Be sure to check out the other posts in the How To Homeschool For Free series too!
This is the time of year when many people stay indoors and enjoy the warmth of a cozy home rather than get up and out of the house. It is also the time of year when many moms and dads make resolutions to be more active. Staying or getting in a healthy routine can be a tough battle with the desire to stay warm! Here are some links for helping the kids motivate you along your goals.
PE Central was one of the first physical education websites available back in 1996. Their online resources include an extensive collection of lesson plans for every grade level. There is also a large section of ways to give an assessment on physical fitness ability, motor skills, and general fitness knowledge. They do have a store for buying additional items, but the lesson plans are free and you do not need to register to look at lesson plans.
Since 1989, Spark PE has been researching physical education. This link is to the free sample lessons that Spark sells as part of their program. The free lessons are numerous, though, and would be more than enough to fill a semester of once or twice a week lessons if you do them more than once. Some lessons have printable worksheets and all the free lessons are in .pdf files.
Teach PE is a free site full of resources for teaching physical education as well as coaching sports. The site provides dozens of free worksheets to download and use in the classroom or for students to test themselves at home. There is also an interactive flash card quiz available at the end of each lesson. I thought the lesson plans on anatomy and physiology looked great, too!
PE Scholar is a newer website designed to provide a place for teachers to share ideas and resources for teaching physical fitness classes and coaching sports. There are step-by-step instructions on how to do things for each activity. For example, there is a printable lesson available for basketball that explains the steps involved in shooting the ball and another for doing a lay-up. These printable pages are of good quality and they have visual cues and assessment questions for the coach to check understanding. I noticed resources for teaching dance lessons, gymnastics, and several other sports.
PE Universe is a forum for PE Teachers. As a homeschool parent, you are a PE teacher! While you do have to register to comment the forums, you do not need to join to read-only & watch the videos set on public viewing. While I am not a public or private school PE teacher, I think some these games look fun for a co-op setting or a homeschool field day. I went ahead and joined so I could watch some of the videos that were for members only land found a few fun games I want to share with our local homeschool group for some field day fun!
Let’s not forget about teaching good sportsmanship when we teach sports to our kids. PE Gang is all about character education and playing with friends and classmates in a respectful environment. There is a manual for starting your own PE gang. It includes a teacher’s guide, student workbook, and character profiles for the kids in the program. It’s all pdf files, so you can download and get started right away!
The President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition was originally founded by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956 as the President’s Council on Youth Fitness. It now includes sports and nutrition, which are important partners in total fitness. Part of this council includes the President’s Challenge, which was temporarily down for maintenance at the time I wrote this post. Keep trying to find it. It might turn out to be your favorite since you can join your kids in the fitness challenges. I highly recommend it for a way to motivate kids (and parents!) to keep working and improve on previous activity goals. Kids and adults can join as individuals or work in teams to earn awards and recognition.
Children with special needs need activity to stay healthy, too. Visit the Special Olympics website to find a local group where a special needs child will feel welcome and able to participate. There are over 32 activities for participants to choose from and enjoy. In the Young Athletes program, children ages 2-7 play simple sports and games. The focus is on fun activities that are important to mental and physical growth.
Stay active with your kids this winter!