

Working on the DrEAM Day materials was a lot of fun!!  All of our 5th grade volunteers did an amazing job!!  This is the first time in my teaching career that I am going to have taught students from kindergarten all the way through their 5th grade graduation.  For me, this is a very special year, we wanted to make sure the 5th graders had a chance to help lead our virtual movement day. 

We have experienced some technical difficulties with the video demonstration portion of the day.  We posted alternative directions and have kept the choice board up.  By now, I am sure you have all had the opportunity to participate in some of the challenges.  A HUGE thank you to the 5th grade helpers.  If you haven't had a chance to check out the videos, please try again at some point this week, they did an amazing job.

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1rnDano4XTR3aouGqUwRIeGgVyK4L3QanszYVczgShzA/present#slide=id.g87091ac07b_0_5

Thoughts about PE ideas for this week:

- You could continue to practice some of the DrEAM Day activities.  We continue to try and master some of these challenges, it's been a lot of fun!

- Go back and check out some of the ideas previously posted, is there anything that you missed and would like to try? 

- For DrEAM Day we selected 12 game ideas.  I've always liked the number 13, could you create your own game and record directions?  If so, I'd love to see it! daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

If you create a game and record a video, I will post them to the blog!


Take Care,

Mr. O



Friday, June 5, 2020

PE Activities - Week 12

We are really excited for Friday, June 12th!  Our Drop Everything And Move (DREAM) Day is going to be really cool.  We hope that you are able to take a little bit of time out of your day to complete some of the challenges we have for you.  Even if you aren't able to participate on Friday, maybe you can take some time over the weekend.  Either way, I would LOVE to see some pictures and/or videos!  I know that students are missing school, I am also REALLY missing seeing everyone in class.  The more pictures/videos, the better, I hope my gmail inbox explodes after it's over.  

I hope that everyone is taking some time to get some exercise in.  I am ALMOST back to running at full speed.  Some of the older students will probably remember that I injured my ankle back in February.  I wish I had a more interesting story for them, but they all know I play in an adult kickball league... so there is no tricking them.  At least my own kids, who are still young, think I am cool!!  Anyways, I am really excited that I am close to running full speed again.  

In planning for DrEAM Day, we put together a giant list of ideas.  We couldn't possibly list everything, that would have been super overwhelming.  We cut the list down to the 12 activities that we thought worked the best for this day.  In reviewing activities, I checked out all of the Minute To Win It (TV Show) challenges.  I used to run a Minute To Win It unit at my previous school, so I knew we could find some fun ones!!  Some of the ones that we liked, made the cut.  There are some others that I really like, but we didn't include for next week.  Some of them don't require a whole lot of physical effort, but still have you working on a variety of skills.  Here is a list of games that you won't see posted next week but you could try at home:

1. Split The Uprights: https://safeYouTube.net/w/eTEJ




5. Breakfast Scramble: https://safeYouTube.net/w/1WEJ


These can be really difficult, getting them done in 60 seconds or less is hard.  You could time how long it takes you to do them, and keep trying to get a better score.  You could also throw out the idea of timing it at all, and just try and do them.  Either way, it's just for FUN.  We are starting up a Minute To Win It Day here at the O'Connor house.  

Darebee Workout of the week: Born To Run - https://darebee.com/workouts/born-to-run-workout.html

If you're indoors, here is another good workout with a variety of exercises: https://safeYouTube.net/w/oeFJ

YGym: The YMCA has a ton of really great videos available on their YouTube page.  The majority of the kid ones are labeled ages 5-9.  I wish they didn't label them this way, these activities are great for children and adults of any age: https://safeYouTube.net/w/ngFJ

I hope everyone has a great week, can't wait for next Friday! 

Take Care,

Mr. O




Thursday, May 28, 2020

PE Activities - Week 11

I hope that everyone is excited for our DrEAM (Drop Everything And Move) Day coming up on Friday, June 12th!! We have 5th Grade student volunteers helping with videos for all of the activities, I think it's going to come together really well.  

As for PE class, I hope everyone is taking some time out of their days to get some fresh air and move outside.  Even if it's in a small space, do some stretching or exercising in place.  I know I feel so much better when I am able to do this with my family.  

One thing that students could do would be to make their own workout, similar to the ones I post from darebee.com and be the instructor for their family.  They could design it with pictures, get really creative, even make up their own new exercise.   As the instructor, they could complete the exercises to show their family members how to complete them.  My daughter (2nd Grade) has been making her own exercise videos on her kids camera, she gets really into it!  I think she is looking to get YouTube famous...

Other outdoor activities that come to mind: Tag, Hopscotch, Red Light/Green Light, Four Square/Two Square, Create Your Own Obstacle Course, Relay Races, Fishy Fishy Cross My Ocean!

If you're struggling for ideas or maybe don't have someone available to exercise you on a certain day, here is a list of suggestions:

1) Darebee - Best Self Workout


2) Pick A Superhero Themed Workout

Many of the superhero warmup stations that students completed at the start of class, came from Mr. C, a PE teacher from Maryland.  He has a nice selection of posters, we used them a lot this year!


3) Group HIIT - Pick Your Own Workout

Group HIIT has a set of workouts available for free.  They list how long they are, what the activities are, and the levels.  You could do one as a warmup or pick a group of them for an extended workout.


4) Video Game Themed Workout    

Good for a rainy day, it has a lot of characters kids like, good variety of exercises!


5) The Kids Coach Fitness Workout - Dinosaur Land

This is another good one that you can use if indoors:


Whatever you decide to do, have fun!!  I miss seeing everyone in class, and I hope that you're all well!!

Take Care,

Mr. O




Friday, May 22, 2020

PE Activities - Week 10

I know that everyone is juggling a lot of different things at home, so if you can't get outside, I totally get it!  If you do have the chance to get out, please do!!  This nice weather is SO incredibly important to us at our house.  We are trying to remain positive no matter what the day looks like, but you can almost FEEL the positive energy coming from the sun and warm temperatures.  I just saw temps in the 80's for the upcoming week, HORRAY!!!

I will continue to add a variety of links, some that can be done outside, and some indoor activities.  

Warm Up:

1) Create Your Own!

A few times during the school year, we will do a "Follow the Leader" warm-up.
Students have the opportunity to enter the middle circle and do any school appropriate
movement with everyone else following along. Everyone is in a circle formation, spaced
out with enough room to exercise. I give students about 15 seconds to lead the class and
then we switch. It's really fun to see students lead the group, using their own creative
ideas. This can be done at home as well, inside or outside. You could have everyone
take multiple turns, using a bunch of different movements. I have seen some really
awesome moves with this one! A lot of times we have students create their own
dance moves, it's a riot!

2) YMCA - Superhero Workout 

This is a quick five minute video from the YMCA, with a cool superhero theme.  The perfect length for a warm-up!

https://safeYouTube.net/w/WcUG

Activities:

1) Create Your Own Obstacle Course

This can be an indoor or outdoor activity.  You can gather anything that ypu have at home, and make our own course.  For our family, we have a ton of sticks, dog bones, plastic containers outside that we can use.  If we are inside, blankets and stuffed animals will do the trick!  Using a timer, each participant can be timed in completing the course, creating a high score.  

2) Darebee - Shape Shifter

Weekly Darebee suggestion - These workout posters can be completed inside or outside.  This is one that all of our students can try, and modify based on age/ability.  


3) PE Bowman - Video Game 2

I know that there are many kids out there that enjoy video games.  I was all about my Nintendo and Sega back in the day.  A PE teacher created an active youtube video game that students can participate in.  I posted level 1 a while back, this is level 2, my kids love it!


4) Group HIIT Workout

This is a good full body workout for kids.  It has a variety of exercises and is 17 minutes in length.  


Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or if you are looking for more ideas!

daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

Take Care,

Mr. O

Friday, May 15, 2020

PE Activities - Week 9

Dear Families,


I hope that everyone is doing well.  We are very excited to announce that Friday, June 12th will be DREAM Day for all Wayland elementary schools.  There will be no academic responsibilities on this day, and students will be encouraged to Drop Everything And Move!  Activity ideas will be provided to all families, and everyone could pick and choose what they participate in.  We understand that there are a variety of things going on at each household, making it difficult to complete all activities that you would like.  Using the weekend days would be great as well.  Students will be asked to send in pictures of themselves participating, so we can put together a fun slideshow!  More information will be provided as we get closer.  

In the meantime, here are some things we can have students try out this week:

Warm Up:

1) PE Bowman - Stuffed Animal Workout    

This is a cute warm-up geared towards our younger friends. It has students use one of
their favorite stuffed animals. I think that I would give it a try with K/1st.

2) Justice League Themed Workout

Students of all ages can do this one, but it has some more challenging exercises, so the older students might be more into it!  

https://safeYouTube.net/w/TH6E

Activities:

1) P.E. With Joe - TheBodyCoachTV


Joe has been putting out a new workout for kids every day.  They are really well done, and are all around 30 minutes.  He mixes things up with a variety of movements, and is really motivating. Here is a link to one of his workouts that we liked, but you can't go wrong with any of them!  Feel free to check out his page for different ideas.


2) Darebee - Sprinter Workout    

Weekly Darebee suggestion - I like this one a lot, great cardio with different levels of challenges.  I post a suggestion from them every week, but feel free to explore their site, they have so many great workout posters.


3) YGym #1 - YMCA

This has a nice variety of exercises.  It's labeled for students aged 5-9, but I went through the whole thing and find that it's age appropriate for anyone.  If you find that the instructor is going  slower than you, that's fine, you can go as hard as you want! We have done the majority of these exercises in PE class, so they should be very familiar with them.

4) Moe Jones Workout

Moe is a fitness instructor that I have been following for years, he publishes some nice ideas and has some of his own personal workouts as well.  This is one that we have tried and enjoy, I like ones that are a little bit longer in length. 


Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or if you are looking for more ideas!

daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

Take Care,

Mr. O

Friday, May 8, 2020

PE Activities - Week 8

Dear Families,


Last weekend I was pumped about the upcoming weather.  This weekend has me a little less excited... temperatures in the 40's and the chance of snow accumulating is definitely not what we are looking for in May.  If you're in Wayland or Boston, I doubt you will get much snow, but here in Worcester, we will probably get six inches.  If so, maybe we can have one final snowball fight!

** Update to that prediction: I was totally wrong, thank goodness!  We saw a few flurries, but that was it!  

To stay active here, we have been doing a lot of walks and hikes around the neighborhood.  It's really nice to get outside, even if it's 15 minutes to chase the dogs and look for worms!  If we are stuck inside, we test out all of the links that I post.  The kids really like being able to help me find the best resources!

Here are some things that we enjoyed, and are options to work on this week:

Warm Up:

1) Prime Coaching Sport

Here is a great seven minute warm-up posted by a PE teacher that I have borrowed ideas
from in the past. Great length for a warm-up and a nice variety of movements.

2) PhysEdDepot - Scavenger Hunt Fitness 

I like this one because it has students use different things that they might have at home.  It also has some questions for the students between movements that are light and fun.  

Activities:

1) Shape America Fitness Chart


Shape America has put together a nice chart of exercise suggestions.  There are some on here that I haven't tried with students in class before.  It could be nice to introduce some new options.  Hopefully everyone in the family could join in in trying these!

https://www.shapeamerica.org/uploads/pdfs/2020/resources/activity-ideas-calendar_english.pdf

2) Creating Activity Game Boards

My kids came up with an activity idea based on a traditional board game.  I really like this idea because it allows students to be super creative and pick things that they really like to do.  Check out the link for details!

http://bottomupot.com/creating-our-own-activity-game-board/

3) At Home Family Fun - Mrs. Fraser

Mrs. Fraser put together a fun list of creative play ideas.  These ideas work really well because they can be played anywhere!

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1fbXQAmsgO-BVAuhY5Ku6TjT00l8McNXmAEIajbL6gEM/edit?ts=5e96fa65

4) Darebee - Mayhem Workout

Our weekly suggestion from the Darebee site, this one is great for the younger students.  Many students will want to make this more challenging for themselves.  This has a 20-count for the plank, many will want to create a higher goal.

https://darebee.com/workouts/mayhem-workout.html

They also have a section on their site where students cant print out their own fitness dice.  Students could use this, or get even more creative and create their own custom dice.

https://darebee.com/daredice.html

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or if you are looking for more ideas!

daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

Take Care,

Mr. O

Friday, May 1, 2020

PE Activities - Week 7

Dear Families,


I hope that you are all doing well.  This weekend weather forecast has me very optimistic!  I can't wait until we are have a stretch of beautiful weather.  Being able to get outside and play in the fresh air is really therapeutic for us.  Even if your space is limited, if you can get out at all, please try and find time!  If the weather is dreary, I hope that you can use some of my links to help you through the day.

Here are some things that we can have students work on this week:

Warm Up:

1) PE Bowman - Backpack Workout

My kids have been using their backpacks to store all of their academic work at home.
They are still using their classroom folders, I think that it helps them stay connected with
school. This video is a workout using school backpacks, I am going to introduce it to my
kids this week!

2) Little Sports - Wake Up Exercises

This one is a little bit longer, and it's animated.  It has a nice mix of exercises that 
is good for students of any age.

http://quietube7.com/v.php/http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skSbg1IGup8&t=3s

Activities:

1) YMCA - Rope Drills


This focuses on footwork and is a nice cardio workout.  There are two levels, students can start with beginner and some will want to move on to advanced:

Beginner - https://ymca360.org/on-demand/category/17/videos/47
Advanced - https://ymca360.org/on-demand/category/17/videos/48

2) Homemade Scoops

At Loker and Happy Hollow, we are very fortunate to have a lot of equipment to use in our activities.  When I first started teaching, I was at a lot of schools that had no equipment.  I got creative in making things for students to play with.  If you're looking for some extra equipment, here is a post I created about making your own scoops!  


3) Darebee - Plank Workout

We plank a lot in PE!  If students are missing me asking them to plank, here is a good alternative from Darbee.  

https://darebee.com/workouts/two-minute-plank-workout.html

4) Rock Paper Scissors Workout

Students have had a lot of RPS practice this year in PE class!  I consider myself a pretty good referee, but with 20+ students, I can't catch everything.  When there is a close call, we encourage students to talk things out, and avoid any arguing.  Usually, they don't want to waste time, and want to get back into the action.  A simple rock-paper-scissors best of one helps solve things.  This workout has students using their RPS skills.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNtHoj-SWE4&feature=youtu.be&list=PLGS-YpNYBNvd64jdVQWakrNw8GPF4ZF0L

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or if you are looking for more ideas!

daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

Take Care,

Mr. O

Monday, April 27, 2020

PE Activities - Week 6

Dear Families,


I hope that everyone had a nice April Vacation!  Our kids are in the Worcester Public School District, and they decided to get rid of vacation and work right through.  While we kept the lesson plans going, we still made sure to set aside plenty of time for fun! 

Like everyone else, I was super disappointed to hear the news of school closing for the rest of the school year.  I will be making appearances in classroom meetings at both schools while updating activity ideas.  I am looking forward to seeing students as I am able to pop into meetings, it's been too long!  I would love to see any pictures or videos of students being active at home!!  If you have a chance, please feel free to send something: daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

Here are some things that we can have students work on this week:

Warm Up:

1) PE Bowman - Video Game Warmup

A PE teacher created a really cool video game themed workout for kids. At five minutes
in length, it's a nice little warm up with a different twist!

2) Pump it Up - Fresh Start Fitness

This is one that students may have seen on GoNoodle.  Another one that is quick and good to start off with.  

3) HealthWorks! Youth Fitness 101

Another good warm up option with a variety of exercises to get you going!

http://quietube7.com/v.php/http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dRQf3yFXO1Y

Activities:

1) YMCA - Yoga With Corri


A lot of the resources that I have been posting along with most of what I have seen is high energy workout related.  I am going to start posting some alternatives, starting with this great YOGA resource produced by the YMCA:

https://ymca360.org/on-demand#/category/86/videos/87

2) Team Building Challenge - Cross the Ocean Challenge

This is an activity that we run with the students at both Loker and Happy Hollow.  We change the rules based on the grade level, but modifications could be made to fit any age level!  We ran this with our kids at home, all we needed was paper plates.  At school, we use this to work on our teamwork and communication.  This tends to be very popular, and I had planned to do it again before the end of the school year.  I wrote out the directions on my wife's blog:


3) Darebee - Hermit Workout

I absolutely love the variety of workouts this site produces!

https://darebee.com/workouts/hermit-workout.html

4) Super Deck Fitness Game

Shape America released an idea for students to create their own deck of cards.  After directions on creating their own deck, it lists a variety of games that can be played with them.   This way, students can pick and choose the games that they like.  I think it's a great resource:

https://www.shapeamerica.org/uploads/pdfs/2020/resources/SuperDeck-Color-Your-Own.pdf

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or if you are looking for more ideas!

daniel_oconnor@wayland.k12.ma.us

Take Care,

Mr. O

Happy Final Week!!

The countdown is on! I am sure that students are going to be excited to officially start their summer vacations.  As crazy of a year this wa...