Georgia Performance Standards Framework for Physical Education
Physical Education is an integral part of the total education of every child from kindergarten through grade 12. Therefore, every student should have the opportunity to participate in a quality physical education program. It is the role of quality physical education programs to help students develop health-related fitness, physical competence in movement activities, cognitive understanding, and positive attitudes toward physical activity so that they can adopt healthy and physically active lifestyles. Quality programs are also important because they provide learning experiences that meet a student’s developmental needs, which in turn helps to improve the mental alertness, academic performance, readiness, and enthusiasm for learning. According to the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) (1) guidelines, a high-quality physical education program includes the following components: opportunity to learn, meaningful content, and appropriate instruction. Quality physical education programs should provide the student with the following benefits:
- Skill development – Develops motor skills that allow for safe, successful, and satisfying participation in physical activities.
- Regular, healthful physical activity – Provides a wide range of developmentally appropriate activities for all children and youth. It encourages young people to choose to be physically active and aware of the benefits.
- Improved physical fitness – Improves the health-related components of physical fitness (cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility, and body composition).
- Support of other subject areas – Reinforces knowledge learned in/across the curriculum and serves as a laboratory for application of content in science, math, and social studies, communication skills, and literacy.
- Self-discipline – Facilitates development of responsibility for personal health, safety, and fitness.
- Improved judgment – Influences moral development and students assume leadership roles, cooperate with others, and accept responsibility for their own behavior.
- Stress reduction – Physical activity becomes an outlet for releasing tension and anxiety and facilitates emotional stability and resilience.
- Strengthened peer relations – Physical education is a major force in helping children and youth socialize with others successfully and provides opportunities to learn positive social skills.
- Improved self-confidence and self-esteem – Instills a stronger sense of self-worth based on their mastery of skills and concepts of physical activity. Children become more confident, assertive, independent, and self-controlled.
- Goal setting – Gives children and youth the opportunity to set and strive for personal, achievable goals.