PE Sport and Physical Activity in Scotland and beyond

Archive for March, 2008

My LTS secondment draws to a close

Posted by drilly on March 29, 2008

My secondment with Learning and Teaching Scotland as PE development officer has come to an end and I will be returning to teach at Banchory Academy after the Easter holidays. Whilst I must admit I am looking forward to getting back to teaching I can honestly say that my 2 years with LTS has professionally and personally been the most rewarding of my career to date. I have really enjoyed my time and thrived working in an environment with so many positive, innovative and knowledgeable colleagues. LTS is such a dynamic and energised organisation that offered so many opportunities to become involved in work that was outside my core remit that I found it almost impossible to say no to getting involved in a number of diverse projects. In fact on reflection I over committed myself but in all honesty it was so enjoyable that at times it didn’t even feel like work. It just felt like an incredibly exciting journey. I would wholeheartedly recommend LTS to any colleague who was considering applying for a position with the organisation.

This secondment has allowed me to broaden my knowledge and expertise within PE, to network and establish a wealth of contacts and visit a number of parts of Scotland I had never been to before. The secondment has also helped me to evaluate and further develop my own thinking about physical education and education in general. I definitely have a much better appreciation of the bigger picture.

When I applied for the job I stated on my application that “Physical Education would have a specific point of reference within the organisation where people could come to for support and advice and there would be an increased number of resources available to support the delivery of Physical Education, all of which would serve to enhance the reputation of Learning and Teaching Scotland” I am going to be atypically Scottish here and suggest that this is something that I have done extremely well. I know form PE colleagues comments that the profile and value of LTS has been raised significantly in their opinion. The PE website and the 2 extremely successful conferences rank most highly within their plaudits. In fact I may have left LTS with a bit of a problem as the PE profession have had their expectations raised and want more of the same in the future.

Another big plus of working for LTS was the range of opportunities to further develop my knowledge and use of ICT. It was a fantastic to look at what was happening within Glow and across all the educational sectors and subjects and look at how the innovative use of ICT could be applied to PE. This has become a bit of a passion of mine and one that is starting to rub off on a number of colleagues. However as a subject we have a long way to go to get everyone on board there are a lot of entrenched attitudes “It cant be real physical education if the pupils are using a computer” is not an uncommon sentiment. My retort  “it depends what you allow the pupils to do with the computer or any other ICT for that matter”

Another major influence on my ICT journey was entering the blogosphere and yet again I have to thank an LTS colleague Derek for kick starting my blogging. Being able to follow and interact on the blogs of LTS colleagues such as Ewan and Laurie and innovative educators all over the country and indeed across the world has challenged my thinking and been some of the best CPD for me.

Working for LTS exceeded all my expectations and I know that I am going back to the educational chalk face a much better person for it. Thanks to all the wonderful colleagues within LTS and across the country who I worked alongside, who supported my work and made my secondment so enjoyable and rewarding.

Posted in Education, LTS, Physical Education | 3 Comments »

Fit For Girls job opportunities in Scotland

Posted by drilly on March 29, 2008

yst_stacked_150.jpgheader_logo.gifThe Youth Sport Trust and sportscotland are looking to recruit 5 part-time Trainers from across Scotland to join the Fit for Girls working team.  The overall aim of the Trainers is to deliver the Fit for Girls training programme to every secondary school community in the country.

Approximately 26 training sessions will be delivered per trainer September 2008 – June 2010 @£250 per training session + travel (self-employed, casual and secondment contracts considered)

The Fit for Girls Programme aims to give girls and young women opportunities and choices to achieve the social, psychological and physical benefits possible through physical activity. It achieves this through providing practitioners with the tools and skills to be able to successfully consult plan and implement sustainable extra curricular programmes for girls as well as creating better links with and enhancing existing curricular activity.

 Training is expected to be rolled out over the next two years starting from 1st September 2008.  With mentoring and induction sessions to be arranged for successful Trainers during August 2008.

If you have extensive working knowledge of current practice in PE and Active Schools, excellent facilitation, presentation and communication skills are self motivated and reliable we would like to hear from you. 

The closing date for applications is 25th April 2008 and interviews will be held w/c 5 May 2008.

For an informal chat please contact Hazel Williamson on

Application pack and further details can be downloaded from the Youth Sport Trust website.  Should you have any problems obtaining information please contact:

Youth Sport Trust, Human Resources on

01509 226608 or email

Posted in Girls PE, Physical Activity, Secondary PE, Sport | Leave a Comment »

Sports Illustrated Back Catalogue Online and Free

Posted by drilly on March 28, 2008

The ubiquitous American sport publication Sports Illustrated has just released the past 54 years of its back catalogue for free through the Sports Illustrated Vault The vault is fully searchable and there is also a wiki. The value of this resource for those with an interest in sport is pretty obvious however with the dawn of CfE I cant help thinking this is the type of resource that could be used to develop links between PE, literacy, English, History and Modern Studies. However difficulties may arise convincing adolescent boys that the most interesting articles are not in the swimwear editions!

Posted in Resources, Sport, web resources | 1 Comment »

PE 2.0

Posted by drilly on March 22, 2008

There is a small but significant revolution going on in the practice of some enlightened PE teachers around the country. I am delighted to be part of it and hope that in some way I have been a bit of catalyst for some of it. One of the most rewarding elements of doing this job over the past 2 years is when you introduce fellow practitioners to ideas and they take them and develop them to support their own practice. An increasing number of PE teachers I have presented to are discovering blogs and wikis. The latest to join the PE 2.0 revolution is Wim Chalmet who is developing a wiki that supports the Practical Twilight CPD inputs for teachers in Rosshire and Sutherland in Highland. I think this is another great resource as it is targeting alternative activities to enhance and challenge the traditional PE curriculum such as Omnikin, Korfball, Ultimate Frisbee. These are backed up with videos from youtube and documents and resources so the teachers who attend the courses have reference materials. I found Omnikin quite intriguing you can watch the video below. Another bonus of this wiki  is the fact it is available for those teachers who are unable to attend one of the twilight sessions they can still get some useful information. Finally and maybe most importantly it is encouraging the sharing of resources and ideas something which we could all be doing a little better in my opinion

Posted in Alternative Activities, Blogs, CPD, ICT in PE, Physical Education, wikis | 1 Comment »

SQA PE Assessment panel

Posted by drilly on March 22, 2008

I was invited to the SQA PE assessment panel to speak about Dartfish I demonstrated some of the functions and explained how schools were using the software to support assessment in their courses. I then showed examples of how some forward thinking schools are using it to complete the internal assessments requirements of courses. I was very encouraged with Jennifer di Folco (PE qualifications manager) and her willingness to embrace this technology and investigate how the SQA can accommodate schools who wish to submit evidence via this medium.

During the meeting I also found out that there is a pack of printed materials available from the Higher Marking  workshop that was run last year. The pack contains lots of useful advice and examples of marked questions. The pack can be purchased from the SQA it costs £35 and is a great CPD resource.

There will be another understanding standards workshop this year but it will focus on Advanced Higher.

Posted in CPD, datrfish, Higher, Physical Education, Resources, Secondary PE, SQA, Standard Grade | Leave a Comment »

Roehampton Primary PE Conference

Posted by drilly on March 19, 2008

4th Roehampton Primary physical education conference‘Health and Inclusion: Providing a high quality experience for all’Friday 25th April 2008 10:00AM – 4:00PM Froebel College Roehampton University London

This one-day conference aims to bring together practitioners who are working in early years’ and primary physical education to share ideas and good practice.

Booking Form

Posted in conference, CPD, Health, Physical Education, Primary PE | Leave a Comment »

UKPE Newsletter

Posted by drilly on March 12, 2008

Just came across this post the UKPE Newsletter on the on the Human Kinetics Blog  It contains a number of interesting articles including:

·  Product of the month…

·  Use change, challenge and choice to maximise participation in physical activity

·  A marathon challenge for staff at Human Kinetics

·  Schools make children more obese, leading doctor says

·  Obesity ‘in the genes’

·  Eighty-nine new specialist schools announced

·  Teachers engaged in CPD reaches 200,000

·  Swimming pool closures are national disgrace

·  Netball’s ten year game plan

Posted in Blogs, CPD, Physical Activity, Physical Education, Resources, Teaching | Leave a Comment »

A National PE Wiki your subject needs you

Posted by drilly on March 12, 2008


In a recent post about Higher and Int 2 resources I alluded to the Banchory PE wiki and the possibility of sharing resources by creating a PE swap shop. Well Lorna, Scott and Barry three teachers working in Scottish schools have taken it upon themselves to develop a wiki to share PE resources Obviously Banchory Academy has willingly contributed to this resource but here is my challenge will you do likewise. We have the chance to create something unique to benefit us all. If you have something to contribute to the site email it to Lets go for it and build an incredible online resource for everyone.

Posted in Higher, ICT in PE, Int 1, Int 2, Physical Education, Resources, Standard Grade, Teaching, web resources, wikis | 3 Comments »

HMIE: Physical Education: A portrait of current practice in Scottish schools and pre-school centres

Posted by drilly on March 12, 2008

The HMIE has just published Physical Education:  A portrait of current practice in Scottish schools and pre-school centres 

This is the first PE focused report issued by the HMIE for a number of years. The report is based on evidence obtained from HMIE visits to schools during the period 2002 to 2007 and sets out to relate existing pedagogy and curricular provision to the aspirations of Curriculum for Excellence. The report is also intended to stimulate debate about teaching for effective learning and challenge us all to review the extent to which current practice is successfully promoting the four capacities in all young learners.

To achieve these aims the report is punctuated with suggestions of the possible characteristics learners in physical education may exhibit in relation to the four capacities.  The report also includes examples of interesting practice and questions to challenge us to reflect upon current practice.

I think this is really helpful and it will be welcomed by the PE profession but my concern is that it becomes the definitive list as it has the HMIE badge. I can almost hear the computers whirring to life to convert this report to a Curriculum for Excellence tick list. I think the key point to remember is that these are only suggestions and whilst I would not argue against the inclusion of any of the characteristics etc neither would I want this to be the gold standard that everyone adopts as that would stifle innovation and suggests that excellence has an end point. I don’t believe that we can truly have a Curriculum for Excellence unless we are committed to continually improving, devloping and challenging what was previously regarded as excellent.

Posted in CfE, HMIE, Physical Education, Teaching | Leave a Comment »

Dartfish Developments

Posted by drilly on March 12, 2008

logo.gifFor those of you who know me or follow this blog you will know that my video analysis software package of choice is Dartfish for its usability, range of tools, remote control and media books are a few of the reasons why. A number of PE teachers around the country are also discovering the value of the package. Kevin  Smith in Anderson High School in Shetland has been doing some sterling work developing media book resources to support his courses.

Looking to the future there are a couple of exciting developments on the horizon. Firstly there is the Dartfish online video platform. Imagine an online environment where you can upload and download videos but with a Dartfish twist in the mix. The videos can have key positions and comments embedded adding value and increasing the usability. Imagine being able to download videos uploaded by top coaches and educators with key teaching points and tips embedded. I also think there is real scope for using it with pupils in conjunction with Glow to create meaningful and personalised learning contexts.

The second development is a version of the software for primary schools. A simpler and more cost effective solution for use in the primary sector.

I also thought I would flag up this Dartfish case study  from Julie Howell of Dartfish being used in Evesham High School. Some interesting ideas such as the Dartfish leaders course and some examples of using it across the school in different departments

Posted in datrfish, ICT in PE | Leave a Comment »