Thursday, 26 January 2012

Expect the Unexpected: Inclusion

“An inclusive physical education environment is one which provides the opportunity for students of all abilities and interests to participate with their peers.” (Saskatchewan Curriculum 2010)

Inclusion…Hmm. How? Why?

Thanks to my sister, Haley George, for posting this video on my Facebook wall. This video helps people, and myself, better understand why inclusion is so important and how inclusion benefits all.

For most teachers we worry about accommodating for inclusion off all young movers. Well my answer is; allow for opportunities. Just like Jason’s Basketball story. Without his coach giving the opportunity for Jason to play, Jason would not have been able to feel the same amount of success just sitting on the sidelines. The Saskatchewan Curriculum 2010 suggests that “inclusion recognizes the inherent value, dignity, and worth of each student, and reduces perceived differences amoung students.” This statement is a prime example for Jason’s story. Jason was worthy of playing in the game, he gained dignity as the whole audience goes crazy after each 3 pointer, and for those moments on the court Jason was not perceived as ‘different’ Jason was just a young boy scoring baskets at a game. Opportunities like these can only be given to students by the teacher or, in this case, the coach.

Teachers need to provide these opportunities of successful achievement and active moving. These opportunities are not just given for those students who may have disabilities but it is also given to students who may not. With a variety of instructional strategies and opportunities all can benefit.

The only way any teacher will know how to teach in a physical education setting with students with ‘disabilities’ (The reason for the quotes is because I believe no child has a disability; that word is too negative. Children have challenges that can be overcome) is to gain experience in them. Becoming familiar with these challenges and knowing the student’s strengths, interests and abilities all teachers can make physical education positive and active for all.
What challenges do you fear about inclusive physical education?


  1. I fear everything about inclusive physical education .... because I have had really zero experience with it thus far!

    As probable classroom teachers (teaching all subjects) I think that the classroom climate and environment is very important in the ease of providing an inclusive physical education program. When all of the students are friends with and/or totally accepting of a student with a disability then I believe the gymnasium will also become a more supportive and safe place for a student with a disability to experience, learn, try and exceed what they think they can accomplish.

  2. I agree, it is the environment in which is made that helps support inclusive physical education.

  3. I love this video. I have seen a version of it before and was really impressed that the coach let him play. It also reminds me of the movie Rudy a bit where someone who is seen as "not good enough" actually is instrumental in helping the team succeed. I am struggling somewhat with thinking about ways to ensure students are included in physical education for the opposite reasons as Chelsea. I have worked at schools where the students require level 4 care and are non-verbal. It's impossible to have those students participating in a traditional physical education class and I am not sure what I would do to make sure all students in my class were able to participate.