Implied Curriculum: Physical Education for All Students

935 Words Jun 23rd, 2018 4 Pages
Physical education is a component of the American education system about which politicians, administrators, doctors, and others frequently debate. Some see it as an integral part of a student’s education - a part that is often underemphasized due to time and budget constraints. Others see it as a non-essential, indicating that a student’s academic day should not be interrupted with something as non-academic as sports (Pill, 2012). In fact, currently only 2.1 percent of high schools provide the nationally recommended daily physical education, CDC found (Society of Health and Physical Educators, 2014). Based on the recommendations from the leading research, however, many schools are adopting a more holistic view of the student, emphasizing …show more content…
This problem, which Soukup, Henrick, and Barton-Weston (2010) relate to a phenomenon called exercise identity, is one that has some researchers concerned. Inspired by the research that shows that active adolescents are more likely to be active adults, Soukup, Henrick, and Barton-Weston conducted a study on the differences between the exercise identities of athletes versus non-athletes. They found that the affective domain was more likely to determine lifelong exercise than the cognitive domain. That is, students who enjoyed athletics due to camaraderie, competition, etc. were more like to engage in lifelong fitness than those who cognitively knew the benefits of lifelong fitness but did not participate in extracurricular sports. Based on their findings, the researchers recommend that schools work to provide extracurricular athletic activities for all students, whether intervarsity or intramural. Schools should offer after-school activities that will appeal to all students, not just activities for the physically elite. Such activities might include hiking, biking, Ultimate Frisbee, and more. By offering a wide array of choices, students can participate in activities that they find enjoyable, thus encouraging lifelong fitness.
Both physical education classes and athletic programs offer opportunities for students to develop their physical
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