Miraculously, we have made it to the end of this academic year! We have had two national lockdowns, numerous burst bubbles and Covid ‘recovery’ to contend with, but we’ve made it. With the hope that next year will have some semblance of normality, what do we want it to look like?
Look at your PE and Sport Premium Report
What have you said your next steps will be with the plans you have put in place using your allocation this year? The sustainability of these plans has always been the key to effective spending of this funding, so take a look at the final column of your report to give you an indication of what your next steps may be in 2021/22.
School Improvement Plan
What are the targets of the school as a whole for next year? Can PESSPA help in any way? A good example of this would be making a link between higher attainment and physical activity. If the aim of the school is to increase SATs and Phonics screening results, then active brain breaks and high-quality resources at break and lunchtimes could be the answer. There is strong scientific evidence to show physical activity supports concentration, so not only would your pupils be more active, but they could achieve better too!
New EYFS Curriculum
There is a brand new EYFS curriculum coming into play in September, with a greater focus on gross and fine motor skills. This is a great opportunity for us PE specialists to really get our teeth into the Early Years and start our pupils on the road to life-long physical activity from the second they arrive in our settings. Consider how you can get your Nursery and/or Reception children more active in the next academic year. Helen Battelley provided a brilliant workshop for us on this, which you can watch here.
Physical Activity and Social Skills
Covid-19 has had a huge impact on children’s social skills. So it is vital we use the power of our subject to bring children together again. For 2021/22, consider providing more opportunities for team games and problem solving in your PE lessons, through fun activities that promote high quality communication. Children need to be given plenty of occasions to lead groups, to listen to others and to work collaboratively. This, alongside general fitness and wellbeing, is where the true ‘Covid recovery’ lies.
More Activities More of the Time!
Finally, we know that less children than ever reached the recommended daily amount of exercise during the pandemic. Therefore, we need to do all we can to get our pupils’ fitness levels back up. For next year, think wider than just your PE lessons. Consider how active your break and lunchtimes are, as well as the opportunities for movement during class-based lessons. Our Ultimate PE Leader Pack has loads of great audits to carry out to check the activity levels of your school, and our Creating an Active Lunchtime workshop provides effective ideas for encouraging children to be more active in their ‘down time’.
This blog has hopefully given you some starting points to consider when looking ahead to September. But also, if you are ready for a summer break of doing absolutely no work whatsoever, that’s fine too!