Sport Bay of Plenty

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Sport BOP ActiveVoice: The Importance of Sport in Education

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

For schools to be effective in today’s society, I firmly believe they need to adapt their curriculum to be more relative and our teachers need to adopt their style of instruction to be more contextual. So when an opportunity presented itself at Murupara Area School to incorporate sport into the curriculum to raise success with some of their priority students, I was in.

Sport in Education (SiE) is a methodology more and more secondary schools are using to help students reach their potential. It’s an approach that uses sport as a framework for learning and aims to help students improve their academic results by putting learning into a context that has meaning for them. It also works to increase student engagement, social outcomes and raise activity levels.

The school setting is a key contributor to the development of healthy, happy and achieving young people. The SiE project has demonstrated that sport and physical activity can be used both as a concept and a context, inside the classroom as much as out.

When I first heard about this approach to education it was easy to see how this could translate to some great opportunities for our schools and be used as a way for them to explore some innovative practices that could help to improve academic outcomes for targeted groups.

It’s also an opportunity for educators to collaborate and share good practice around effective teaching pedagogies.

Murupara Area School has a large number of students participating in, and enjoying success in sport. For this school the priorities were to build a strong sense of community, raise achievement for targeted students, the provision of a responsive curriculum and retention of students in school.

From these priorities we were able to create an integrated sports curriculum that was delivered to all Year 9 and 10 students. This was a collaborative effort by teachers across all curriculums who integrated sport within their subjects. Already we have seen a dramatic change with the retention of students in classroom activity.

My involvement in the Sport in Education project has meant that I have been extremely fortunate to work alongside people such as Murupara Area Schools Deputy Principal, James Bracefield, and other school delegates in incorporating this initiative.

Gareth Yates, School Sport Team Leader

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