Team Teaching – The Future of Education

Team teaching, what’s that?


Technically, this is when teachers work together with equal responsibilities concerning classroom management, planning, teaching, and assessing.

Teaching Partner

This semester I’ve had the awesome opportunity to work with a colleague in a team teach situation. This happened just by chance. Our normal class sizes are 45-50 students per class, but somehow our 5th-period class rosters were really low.  She was scheduled 11 students and I was scheduled 20 students. We thought this would be a great time to learn from each other and give our students the best of each of us.

This is Leslie!leslie-circle

She is the wonderful educator I have the pleasure of working with this year during 5th period. She brings a totally different viewpoint and strengths to physical education than I have. She truly sees each child as individual, wants to make sure every student succeeds, and brings a perspective to teaching that a lot of our students have.


We knew from the beginning that it would take a lot of communication and give and take on both our parts. We’ve both been teaching for a long time and are not used to sharing students and lessons. True team teaching is hard work, but truly a learning experience for both us and the students.

It’s obvious the more effort you put into planning, deciding who’s teaching what, the better the lesson and learning will be. We have had some lessons that we planned way in advanced and other lessons that were planned an hour before the class.


What we called a lot of communication wasn’t enough. We could tell from facial expressions, body language, and amount of talking when one of us wasn’t happy with what was going on.

I know from my side of the team, I have to get out of the way a little more. I don’t know everything and there are areas where Leslie is a lot stronger and I need to let her go so the students can benefit.

I know that there have been times when I’ve been a little too pushy and I need to listen better.

The Future

For second semester we are going to do our best to plan together better. We know with better planning more learning will take place. For both the students and us.

I’ve also been thinking about trying to team teach with our other teaching partner. I think it would be a great experience for us all.


Have you ever been in a team teaching situation? How did it go? What strategies did you have in place to make sure that there was equal planning, teaching, and assessing?

We really want to hear your thoughts!


Physical Education – Where Mind and Body Come Together!


Where did you come from? Where are you going?

Today I want to give you the background behind Mr. Physical Education and why I started it.


At the beginning of my career I taught at a couple of different schools. At each school I was the only one in my department. I was young and I knew how to use the internet to look up resources to use in my classes. I also had a lot of my own ideas coming right out of college. What I didn’t realize though was the culture of each school. One school was a small country school. The other was a private Catholic school. Both schools had huge parent involvement and the students were incredible. I was able to teach whatever I wanted with no complaints from the students. It was like teaching in a lab school. I was allowed to take risks and fail and start again.

I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was developing an ego. I truly thought I was the best physical education teacher in the nation. I thought this because I knew what I was doing and I knew what a lot of other physical educators were doing. I was not just “rolling out the ball”. Most of the people I knew were.

After almost a decade of teaching in Missouri I had the opportunity to move to Los Angeles. The school that hired me pumped up my ego even more. Of course, they didn’t know this. They hired me from an over the phone interview and told me they were hiring me to be the department chair of a 10 teacher department.


Once I got to my new school I saw a lot more of the same. Teachers rolling out the ball. There was one teacher though doing things I had never seen done before. His lessons were awesome! His students were engaged. Learning was taking place and he was incorporating technology like I’ve never seen before. I started to figure out that I might not be as good as I thought.

I learned a lot from this teacher. Unfortunately he was displaced to a different school. I had to figure out how to continue growing on my own.

I truly believe I was a good teacher, but I wanted to get better. I wanted to be great! I wanted to have the impact on my students that I saw from my colleague.


Somehow I stumbled onto Twitter which led me into reading blogs then writing a blog. I was also encouraged to join Voxer and start listening to podcasts. Then I thought to myself, “If I’m in this situation, there are probably others”. I’m sure there are those who want to be better, but don’t know where to start. I want to be able to help those teachers who are looking to become better. I want to get them on the right track right away. They shouldn’t have to stumble around wondering if what they are doing is leading them to where they want to be.


The hero of my story is the teacher who wants to be better, but is not sure how to get there. They start their journey by going to college and receiving their credential. From there they get their first teaching position and they are doing an ok job. Maybe even above average. They know there is a better place for them to be in as a teacher. Unfortunately there’s no help in sight. Mentor teachers and administration are not able or willing to give this teacher the tools they need to improve.

After awhile the frustration drives them to do something for themselves. The only thing they know to do is to go to Google and research topics to make them better than they are now, but maybe not as good as they could be because they don’t know exactly what to look for.

If this teacher is lucky they’ll find a blog or lesson that will inspire them and they think they are going in the right direction. The research is just so time consuming and the high quality resources they are looking for are few and far between. Eventually they will give up and believe they must be doing as good as every other teacher in the nation. Maybe even be one of the best.


What Mr. Physical Education has to offer is a one-stop shop for teachers that want to be better. We have resources in the form of blogs, videos, podcasts, and different personal learning network (PLN) challenges. We have a personal touch. If you ask a question it gets answered. If we don’t have an answer we’ll get an answer for you. We also know we are not the only place for great resources and can direct you to a place to help you get what you need.

At Mr. Physical Education we allow our fans to learn and grow in a small intimate community where people get to know each other and can rely on their new found colleagues and friends. Our fans have had a chance to find what they need to become the teacher they want to be.

Our fans can describe success as taking their professional development into their own hands and having confidence that they know how to become the best they can be for their students.

So, what does Mr. Physical Education have to offer?

We have a lot to offer, honesty, integrity, respect, and commitment. I think the content and resources I’ve been sharing shows that I’m not a “super teacher” that has always or even now has everything together. I’m still learning and growing, trying to get better. I’m right ahead of some and right behind others. I ask a lot of questions and get to answer a lot questions. If you want someone on your side when it comes to becoming a better teacher and human being. We have your back.

I see Mr. Physical Education changing how teachers perceive what level of teaching they are at. I think a lot of teachers have a ton of knowledge about good pedagogy, but don’t understand how to implement what they know. I think physical education teachers don’t realize how hard good teaching really is. I want to resource and inspire teachers. I want it to be easy for teachers to find all the tools they need all in one place or be directed where to go to get what they need. I don’t want teachers to struggle to find high quality tools.
Our students need us to be the best we can be!


Teacher or Leader?

Which one are you?



Picture by: Carol S. Dweck

Typical Social Media Savvy Educator:                     Growth Mind-Set

Typical Non-Social Media Savvy Educator:           Fixed Mind-Set

What I see

I see people on social media all the time talking about blogs they’ve read, articles they’ve written, podcast they’ve listened to, and conferences they’ve attended. All of this is great! I wonder how people go about growing their departments or is it all about self growth? I know I do everything I can to be a better teacher and give my students the education they deserve. 

I think everyone on social media is a lot like me. We want to be better! 

My question is this, “Is it all about us”? 

After we grow to a certain level, should our responsibility be to grow and develop the people in our department? Do we simply let them flounder around? I believe that as we learn and grow we need to not only become better teachers we need to become leaders.


Leaders are influencers!

We need to lead our departments by example. We need to suggest the blogs, podcast, articles, and conferences that we use to grow, to our colleagues.

I know we can’t change people, we can only change ourselves. I also know we cannot stand idly by and let students get ripped off. We need to move beyond teacher to leader.

Leaders do more than just make themselves better they make the people around them better. What are you doing to make the people around you better? All of us on social media are leaders! We are out front doing things that the everyday educator isn’t doing. 


Something that I like to do and it seems to be effective for me, maybe it’s my personality, is to ask questions. If I see a colleague do something I will ask them about it. Then I might ask them if they have tried it this way before instead and give them a little hint of how I do it. It’s called being collegial. Finally,  I go back and complement what they are doing if a compliment is deserved. Most of the time I can find a little something right in everything. 

People don’t want to be looked down upon. They want to know what they are doing is impacting lives as well. Of course there’s always going to be those extreme cases where people are happy doing what they’ve always done. Most people I know, I bet most people you know, want to have their life matter. Most people get into education for that reason alone. They want to be influencers.

What’s another name for influencer? LEADER!!

As the quote by John Maxwell goes, “People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care”.

Show the people in your department and school that you care about them. Become friends. Speak into their lives. Let them speak into yours!


1. Go beyond teacher to leader. 

2. Lead by example.

3. Never give up.

4. Give compliments.

5. Advocate for students.

What do you think? Am I right? Comment below. Share if you think I have a point.

 Physical Education: Where Mind and Body come Together!


Wow, Wow, Wow!!

Have you ever been so inspired?

npessi-logo1This past week I had the incredible opportunity to attend the National PE Institute in Ashville, North Carolina. All I have to say is wow!

I’ve gone to conferences and workshops in the past that have been great, but this conference was different. It was less about the workshops that were offered and more about the community of learners that was in attendance. Artie Kamiya and his team have discovered how to provide what physical educators really need, purpose, motivation, and FAMILY!

This conference had workshops just like all other conferences. The workshops that were offered though were definitely different. All of the workshops were student centered and standards based. None of the workshops were teaching new games just to be able to offer new games to your students. Every game had a true learning purpose.


podiumThere were also 5 AMAZING keynotes: Sarah Gietschier-Hartman, Dr. Greg Dale, Dr. Martha James-Hassan, Jo Bailey, and Naomi Hartl. 

It was inspiring to see how all of the keynotes messages related together and they didn’t even get together to prepare. The message of the keynotes seemed to be UNITY and MOVING the profession forward.

I took from their talks that physical educators need to come together and start doing what’s best for students and making a positive change in our pedagogy. If we do these plus all the hard work behind the scenes we will be as accepted as any other content area.


workshopI also went to some amazing sessions.

I’ve been wanting to try to figure out how to incorporate nutrition into my movement classes. In California our physical education standards don’t include any health or nutrition. Alex O’Brien had a fun and fabulous workshop called “Nutrition with a Mission”. He gave me several ideas how I can do exactly what I’ve been trying to do for awhile.

Here lately I’ve been studying a lot about Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU). Sarah G-H and Seth Martin had a great session showing how to use world games in the TGfU model. They called it TWGfU and made us all realize that all games are world games.

Along with the TWGfU Sarah also hosted a session called “Ki-O-Rahi”. This is a fun new world invasion game. Sarah broke it down into layers and let us play. Definitely a game I’m going to use in my invasion games unit.

Jo Bailey presented a breakout called “10×10: Community, Cohesion, and Cognition”. Basically she was showing us how she helps the students in her classes build relationships with each other and how she gets to know each one of her students on a personal level.

I was hit right between the eyes with this lesson. She was telling us how she has had students in her class not know each other by the end of the semester. I have the same situation only worse. My students are with me the entire year and there are some that don’t even get to know all of their classmates names. I came away with several ideas on how to overcome this.

The last session I attended was all about standards based instruction and assessment by Adam Metcalf and David Gusitsch. This was a great reminder for me to keep going in the direction I’m going and how to streamline grading during class.


Overall this convention was world class! I would recommend it to any physical education teacher, health educator, or administrator in charge of physical education. I know I plan on going back!

Remember to leave a comment below to further the discussion!


Really?! Not Again!

It’s been a really long time since I thought this…

Where I Came From

you are here15 years ago teaching in a Catholic school in Missouri. 100% parent participation. Absolutely no behavior problems. Seeing real learning taking place.

This was all before the world became small with social media. I was big headed enough to believe I was the best physical education teacher in the world. Pretty arrogant, huh?

I’ve grown up since then and have found out what the difference is between good and great teaching. I put myself at the bottom of the good category watching and learning from all those great teachers on Twitter and Voxer.


What have I learned over the years?

  1. Don’t get too big for your britches – someone will always put you in your place.
  2. Work with others (virtually or in person) is better than working by yourself.
  3. Never quit learning – if you’re not going forward you are going backward.
  4. The world is bigger than you do something that will impact the life of another.
  5. Always search for truth and live by it


I’ve discovered that I’m not making my teaching real for my students. I use all these wonderful models in my classes. Things like TGfU, Sport Ed Model, SOLO Taxonomy, and others. Students are learning, but are they making the connection to life. Am I really doing justice for my students?

My students can tell me what I want them to know, but are they applying it to there life? Will they remember what they learned after they leave my class?

These thoughts make me want to change what I am doing again. Like I did about 5 years ago.


IMG_0014Well most of you don’t know this. My wife, Shannon, is getting her teaching credential to become a physical education teacher. Every once in awhile she’ll ask for advice on one of her college assignments. I’ll do the best I can to help her out.

So, one thing I’ve made sure to do is to introduce her to the TGfU model. After know her for 25 years I knew that this would be very beneficial for her style of teaching. She has taught before, just not in the public school setting.

The first thing I did was to show her the #physedagogy video with Mel Hamada teaching about TGfU. If you haven’t watched it yet you should. It will change how you teach.

Shannon wrote a very detailed lesson plan for one of her classes. She based the lesson off of what she learned from Mel’s video plus added some of her own creative activities to the lesson. I was probably the best lesson I’ve ever seen that connect what we do in the gym to real life.


How have I not seen how to do this in my own teaching? I’ve only been doing this thing for 20 years.

This summer is going to be busy with changing pretty much everything I do. My goal is to make sure I put my students first, not fancy teaching models or technology or new fangled assessment methods.



The Conference and Workshop Blues – How to Keep the Hype!

Here are some easy steps to keep the hype.


Every year most states, if not all, states have a weekend long physical education conference. In these conferences you get to see keynote speakers and awesome workshop leaders. By the end of the weekend everyone is pumped up, ready to go back to their schools, and teach like they’ve never taught before.


You’ve learned all these new great skills and you want to implement them into your classes right away. This is great!

It is awesome to see teachers going to conferences learning and trying new activities in their classes, but what happens when the conference is over? You’re 3, 4, 5, 6 weeks past the conference and things start going back to normal. What can you do to keep the hype? What can you do to not get the workshop blues?



This is a great question for all of us! I even have the workshop blues this year. That’s mainly because I didn’t get to go to my state’s annual conference. So what do you do? This is where your personal learning network (PLN) comes into play.


Hopefully you have a person or two in your PLN that are in the same state as you. They may be even went to the conference that you went to. You got to meet your PL in member in person for the first time. If you are able to connect and share and collaborate with your PLN post conference, that hype that you came away from the conference with will hopefully not disappear.

Even if the members of your PLN are not in your state or did not go to the same conference as you, you can still debrief with them about it. Tell them the highlights. Tell them the things that you heard that you didn’t quite agree with. Anything that can help you grow is shareable.

I know throughout the years I have learned things from teachers that I thought were excellent teachers and I’ve learned things from teachers who do things a little different than I do. You have to think back to that conference, take that one big idea that you really learned, and implement it.

Like I’ve said in a previous post, don’t try to do too much all at once, you’ll get overwhelmed. Then like a lot of people, you may even give up. And that’s what we don’t want to have happen. You have to be proactive in finding that next mountaintop experience.


From conference to conference and in between conferences you are on Twitter, Voxer, reading blogs, and listening to podcasts.

twitter       voxer logo       blog       podcast-image

You are connecting with your PLN whether it’s through telephone calls, emails, Google hangouts, conference calls, whatever it might be to keep that fire going. After conferences and in between workshops, that is where your PLN is crucial.

These are the people who keep you motivated. Who keep you accountable. Who encourage you! This is why it’s so important to build your PLN.

I hope everyone at CAHPERD had a great time this last weekend. And I can’t wait for San Diego next year!


If you want to learn how to build your PLN check out these blog posts; Taking thing into your own hand!, Are you serious?! Why should I do that?, My phone can do that?, Blog, blog, blog!, and Have you ever heard anything like this before?.


PLN Wrap-Up

A great way to end things…

Over the past several weeks I have shown you for tools to help you grow your personal learning network (PLN).

twitter     voxer logo     blog     podcast-image

Quick Reflection

This has been a great learning experience for myself as well! I have gone on a personal journey, discovering how I have really learned and grown as a professional. These tools have become a part of me. When I have an extra minute I just turn to one of them and the learning starts.


I hope over these past several weeks that you have been able to put some tools in your tool belt as well. I, especially, hope you are implementing these tools at a slow and manageable rate. I don’t want you to get overwhelmed. I want to see you growing professionally and personally as well.

My Writing

This series has been my best series of blogs that I have written over the past year and a half. I’ve had more interaction more sharing and more compliments than before. Because of all of the great comments I will be putting the finishing touches on an e-book that will be free that goes over these tools and much much more on growing your PLN. So be on the lookout for that!


If this series has helped you grow in your professional journey I would just ask that you would share this content with colleagues and friends who are beginning their learning journey as well. I want to see as many people as possible getting better at their craft, teaching.


After writing this series of blog post I really and truly believe that I have been able to define exactly what it is I am supposed to do in education. I believe that I am supposed to resource educators. One thing that I have done over the past few days for high school physical education teachers in California specifically is created a standards bass lesson planner that high school course one in high school course two teachers can use to create their lesson plans. Is available right here if you just click on the link. I based this Google form off of the one that was created by Justin schleider out of New Jersey. His lesson planner is based off of the national standards for those of you who do not have state standards.


Blog, Blog, Blog!

I bet you’ve never read anything like this before…

There’s so much information in the world today, it’s very hard to determine what is good and what is not.

There are so many people in the blogosphere that claim to be experts in their given content, so you have to be good at telling the bad from the good and the good from the great!

We are in week three of developing our Personal Learning Network (PLN). This week we will show you how to pick the right blog(s) for you to read and give you a few good ones to begin with.

I’m also going to share with you my favorite app to organize the blogs I follow into one nice, neat, place.

What’s a blog?

A blog is a short piece of written content. People use blogs to provide information and to sell products. It’s usually written by individuals or companies and in normally written in conversational style. They are usually updated very quickly.



Why should you read a blog?

Blogs should be read because they are fairly short reads and packed full of content. Blogs can be read pretty much anywhere:

  • In line
  • On your conference period
  • In department meetings (to discuss the content)
  • At home
  • On your computer
  • On your tablet or phone


Mr. Physical Education                                 Drowning in the Shallow

The P.E. Geek                                       

The Physical Educator                                  PYP PE with Andy

Brilliant or Insane                                          Mel Hamada

PHYSEDAGOGY                                              PE4Learning

Move Live Learn                                            Physed Review

Mr. Metcalf PE                                               Fit2Be Smart

These are some of the best in the field of physical education. If you need help finding one in your area of content let me know! I’ll find a good one for you.

I encourage you take a look at all of these different blogs. There is so much to be learned by these educators who have been teaching for a long time and sharing for  a long time.

Don’t forget!

To keep up with these blogs it is very respectful to subscribe. Plus, if you subscribe you will be alerted to when the next blog is available by email.


Also, a lot of bloggers give out extra incentives to subscribe and subscribers are also given extra content for being loyal. Bloggers may produce email or video courses, ebooks, and other downloadables for their subscribers.

Now I know you can’t subscribe to everyone and I don’t expect you to, but for your favorites I highly recommend it.

Keeping up

I do want to show you an incredible little app that I love to keep track of all of my blogs. It’s app that keeps them all in the same place and makes it incredibly easy to look for updates.

The app is called Feedly.



Give it a try!


I not only want to encourage you to read blogs, but I want to inspire you to write a blog. So many bloggers start out by blogging just for themselves as a way to reflect and share what they are doing in their classes.

Reflecting is a great thing that all teachers should be doing. I know most of us do reflect in our minds, but it’s much more powerful and life changing if you write it down and get feedback from your PLN.

I dare you to leave a comment. Tell me which blogs you read and tell me the link to your blog so I can subscribe to you.

If this inspired you to give reading blogs a chance feel free to share this post with someone else who could benefit!


Remember: Physical Education – Where Mind and Body Come Together!


My phone can do that?

Have you ever had a conversation with 30 people at the same time on your phone? Look at this…

Last week I ranted and raved about how good Twitter was. It still is great. I love it! It’s really my to go to social media site for professional development. But guess what boys and girls? Twitter has a big brother and it’s name is a Voxer.

voxer logo


Voxer can do everything that Twitter can do, but there’s a cool twist. You get to actually hear the voice of the teachers that you have been collaborating with on Twitter. Also, you’re NOT limited to 140 characters. You can talk pretty much as long as you want. But there are unsaid Voxer rules. No one wants to really listen to a 10 to 20 minute vox. So we try to keep them to 2 to 5 minutes at the max.

Voxer is a different kind of beast. You can get into several different Voxer groups. Such as:

  • secondary education
  • elementary physical education
  • Google Classroom
  • standards-based grading
  • SOLO taxonomy
  • general PE group
  • Hack Learning

I’m sure I’m missing some. There are groups for pretty much every content area.

Outside the group

You can also do what they call a side-vox. This is basically when you want to go more in-depth with a single person from a group about a certain topic or lesson and you just want to vox them alone, one-on-one outside of the group.

The craziness of Voxer

Being in Voxer can be very overwhelming at first, especially if you’re in a lot of groups. If you miss a day or two you could easily be a couple hundred voxes behind.

I know when I first joined Voxer it made me want to quit. I wanted to hear the whole conversation, but I just didn’t have the time. I had to learn to just join in where the chat was at and go on from there.

Response time

One of the nice things about Voxer is that it seems people respond a little quicker then they do on Twitter. I think this is because people have their phones on them and they can just throw out a quick message whether they’re in between classes, in the gym, or whenever they have a free moment.

Your phone is basically turned into a  supercharged walkie-talkie.

How to sign-up

The screen shots I’m going to show you are from a phone since this is the main way you will use Voxer. There is  a desk top version which allows for a few extra options, but using only your phone works just fine.

1. Download the Voxer app from either the app store or Google Play.


2. Here’s what the app looks like from the front.


3. Allow Voxer to access your microphone.


4. Then sign up.

IMG_1519                             IMG_1520

click “create account” after filling out all of the information.

5. You can set up alerts if you would like.

6. Next you can setup your profile by uploading a picture and customizing your username.


7.Your opening screen should look like this. The Voxer people have left you your first three voxes.


How to get into physical education Voxer groups

The best way to find all of the physical education Voxer groups is to use this QR codes created by Spencer Barfuss @physed on Twitter. His website is After you have the Voxer app on your phone all you have to do is scan the QR code with your phone and you are pretty much added automatically.

Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.32.05 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.31.49 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.31.35 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.31.17 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.31.05 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.30.53 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.30.34 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.30.08 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.29.51 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.29.32 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.29.08 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.28.50 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.28.26 PM     Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 7.28.00 PM

Closing things up

Turning your phone into a walkie talkie is the cool thing to do! I highly suggest you get involved with one Voxer group to start out. Get a handle on it. Then join another.

If you were encouraged to join or you know someone who would be interested, please share this with them. 

Make sure to comment below to tell me about your Voxer experiences. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Remember: Physical Education – Where Mind and Body Come Together!



Taking things into your own hands!

Mindless meetings! Required attendance! No relevance! Take professional learning into your own hands.


Do you have a vision for your professional learning?

I know I sure do! I’m on a quest. Not only do I want to become better at my craft, but I want to inspire and encourage others to be their best as well.

My dream is to teach teachers, to teach leaders, to teach people who want to grow! Most teachers these days love teaching for the fact they get to see those ‘aha’ moments in their students eyes.


I get that same joy, in my heart, when I am able to help a teacher experience that same type of learning. It’s great to get opportunities to help a teacher learn a new concept or show them how to use a new ed. tech. tool. When their eyes light up, it’s amazing!

What made me this way?

As I think back to when I was in school I remember the teachers that I had.

  • Mrs. Cunningham
  • Mr. Hart
  • Mr. Jones
  • Miss Behrens
  • Mr. Swift
  • Coach Shaw
  • Mrs. Walsworth

and many more.

Whenever I would learn a new concept, a new Spanish word, or learn how to develop a picture in the darkroom, or run a faster time in the mile, my teacher’s faces would beam. I want to give that same joy to teachers.

Research has shown that teachers need continuous learning opportunities to stay on the cutting edge of education in order to keep our students learning at the same pace as the rest of the world.

As teachers we should be a learning, growing, and developing each and every day.

We need to be setting the example for our students. If we expect them to learn new, difficult content, then we should be as well.

My goal

My dream, is to resource, mentor, provide staff development at schools, lead workshops, and be a keynote speaker.

I have an unusually tough vision to reach though. I don’t want to necessarily reach those who are already on the right track. Those people who are already in their own personal learning that works(PLN’s). If they want to learn from me thought I won’t deny them.

I want to reach those who think they “know it all” already. Or those who don’t realize what they’re doing just isn’t as good as it could be.

I don’t have these goals to make myself look good. I just want to reach the hard to reach teachers and help them grow and get better. I know from experience that someone has to be out there to help those teachers.

I was once a teacher who thought I was doing all the right things. I thought I was the best physical education teacher in the world. I thought too highly of myself.


Then I found this awesome little thing called Twitter and saw that there are thousands of teachers just rockin’ it in the education world and kicking my butt!

Since my goal is to make teachers better, I have to share what made my professional growth journey take off and lead me in the direction I am in now.

The most influential thing in my life as a teacher has been my Personal Learning Network (PLN).


This is the beginning of a series. “How to Develop your PLN”.

You’re going to learn the importance of your Twitter account. Then explore it’s big brother Voxer. Next I’ll talk about how to find quality blogs to read and podcasts to listen to.

So we don’t get overwhelmed, we will take this step-by-step, inch by inch, and make it as painless as possible.

After we discover how to develop our PLN we will apply those principles to our learning and growth and put them into action so you can become the best teacher that you can be.

I dare you to come on this trek with me. If you know someone who might benefit from this please pass it along.

What do you do for your own professional development? Why did you choose your path?

Remember: Physical Education – Where Mind and Body Come Together!


The Professional Thief

You won’t believe what I stole…

When I was 11 or 12 years old my step-brother and I were in a grocery store near the apartment where we lived. I can’t remember the reason for going there, but he dared me to take something. I didn’t really want to, but he was really pressuring me.

So, I thought to myself, “How am I going to do this”? I noticed I had sweat pants on and we were in the hygiene isle. I looked around and grabbed a bar of soap and dropped it down the leg of my sweat pants. I knew it wouldn’t fall out because of the elastic at the bottom.

I couldn’t get out of the store quick enough. Looking back I still can’t believe I did this, but I just had to come clean with you.

What does this have to do with education? Let’s take a look.

Over the past few months I’ve come to find that I’m different than those I try to emulate my teaching after. I try to create the awesome lesson ideas that they do and I find that I get very frustrated with myself.

It’s easy to get frustrated when you compare yourself to those you look up to. You need to remember that you have a special gift that is only yours. Find out what that is and run with it. You will be happier and your students will benefit.

The people I enjoy following on Twitter and reading their blogs are the “rock stars” of the profession right now:

andy vasily 2     jo bailey 2     adam llevo 2     joey feith 2     nathan horne 2

Andy Vasily                Jo Bailey                Adam Llevo             Joey Feith             Nathan Horne

These people are innovators and creators in the physical education world. I admire them for what they are doing!

I’ve discovered though that I may be the best thief in physical education. You see, I don’t necessarily conceive new innovative, creative, awe inspiring teaching methods, lesson ideas, or tech tricks, but I can implement like nobodies business  and get others to do the same.

Look at what I have stolen:


    • character education cards from Andy Vasily


    • Jo Bailey encouraged me to become a Google Certified educator


    • Adam Llevo inspired me to actually implement SOLO Taxonomy and some tech ideas into my arsenal of tools


    • Joey Feith introduced me to Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU)


  • My questioning ability has greatly improved by listening to Nathan Horne.

I’ve become more bold over the last two years because of the influence of these great educators.

In the first semester of this school year I have:

1. provided professional development to my department
 a. We no longer grade according to dressing out, participation, and behavior.
 b. We have started using standards based instruction and grading.
 c. We plan together.
 d. We waist no time in class since we started using instant activities in class.
2. provided professional development to my entire school staff
 a. Google Classroom introduction
 b. I was able to show the benefit of student led conferences and we will be using this model school wide in the spring.

So, what am I trying to say?

There is more than one way to be an effective teacher. You can create, innovate, imitate, or even misappropriate.

The most important thing is that you find the style that works for you and you do what’s best for your students. You can’t go wrong with that.

Have you been an idea thief before?

Let us know in the comments what you “stole”. If you know someone who has “stolen” a resource or an idea share this with them to get them involved in the conversation.

I always teach that the comments is where the real learning takes place.

Physical Education – Where Mind and Body Come Together!


The First Week!

This was a great beginning to the start of the 2015-16 school year. A great first week. At my high school we are on a block schedule so we were able to see all of our students three times this week. I know we are still in the honeymoon phase, but my classes were really great! Let me give a recap.


Day 1:

The students came into the gym, found their name on the class roster so they could see what there number was. Once they found their number they went to a table to pick up a reflection/expectation sheet, go to their number have a seat, and work on the paper until all the students had arrived. After all the students were seated I introduced myself and went over expectations for my class.

Today and day 2 were very short. The students went to all 8 classes each day. Each class was only about 30 minutes.



After reflecting on this I would like to get the students moving on the first day, but this will be very difficult to do. They will not be dressed for it or expecting it. One thing that I am working on is learning how to get the students to be as active as possible. I’m wondering how to get the information to them that I want them to get in an active way. The topic doesn’t really lend itself to movement.

Day 2:

Today the I lead the students through an activity to discover the difference between physical education and physical activities. We did some think/pair/share and displayed their answers on a T-Grid. These were some really great discussions. I hope they remember it throughout the year!


Like I said in day one we need to be more active. I think the partner discussion can happen in as they walk around a predetermined area. Or maybe I can give them post-its and have questions/comments up and let them answer the questions on the post-its then stick the notes to the question/comment. Then they can gallery walk to look at others answers then come back for discussion.

Day 3:

Day 3 was a good, but hard since we were doing something that neither the students or I had done before. Activating school email address and joining Google Classroom.

Today was unveiling of what I discovered last year. Our school district is a Google Apps for Education school (GAFE). No one told me! I’ve been working in my school district for 11 years! I should have known. Oh, well. I know now and it’s time to get things going.

Over the summer I set up my classes in Google Classroom and figured out how to get my students their emails and how to activate them. A very easy process, but time consuming. So, most of my students were able to activate their emails then came part two. I showed them how to join my Google Classroom. The hardest part about this was reminding them to sign out of their regular gmail accounts and singing in with their new school emails.

I was not able to totally complete the process in one day, but pretty close. I will have to finish them up next week. I quickly figured out what the next challenge was going to be. Having them check there new email.


A colleague and I were thinking it would be nice if we could hand out step-by-step directions to incoming freshman, at orientation, about how to activate their email so they could do it before school started. That way we only have to register them for our Google Classroom.

This week was a great start to the new school year. Like I told my colleagues, “If the rest of the school year is like this week it will be a great year”!

How did your first week go? I hope it went well! Make sure to comment and share that is where the real learning takes place!

Physical Education – Where Mind and Body Come Together!