Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Technology in Health

Taken From
Technology being a part of our daily life is no longer science fiction. This has become reality! I contribute this fact to the ever growing popularity of smart phones and having a connection with social sharing websites. It seems as though people live their lifes on the web and are always expressing themselves in different ways. From the occasional comical comment, to "what type of bagel" that they are having with their "iced coffee." Why can't this technology be used to benefit people in a more meaningful manner than just socially. Maybe the answer is already here.
Applications, or "apps" as it is said in the new aged texting lingo are normally used for entertainment. Their is no reason though that this prevalent resource can not be used for much more! The opportunity for apps in education are endless, because the number of people that use cellular devices is increasing each day. Within my Adapted Physical Education class we were introduced to this very type of technology. Activities were created using the the app interface and students were able to interact for a cognitive benefit. Also at the same time that they were performing the activity fine motor skills were being refined. The possibilities for this type of technology within A.P.E.  classes are endless. These tools are still in the developmental stage, but I feel within a short time this technology will play a crucial role in A.P.E. Applications like "Zamzee," and "OptumizeMe" are already being used within the world of health and fitness. Zamzee is an app that tracks the physical activity of the user throughout the day. This is monitored using a pedometer type device that one can carry with them in their pocket. By doing this the user can track if their activity level is speeding up, or slowing down in a daily log. Also multiple users can join up and challenge each other in to performing fitness based activities. The more activities an individual does the more points are awarded. This brings in friendly competition, and in turn makes the users work harder. OptumizeMe is based on the same premises as Zamzee, but now individuals can display their daily log on social sharing networks. This makes the user work harder, so that better results can be shown. These types of  applications have already been proven to increase physical activity by thirty percent! This to me is an astounding number!
Having ones physical activity increased by thirty percent is such a benefit to overall health! Having this type of technology be applied in Physical Education to me is the future of the P.E. curriculum. Having the ability for students to monitor their physical activity throughout the day, making sure that they are getting the recommended sixty minutes of activity a would be such a benefit. This allows the students to utilize the skills taught to them during class and then express them in a meaningful manner. The development of healthy habits at a young age within students is one of the many paths to lifelong fitness, and because of advancing technology I feel as though the outlook of the health across the WORLD has a bright future!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Teachers, Schools and Society: Ch. 1-2 Part Two

Taken From
There are many ways in which people learn. A domain of learning is called the "cognitive domain." This encompasses the different styles of learning like; auditory, visual, and kinesthetic learners to name just a few. Many people are a mix of multiple learning styles, with one being a little more predominate than the other. I am a visual learner as well as a kinesthetic learner. The "affective domain" of learning includes ones attitude, values, and emotions. A large part of the affective domain involves ones drive to always improve themselves, and to have a "can do" attitude. Also as I have stated before in previous articles physiological factors play a large role in how one learns. A healthy and happy individual is a more productive individual. Having a healthy emotional state due to a positive outlook on self-worth, and self image allow an individual to be happier and more productive.
Teachers can respond to different learning styles for either the positive, or the negative. A teacher can teach in one learning style usually the on that they best learn in and only reach a small percentage of the class, or they can be a proactive teacher. I mean that they can teach in multiple styles through out multiple environments. As a Physical Education teacher you can incorporate visual aids, music, and physical activity. One method of teaching that encompasses all the ones listed above would be using an exergame based unit. This all correlates to Howard Gardener's "Multiple Intelligences Theory." This simply states that people learn in different ways, and that teachers must conform their teaching in order to best teach to the needs of the student. Gardner has identified eight intelligences thus far. These being; logical-mathematical, linguistical, bodily-kinesthetic, spatial, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalist types
Their are many levels of multiculturalism within the schooling curriculum. Multiculturalism education has developed into multiple themes, these include; expanding the curriculum to reflect America's diversity, using teaching strategies to encompass multiple learning styles, better support teachers by making them knowledgeable of how to interact and teach people of different cultures, and lastly a commitment to social justice and global equality. Mainstreaming bilingual/multicultural students into regular classes has become a law for most states. A fear has been brought about that English will be lost as our native tongue. This fear has led to students only being allowed one year to acclimate to a total foreign environment in every sense of the word, and then be expected to learn and give forth the same quality of work native speaking students do. This to me is quite unfair. My grandfather was born in Yugoslavia, and he had an experience similar to this when he came to America. He was never able to fully understand the language, therefore he was not bale to perform in school to the best of his ability. Obviously the times are different now, but the principle is still the same!
The needs of differently abled learners are met in variety of ways in today's classrooms. Thanks to new acts that have been instated like "IDEA" which outlines differently abled individual's rights to education, and the educational process that should be followed. Also IEP, or "Individualized Education Programs" should be written, and what procedures need to be put in place in order to adhere to the IEP. Inclusion is a large part of Adaptive Education. Inclusion simply refers to differently abled individuals having the right to take part in regular schooling for the social and cognitive enrichment. Also I do not feel as though adaptive technology would cause any bitterness, or even technology used in helping bilingual students. Technology is their to aid and enhance all learners, as long as it is fairly used within teaching I do not believe jealousy will become a problem.

Sunday, January 29, 2012


Taken From
As I stated in previous article I believe that a healthier student is a happy student, therefore they are more productive when it comes to education. One of the issues I brought up was the fact that school based lunches were inadequate in reinforcing the nutrition guidelines that Health and Physical Educators were trying to bestow among students. How can one practice healthy living, if the institution that they are being taught in does not practice healthy living? It seemed as though it was the day after I wrote about this a national reform was put in to act based on this very principle.
The last time the USDA had reevaluated the school lunch program was over fifteen years ago, and I feel as though this was too long. A large amount of research has been performed since then stating the importance of a healthy diet, and the USDA was lax in their attempts on recognizing these facts. Also what strikes me as being quite an alarming correlation is the time in which the reform took to be instated, and the time in which it took for the number of obese children within the United States to almost double. They are the same! This new reform follows the 2010 dietary guidelines for Americans. Monitoring of caloric intake, sodium levels, and saturated fat levels are among some of these. More whole grains are being implemented within the school lunch programs, and soon all grain products will become whole grain. When comparing previous lunch menus to that of lunch menus now one can see the drastic improvement that has been made. I am quite pleased with this reform, as well as the other programs Michelle Obama has proposed for health education among school aged children. I look forward to seeing how this influences the life's of students, and how it helps them become healthier more progressive individuals.   


At SUNY Cortland all Physical Education majors are required to take an outdoor education class. This class is held at SUNY Cortland's own education center located in the heart of the Adirondacks, Raquette Lake. This facility offers an array of activities that many people have never experienced. These being canoeing, hiking, and mountain climbing to say a few. The main purpose of this class is to teach basic survival/orienteering skills to students, as well enhancing team bonds among learners. Health and Wellness include multiple levels. These are physical, emotional, social, intellectual, environmental, and spiritual. The Outward-bound Processing Model targets all of these areas.
The experience that I had at Raquette lake I feel was one for the better. I found out many characteristic of my own I had not known were there. Also I was able to see people for how they can truly be once the facade of comfort that our modern society brings is taken away. The group I was with was a great group, we had many struggles, more than most due to the situations that were presented to us. We overcame the adversity and were able to bond and flourish. I have a newly reinforced respect for nature now, its power for taking, as well as its power for giving. After I came back from Raquette lake I brought with me a new found strength. I was finally able to get off the medication for my traumatic brain injury and begin to go on the road to recovery. I had changed nothing in my life up until this point except having that one week in nature. This experience did not cure me, but it instilled within me the confidence to try and cure myself.
I feel as though the "project adventure" courses within the schooling curriculum would be quite beneficial to students. This program allows for team bonding, as well as outdoor education. These types of classes can give students the understanding of how to use their community resources in a positive manner. During my 256 teaching observation the high school I was posted at had a program just like the one I am describing. The district had access to a private park with a lake. Here the Physical Education teachers would show the students lifelong activities like canoeing, and orienteering. Many of the students had never gone to this resource before, even though they had spent most of their life within the district. Now though they had the knowledge to go out and perform these activities on their own. This is the main purpose of "New Aged" Physical Education teachers. This is to instill within students the tools they need to be healthy, productive, confident individuals throughout their life. I wish to base much of my teachings off of this philosophy and influence students for the better.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Jumping Toward a Healthy Heart

Taken From
Jump Rope for Heart is a national fundraising organization that raises money for cardiovascular disease, stroke, and health education. This program is sponsored by AAHPERD and AHA. Within in this program knowledge about heart disease, and preventative measures that can be taken are presented to students and then shown through the physical. Students take place in a wide array of activities that promote cardiovascular endurance and a health enhancing style of life.
For the past two years I have helped with this program at the Midlakes Elementary school. It has been not only an educational experience for the me as a future teacher, but for the students and community as well. That is why I feel strongly about this program, because it allows a chance for the parents to come in after hours and learn about what their child is actually doing within Physical Education. It gives the children to be active outside of school, which is a growing problem within the United States due an every increasing level of sedentary lifestyles. This program allows a chance for the community to come together and learn about health awareness efforts, and how a health enhancing lifestyle can be applied throughout daily life.
I enjoy participating in this program, because it allows me to give back to a community where I grew up and that gave so much to me. It allows me to teach to others the knowledge I have obtained during my years in higher education on my path to becoming a Physical Education teacher. I have made bonds with many parents, students, and professionals through the networking I have done during this program. This is the type of teaching I would like to base my curriculum off of when I become of Physical Education teacher. Lifelong fitness is a passion of mine and as I have stated before a "healthy learner leads to a happier learning." Physical Education is more than just "rolling out the ball," and community uniting programs like this one help to demonstrate the New Era of Physical Education. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Price Paid

What is the price one must pay in order to be the best at their sport? Most athletes begin sports at a young age and for many once college, or even high school is over that is the end of their athletic career. Only a chosen one percent of individuals will ever have an athletic career beyond their mid twenties. Technology is advancing each day within the world of sporting equipment. Lighter, stronger, more efficient gear for sport is being invented each day. This allows athletes to play harder and quicker! One thing though is not advancing so quickly. This is the human body. The human body has limits to how hard it can be pushed and through proper training these limits can be stretched, but inevitably a breaking point will be reached.

I feel as though this is the reason as to why concussions within sports are becoming such a serious issue.I have had first hand experience with the ill effects of concussions, and it was probably the worst life changing event in my life. It brought me from a powerful, joking, loving individual to a weak, withdrawn, and bitter person. I am somewhat better from it now. I still suffer effects like loss of memory, motion sickness, and a sensation of what I can only describe as looking at the world from behind a sound proof mirror. For almost a year I felt as though I was watching myself from outside of my own body, not only watching myself suffer, but the ones around me suffer. I could tell that my burden had become a burden for them as well. I thought I would never get better, and that this was going to be how I would feel for the rest of my life. The feeling of normalcy was one I had almost forgotten, I knew it existed but would never be in my reach again. This eventually changed though and I am slowly returning to the person I once was. I feel for the individual within the video of "Concussions and Sports." I know exactly how she feels having a dedication to a sport that she does not want to give up, as well as the social impact she is suffering due to her injury. These are all effects I suffered through. She needs to understand though that it comes a time when your personal safety and health must supersede that of everything else. 
When an individual goes back into a sport having already suffered a concussion they can receive what is called second impact syndrome. This is where another concussion is obtained before the previous injury has healed. This can result in severe brain injury, and in severe cases death. In Montreal Canada, concussions have become a severe issue with the sport of hockey. Resulting from an incident where an athlete was put into a game before having sufficient time to heal, and consequently suffering a blow causing severe brain injury, the Lystedt Law was developed. This law states that no athlete should return to game play that is suspected, or showing signs of a concussion until a medical practitioner has cleared them. I feel as though this is the correct way to go about treating concussions in sports. Also a technique that I have learned about to diagnose injury within athletes is the Opto-Jump system. This measures an individuals gate, and by doing so a proper time in which athletes reenter sports can be determined.
Concussions are a tragic occurrence, it is our job as future coaches and educators to be understanding of these situations and try to prevent them from occurring. The more aware we are of this growing problem, the more proactive we can be from having it ever occur in the first place. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Strength Training for Children?

Now everyone knows children lifting weights is bad, right? A child should not exercise until they are far into their teen years that way their growth plates will not become damaged causing their growth to become impeded. Is this not what we have all heard since we were young? For most I would guess this is what you believe to be true. The fact is this is a so called "Urban Legend." The time from which a child is seven years of age all the way up into their early teens is a crucial time for physical development. Strength training during this period can in fact help a child, and increase the likely hood of them being healthier individuals by having a sound mind and body.
A recent study conducted by the MAYO Clinic states that Strength Training(using body weight, and fit bands for exercise), not Weight Lifting is actually good for children to begin doing as early as seven years of age. They list many benefits that one can ascertain from beginning a strength training program at such a young age. If your child is an athlete having stronger muscles means that they will in turn have stronger joints. Having stronger joints means that the risk of sports-related injuries will be significantly less than that of a child who is not on a strength training program. Also if your child is not an athlete their are multiple benefits one can receive from a strength training program. These include of course an increased bone density, rising self esteem due to improved body image, and oddly enough blood pressure and cholesterol control. Now this may spark some individuals as being odd considering the fact that many people relate a good cholesterol and blood pressure level to being cardiovascular fit. In fact though many studies have been performed that show circuit training and vigorous muscular activity helps to improve blood pressure. I actually attended a conference here at Cortland last semester explaining a study that was performed within our facilities based on this question. Now the MAYO Clinic stresses that technique before resistance is a key principle for this program. Also not all children may be ready for this type of responsibility due to the different rates at which all people develop. If proper care is taken before exercise, like performing a dynamic warm up then stretching afterwards in all likelihood no ill effects will be had. Also before starting a strength training program parents should consult a doctor, as well as someone who is properly trained in physical fitness methods. 
Now as a teacher candidate I am quite excited to hear about this study, because I know that I can develop many units around this idea. Strength training is indeed a life long activity because it is a way to stimulate muscular units in a low impact way. This is unlike weight lifting which is done using weights at high impact. Also I know from experience not all children like to perform methods to improve their cardiovascular endurance, so I feel as though strength training can act like a gateway to better overall fitness. As I stated in earlier posts, childhood obesity is a rising problem within the United States. I feel as though this lifelong activity could be one of the many tools we as educators could use to combat this growing epidemic. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Hope for the Future?

One of the number one topics being discussed within the world of health and Physical Education concerning children is the ever climbing number of children who are obese. This is indicated by an individual having a BMI(Body Mass Index) of 30 or more. BMI is calculated by ones height and weight. It is not the most accurate way to attain if one is obese because it does not account for muscle, but it is a baseline with which to start. Obesity among children is a new threat, and with it has come horrifying side effects. Hypertension, arthritis, and diabetes are a few of the side effects that are being seen in children whereas before would not be seen until early adulthood. These are just physical aliments that occur because of obesity. This does not include the psychological damage that is occurring  within these children. Ones body image truly is part of the road to happiness, because a person must be happy with them self before they can be happy elsewhere. It is the first time in history that the expected lifespan of a child is less than that of the previous generation. I feel that this is unacceptable. A nationwide goal has been set in order to combat this alarming news. It is called Healthy People 2020
This organization provides science based goals and objectives that will be instilled during a ten year period in hopes to combat the growing health concern within the United States.Their basic underlying goal is to promote health awareness. This all starts with the children, and it is our job as Physical Educators to give to our students the tools that they need to become healthier individuals. They must be made aware of the importance of a proper diet, and how exercise is important to ones overall physical and mental health. One aspect with in schools I feel should be changed that would help with this goal are the school lunches; they should be healthier, and more nutritious. A healthier brain is a smarter more attentive one. Sadly though I feel this program will not be successful unless the entire nation bands together in a direct unified effort to stop childhood obesity. Physical Education must expand outside of the normal limits pushing towards lifelong fitness and activities. As I have stated before, this is the future of Physical Education, and hopefully through are teachings a generation of lifelong physically educated individuals will arise because of it. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

My Inspiration

It was toward the end of my senior year in High School and I was still unsure as to what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I enjoyed many subjects and to decide on just one path at this time for me was an unsettling topic. I always had a passion for learning new facts, and thanks to my step-father exercise and nutrition were a large part of my life.
I was part of the Varsity Wrestling team at my High School, as well as the teams Captain. My coach that I had was an extremely dedicated individual. He was truly the first person to understand the way in which I thought and learned. He was an individual that expected nothing but respect and determination, and in return he would give the same. I have a father and a step-father, but I would say that he has had almost an equal influence on me as they have. The stories that he would tell me about determination, and over coming obstacles have stood with me all this time. Now as a coach I find myself telling my athletes these same ideas and principles, because I am hoping that these words of wisdom will do the same for them as it has done for me. My senior year of High School I became a Sectional Champion. I remember right after I won I walked over to my coach and said "thank you." This was because he took the time to work with me, staying after practice and coming in before practice to teach with me one on one. His name is Chris VanGorden, and I am truly grateful for the time he took to inspire and teach me. So this is why I decided to get into the field of Physical Education, because I wanted to do the same as he had done for me to others.
So my High School coach was the reason I went into Physical Education, but it was not until I came to Cortland that I learned the true meaning of being a teacher! My first teaching class was when I was introduced to the professor that changed my life. I did not know much about teaching students, and I was quite shy while doing so. He did not give up on me and dismiss me as many people have done in the past, just thinking I was a "brainless jock." He saw in me the potential that I honestly had not yet seen. He worked with me and explained to me the tools that would help me become a successful teacher. I would say that he is the second person in all my years of schooling to understand how I think and learn. This individual is the reason why I am Physical Educator and not just a "gym teacher." His name is Dr. Stephen Yang, and I will always be grateful for what he has done for me.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Teachers, Schools and Society: Ch. 1-2

Teaching entails many many advantages as well as disadvantages. Being a teacher allows one to teach to others the knowledge that they contain to help develop them into a better human being. Also at the same time they themselves learn from the students through the students reactions of their teaching. This allows them to become reflective teachers and help develop a more effective teaching style. Also being a teacher allows for one to feel satisfied and accomplished when lesson is well performed, and learning has taken place. I have already had first hand experience with this during one of my few teaching episodes. During my Adapted Physical Education class I constructed lessons teaching the basic principles of the overhand throw, as well as reading elements. At the end of the year the parent of one of my students was so overwhelmed with joy that I took the time to help her daughter read. I felt so accomplished with myself, because improvement was made. That was the first time I believe I felt like a true teacher. Some drawbacks of being a teacher though can be the lack of respect for your profession. I have found this to be the case with being a Physical Education teacher specifically. I find myself always having to explain how teaching P.E. involves more than just "rolling out the ball." Modern P.E. encompasses multiple subject areas being brought together like art, history, science, and math. These are all brought into a lesson to enhance, and to be taught through the physical! Many though do not understand this. Being a teacher is also a full time job, this is especially so if one is to coach. I have found that out through my own experiences. Coaching entails hours of preparation, and hours of commitment. I feel as though this could be overbearing for some, but the reward of teaching for me is well worth it. 
Teaching in my eyes is most definitely a profession. We provide services to society and individuals by educating students in a multitude of "identified" subject areas. Each of the teachers in these areas possess a unique knowledge and skill. Teachings are standard based, and have a purpose while being in an environment that is controlled and enhanced for the best possible learning. Degrees are needed in order to be successful within this field. Within accomplished programs a trust is given by the public for the confidence and competence in the teachers. Self motivation to strive and become better is present within many teachers. Also beside the standards and schools wishes a teacher is given the flexibility to teach their information in any manner that they feel best suites the student. These are the reasons to why I feel teaching is a profession. 
Teaching started as a type of looked down upon profession. Many people that were teachers were apprentices to master teachers whose skills were not always the best. Most never received secondary schooling. Also in some cases teachers were indentured servants trying to pay off their debt of coming overseas into America. No professional program was present for teachers until 1823 when Reverend Samuel Hall established a school specifically designed for teachers. In 1839 Horace Mann established the first state-supported school for teachers. So now teachers were beginning to become more developed and on their way to being professionals. Many teachers were abused because they were not considered professionals during this time. During the 1950's though the education of teachers developed, and many of these educating schools turned into state colleges. However by 1980 was when the true professionalism in teaching developed. Many reforms were put into place to help improve teacher preparation, and professionalism.
NEA or the National Education Association is the largest professional and employee organization in the nation, and is a political force that tries to have pro-education candidates elected into office. They also consist of over three million members. Another organization, AFT or the American Federation of Teachers consists of over a million members, and basically has the same benefits as NEA. AFT is for standard based teaching, and beginning teachers to work with mater teachers in almost an apprenticeship type of learning. This book though brings up a good point as to how unions can cause unnecessary conflict between administration and teachers. Also I do not feel as though salary should be put before the students well being. Teaching in all reality is a selfless occupation. 
As I stated before I believe a teacher should be selfless, and put the well being of the student above all else. They should always strive to better themselves through reflective thinking and always try and search for a more effective teaching method. A teacher should try and incorporate all areas of learning to help in developing  a student into a more well-rounded individual. They should follow the standards placed upon them, and do everything in their power to apply this in all of their teaching. Teaching I feel is a good fit for me because I believe in these words, and I want to help and educate others. 

Peering into the Cutting Edge

Since sport began thousands of years ago human beings have always tried to find ways to gain an edge over their competitors. They have done this in many ways over multiple areas. When thinking of an athlete trying to "enhance" their performance the mind of the average person usually goes straight to that of increasing muscle size through an illegal method, (anabolic steroids). Also possibly that of an individual taking a stimulant to increase reaction time within their mind and body. People are naturally driven towards this negative type of assumptions, almost similar to how a new teacher only gives attention to negative behavior in the classroom and neglects the positives. Now though through a technological breakthrough one can enhance themselves in the world of sport. No, I am not talking about how the "Six Million Dollar Man" increased his physique, but by using technology while training to enhance how one plays during a game. Does this sound like science fiction? Well it seems as though it is science fact. 
Allen Reichow, Nike's "Director of Sensory Performance and Vision," has developed a new type of training tool that can significantly improve ones performance by simply just putting on a pair of glasses. These glasses oddly enough do not improve ones sight, but in fact limits it. What Reichow has found is that by taking away certain ares of vision during practice increases the bodies ability to interpret data with the little vision it has left. So when these glasses are taken off and vision is restored to full capacity the user is able to see objects and actions with better speed and accuracy. This is done by having the glasses the user is wearing become blurred in some areas, but stay normal in others. The area that is blurred can change depending on the program the athlete is training on and it is controlled by a small localized computer within the glasses them self. This technology has been around for years in the form of LCD televisions, but was never small, or malleable enough to put into an object like a pair of glasses. As for now this technology has only found its way into the sport of football, only being used by top NFL athletes. The possibilities of this technology though can be limitless. 
This ability to enhance oneself through technology is the most likely future of sports training. I enjoy technology, and I strongly encourage its use within Physical Education. I fear though a time when technologies use within sports causes a divide in athletes. When the only people that can compete in sports are the ones that can afford its use. As of now though technology has not progressed that far and it is only being used as an aid in training which I feel is amazing, but the day when it becomes the substitute of hard work is the one I fear. 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Outlawing Sportsmanship?

As many of you know by read my postings I have recently become an Assistant Coach to a High School Wrestling team. Within our athletes the Head Coach and I try and instill respect, and self confidence. Whenever we face an opponent during competition, or are hosted by a school district for a tournament we instruct our athletes to go and thank the opposing team for their hospitality. Naturally with this gesture of gratitude a hand shake is exchanged. This act was instilled within me at a young age growing up in the sporting world, so naturally this idea has been passed down to our wrestlers.
However at our most recent meet an alarming statement was made by the officiating referee. He specifically instructed the coaching staff, and the athletes that no shaking of the hands would be permitted during the event. I was shocked by this statement, but respectfully I followed the wishes of the official. At the next meet this same statement was brought up, but by a different officiating referee. At first I believed this rule to be just the personal preference of the official the week prior, but now two individuals have given the same statement! In my mind their must be a larger reasoning behind all of this. At first no one would elaborate on this negativity towards sportsmanship, as though it was a taboo subject. It was not until after the meet when I was able to talk with an official on a one on one basis that he explained to me this "secret agenda."
The NYSPHSAA or the "New York State Public High School Athletic Associations" states that "The promoting of sportsmanship is a major goal." However I was told secretly that this instruction of not to shake the hand of an opponent came directly from the State. The reason behind this was somewhat alarming. Skin infections are a common occurance in wrestling due to the nature of the sport. People are competing within close proximity of one another on a surface that has questionable sanitary properties. Minor infections like that of ringworm and impetigo are common place. These can be easily treated, and if proper hygiene is used avoided completely. However serious infections like herpes gladiatorium, and MRSA can occur. These infections can threaten the health of an individual drastically, and in the case of herpes gladiatorium can never be cured. This I was told was the reasoning why unnecessary physical contact has been outlawed in High School Wrestling. The State of New York I have been told will never come forward publicly with this statement, because of how it presents a negative shadow over sportsmanship. I am worried though as to how this will impact the student athletes. Essentially they are being told it is alright to not show sportsmanship. That to me is unacceptable.
In my eyes another way to over come this fear must be found. Skin infection has always been in wrestling, and wrestling is one of the oldest sports known. I fear for the lessons that these athletes are learning from this new rule. I hope that it will not impact them for the worse.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Developing Philosophy

As promised I am now going to elaborate on my developing philosophy that pertains to education and coaching.
Last year was a dark year for me. My philosophies on teaching I feel were skewed by the anger I held within my self due to the injury I received during wrestling here at Cortland. At the time I felt as though my life had been ruined, and that I would never recovery from the traumatic brain injury I had acquired. My feeling towards sports within Physical Education declined, in fact I did not believe that it was an important part in any respect to P.E. I strongly voiced my opinion to all that would listen. I felt as though I had a solid argument towards disbelievers. I just did not want what happened to me to happen to anyone else. I would not wish that pain on anyone. I stuck to this belief up until I began to coach wrestling this past winter.
What I have noticed is that how you train an individual in a sport can have an impact on how they carry themselves outside of that sport, for example in regular schooling. The Head Coach and I instill respect into our athletes, not only to be directed toward us and their teammates, but to have pride and respect for oneself. We have had many teachers come up to us and tell us how these students that are our wrestlers have changed drastically in their demeanor. This change has been for the better! Grades are improving, and class interruption by certain individuals has ceased. I truly feel as though this is due to our teaching. So in short I believe that teaching respect through the physical within sport can have a positive impact on the learner. I still strongly believe in lifelong fitness and its large importance in the future of the Physical Education curriculum, but sports I now understand can play an important role as well. My developing philosophy I feel shows that I am a reflective teacher, and am always learning from what I do. This I feel is the only true road to success. One must see what they have done, take the positive and the negative and then strive to make them self better.
I hope that my teaching is an inspiration to individuals, causing a change within themselves for the better. That I can instill within them the self confidence and knowledge to help them to become a healthy and confident individual.
I believe that all children can be reached, and that no child should be left behind for any reason. Everyone can be taught, it is just a matter of how they learn, and how the teacher presents the knowledge to them.
I will do everything within my power to pass on the knowledge that I have to my students. The knowledge that I hold can change them for the better. It can help them grow into a respectful confident individual. I will teach through the physical and try my best to reach everyone that I teach.
This is my oath to all.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Hello Again!

Hello everyone! It has been too long since my last blog. I have done much in this time with regards to my life, and professional development. My philosophies of teaching have developed as well due to the many experiences I have had during this time. I will elaborate further on these in upcoming blogs.
So lets begin where I left off. Last Spring I left my 255 class with a wealth of knowledge, eagerly awaiting my 256 placement at the Victor School District. I was somewhat nervous, but confident in my ability to utilize the tools taught to me by my 255 instructor Dr. Stephen Yang. My time at Victor was amazing. I was fortunate enough to be placed in an amazing program, with some amazing teachers. I absorbed all that I could during my time there. I wanted to learn as much as I could about their teaching philosophies, and curriculum guidelines, so that some day I too will be able to develop an outstanding Physical Education Program like that of which I saw at the Victor School District!
School began that fall again for me. I had finally gotten over my injury that plagued me for almost six months prior. I was finally able to be me again, and I wanted to show everyone my true abilities now that I could function without becoming ill. I decided to focus much of my ability into my teaching classes like that of Early Childhood, an Adapted Physical Education. I used every skill that was taught to me during 255, and what I learned during my 256 experience and focused that into every lesson I taught. I thought that I had a fairly basic understanding of teaching at this time, but what I learned from true first hand experience with students was amazing. I was able to develop my ability to converse with students, and how to convey the message that I was trying to teach. I feel as though this is a crucial part of teaching that many people lack, and can only be gained through experience. Towards the middle of the semester I re-injured myself, and it took a toll on me not only mentally and emotionally, but physically as well. I had to find a strength in myself to keep moving forward, not for me, but for my students. I owed it to them to push through any pain, or sickness I may have felt. In the end everything worked out, and I feel as though what I learned from this experience will be with me form the rest of my teaching career, and life.
This past winter I was given a chance to coach High School Wrestling. I jumped on this opportunity, not for any personal gain, like that of a "resume builder," but for the opportunity to help others. To spread my knowledge that I had worked so hard to accumulate during my time, and pass that on to another hopefully impacting them for the better. I have always stressed that one must "Teach Like a Superhero." I have been saying this without fully understanding the meaning. Now though I believe I understand. To be a Hero one must be selfless, courageous, and strive to help others no matter what. To be a true teacher one must do everything in their power to help a child succeed, they are there to be the support a child, helping them to develop into a better human being. Every action that is taken is not for personal glory, but for the betterment of the program, and its  ability to better facilitate the child's development. I feel as though the world has become too overwhelmed with individuals wanting to make a name for themselves, and use others for their own personal gain. How is any progression suppose to be made as a group when society is made of all individuals? This is the question that I wonder. I feel as though the world needs more heroes in it in order to succeed. Even the small things count, everything adds up.
Everyday we talk to people and have conversations with one another. Some of these conversations we may not even remember. Just try not to forget this. The words you say could stick with someone, and grow to define them as a person. That makes you their hero in a way. Try and become someones hero! That is my message I spread to you.