Happy New Year, readers! My most recent contribution to the Sun newspaper on sports in schools:
Prioritising sports could be just the thing to help both the sports and education sectors. What I found disconcerting is how physical education is generally sidelined in most schools, whether private or public. PE sessions are cancelled and used to make up hours of teaching of other subjects, for example. Or how some private schools don’t include PE in their general fees but have an additional fund for it outside the semester dues.
I admit, I didn’t really enjoy PE or sports when I was in school (except taekwondo, which was extra-curricular). Many of my friends and I used to dread PE days, knowing how the teacher would just throw three balls among the whole class and say, “Go play football!” or “Run 10 laps round the field!” and head back to the staff room. So it would either be boring or it would be even more boring. None of us were taught how to coordinate movement or understand why we were told to do the things we did. Running around the school field wasn’t the epitome of exciting for growing adolescents.
So from this, we can already see many factors coming into play. Passionate and creative teachers who know how to make a curriculum interesting; hopefully an interesting curriculum; parents and teachers who might see the value of such an endeavour and try to impart this to the students; good collaboration between the Youth and sports ministry and Education Ministry; the list seems to be endless.