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To think kids should do more PE at school?

(102 Posts)
BlingBang Thu 22-Aug-13 11:32:30

Just curious - my kids are at primary in England - they usually get one slot of PE a week though they have a period of swimming for a few months round about Y3 as well. how much PE do your young kids get? my friend in Scotland was saying how her 6yr old gets it 3 times a week. If they can do it - why can't other schools. Also when any assemblies or shows come up - PE just seems to get dropped anyway.

OddBoots Thu 22-Aug-13 11:41:58

At the very least I'd like primary school aged children to have PE type clothing as standard uniform so they don't waste so much time getting changed and so teachers can decide to have impromptu active lessons when it suits the subject/class.

HumphreyCobbler Thu 22-Aug-13 11:43:57

I agree there should be more time for PE, but there are so many constraints and demands on the small amount of time available. It is so hard to fit everything in. Maybe it is different in scotland?

PE should happen every day imo. Some form of exercise built into the day would benefit the children hugely. But it would be hard to do logistically.

Your DC should be getting two slots of PE per week, not one.

kinkyfuckery Thu 22-Aug-13 11:45:26

kids should also be encouraged to do more activity at playtimes.

ShoeWhore Thu 22-Aug-13 11:48:34

They should be getting 2 hours of PE per week, OP.

Mine do their 2 hours PE plus the school offers quite a good range of lunchtime/after school activities many of which are sport-based and some of which are free. So last term for example, ds1 did 2 hours PE + 1 hour free tennis + half hour free cricket + 1 hour (paid for) football.

Some form of exercise built into the day would benefit the children hugely - ours are very much encouraged to be active at lunchtimes and are always outside unless the weather is totally dire.

HeySoulSister Thu 22-Aug-13 11:50:34

totally agree. there is yet another report in the news today about childhood obesity. we need more in school all the way up to year 12

HumphreyCobbler Thu 22-Aug-13 11:53:26

My ds never runs around at lunchtime. He is always playing Star Wars in a corner somewhere.

BrokenSunglasses Thu 22-Aug-13 11:53:31

PE in the younger years at primary school barely gives children any proper exercise at all. I think schools need to be upfront from the outset about this, and make it clear that children need to get exercise out of school as well.

So much PE time in reception and KS1 is spent teaching children how to put tights on themselves and turn their jumpers the right way round, and then when they do get on to PE they spend a lot of time just throwing and catching, or learning to kick a ball vaguely accurately. Some children arrive at school having barely ever done these things, so while they need to be done, it should be made clear to parents that PE in the younger years is about teaching them basic physical movement and skills. It can't be relied upon to give children the sort of exercise that gets their heart rate up.

Boaty Thu 22-Aug-13 11:55:04

DS1 got a scholarship to a indie prep, he went from PE once or twice a week at state school to PE daily...he went from 'causing disruption' to 'concentrates well' hmm you don't say!
The difference was the school day was spread out to a longer day that included a rest period. He also had Saturday school.
PE should feature more prominently in school life, not just football/netball type sports but games, gym, martial arts, dance...whatever can be sourced locally that gets kids moving and using motor skills.

LifeofPo Thu 22-Aug-13 11:55:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

flatpackhamster Thu 22-Aug-13 11:59:43


Childhood obesity is caused by the sheer volume of crisps and sweets kids eat. They would need to be doing pe all day to counter that. Pe is not the answer.

IIRC calorie consumption has actually fallen over the last 10 years. People are eating fewer calories. So it is down to PE, and it is the answer. Schools just don't do it.

Finishing at 3pm (or earlier) doesn't help. My (prep) school in the 80s had lessons until 3:15, games until 4:30 and homework until 5:10pm. I think that's probably the answer for most kids, and of course it fits in with the real working day of the parents.

PinkSippyCup Thu 22-Aug-13 12:02:08

It would be good OP, but what should be removed from the curriculum to make space for it?

Plus PE isn't just about exercise, it's education so it's about learning skills.

I really don't think childhood obesity is down to schools alone to put right. Do parents really think that child don't need to do any exercise at home because they do it at school? confused

WilsonFrickett Thu 22-Aug-13 12:02:39

My DS is in primary 4 in Scotland, he gets PE twice a week as standard.

However they get additional swimming blocks of 15-ish lessons for two years (funding permitting, delighted this is happening for him this year).

Local sports clubs do 'tester' blocks - of course they are aiming to then encourage children to sign up for their paid club or whatever - he's getting a four week taster of something next term and had another four week taster the term before last.

And their 'expressive arts' slot usually has some element of movement, eg dance, drama.

Plus they have a great playground with lots of equipment, and the TAs really encourage games/running around. I notice the playground supervisor playing tig with them this morning (although tbf there wasn't a playground supervisor before the bell last year so that's new).

In Scotland we have Curriculum for Excellence - now, while I have many, many issues with it overall, it does seem to allow HT's to be more flexible. Our school is an Active school and an Eco school so the kids are out and about a lot.

PinkSippyCup Thu 22-Aug-13 12:03:13


HeySoulSister Thu 22-Aug-13 12:04:43

is it the sweets they eat?

or 'food' aimed at cereals for example,crisps,cheestrings,kids yogurts,cereal bars ..... they are all aimed at kids and full of crap. especially 'lunchbox' food! then we have fast food.....

and snacking!!! we never snacked back in the 70's! they even have 'free' fruit in reception here for kids to 'snack' on when they feel like it

Sirzy Thu 22-Aug-13 12:05:34

It would be great if more PE was done but what part of the curriculum is dropped in order to do that?

I also think schools should be providing more lunchtime and after school sports clubs and doing them for fun not just for teams.

But school is only a small part of the problem so we need parents to encourage their children to be active if anything is going to be done to tackle obesity. It is about setting up a lifestyle where healthy eating and excerise are normal.

SilverApples Thu 22-Aug-13 12:05:57

We need parents to get off their arses too and engage in an active and healthy lifestyle with their own children, right the way through to adulthood.
Not just dump it all on schools.
Yes they should be getting 2 PE hours a week

LifeofPo Thu 22-Aug-13 12:05:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Sirzy Thu 22-Aug-13 12:06:30

I hate the foods aimed specifically at children, they seem to assume that children will only eat things if they are very sweet and are filled with crap. Just buy the normal things instead.

MrsCakesPremonition Thu 22-Aug-13 12:08:43

PE lessons at primary school are never going to solve childhood obesity. The best they can do is show children that being active is enjoyable and teach them games and sports that the children can then include in their regular play. With a bit of luck they will introduce children to a life long love of being active - which PE lessons in the past have usually completely failed to do by turning generations of children (especially girls) completely off anything remotely sporty.
It is equally important for schools to provide children with adequate outdoor space and to make sports equipment (balls, skipping ropes etc.) easily available for children to use at playtime.

LadyBryan Thu 22-Aug-13 12:08:46

DD does swimming then two sessions of PE a week (45 minutes each)

pianodoodle Thu 22-Aug-13 12:09:06

more PE! Never! It was hard enough for people like me who can't catch a ball to have to fake a sick note once a week never mind three grin

AmberLeaf Thu 22-Aug-13 12:09:12


One of my boys loves PE and all sports, he excels at them.

The other hates sports and always has.

Neither of them are anywhere near overweight of unfit.

adagio Thu 22-Aug-13 12:09:30

My LO is way to small for school yet but this is something which concerns me.

From my understanding (reading on MN) it sounds like the school day has shifted from 9-4 with an hour for lunch, two breaks in the morning and one in the afternoon when I was a lass to kick out at 2:50 in some places, a shorter lunch and one break am and pm. I am not sure I understand when or why this changed.

If it was possible (which I appreciate would have teachers up in arms therefore isn't going to happen) I would love to see a system with a couple of hours each day built in for PE and arts&crafts to balance the exam based culture of the national curriculum, oh and ditch homework for anyone under 12. By PE I mean anything physical - be it athletics, team sports, or playing mob/chase (does this still exist?).

It would make the school day longer which would help working families and ensure the kids had a more balanced day - it should have plenty of breaks built in and a proper lunch hour.

It will never happen but I can dream.

]\I am not currently entirely sure how we will manage two grown ups in full time jobs, school plus wrap around care, tea, homework AND physical activities every day - unless the poor child never goes to bed before 11…

AmberLeaf Thu 22-Aug-13 12:09:57

*or unfit.

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