Curriculum & Minutes

The National Standards for Physical Education provide an excellent framework for delineating content (i.e., program objectives) that is appropriate for inclusion in a physical education program. Collectively, the standards represent far more content than can be taught effectively in programs that meet less than five days per week. Trying to address too many objectives, in too little time, results in programs that merely expose students to a variety of objectives without adequate opportunity to effect permanent change in behavior. If physical education programs are to make a difference in the lives of children, the number of objectives addressed must be proportional to the instructional time that is available. While the goal of physical education professionals is to provide students with quality, daily physical education, current reality is that students spend far less time than this in physical education. EPEC™ Classic is based on offering physical education two days per week. By implementing EPEC™ Classic, physical educators can easily foster and document student learning, and then use this effectiveness data to request more resources (e.g., time, equipment, facilities).
 
The EPEC™ Classic K–5 curriculum is based on a program that meets two, 30-minute class periods per week. Accordingly, the number of program objectives to include in the curriculum was matched to this resource (i.e., instructional time). The selection of content began by prioritizing objectives based on their relative importance to an exemplary physical education curriculum. 250 potential program objectives were rated by more than 130 stakeholders including physical educators, administrators, and parents from 18 independent school districts. Subsequently, they were ranked on the basis of the average scores received in these ratings. The highest-ranked, grade-appropriate program objectives were chosen for inclusion. Table 1 lists the 35 EPEC™ Classic K-5 program objectives with allocated instructional minutes by grade and by National Standard. The EPEC™ Classic framework is designed to accommodate addition of more K-5 program objectives as time for physical education expands to the desired five days per week.
 
 
The EPEC™ Classic K-5 curriculum is broadly defined in the Curricular Minute Matrix (Table 1). It is further outlined in the Curricular Scope and Sequence Matrices (Tables 2 through 5) located at the end of this document. These matrices define what is taught (i.e., the specifics about the program objectives) in each of the 51 lessons per grade. The specifics are delineated in EPEC™ Classic Teaching/Learning Progressions (TLPs), which are a series of instructional steps that, when mastered, lead to competence on a program objective. These TLPs are described in further detail in the following section. Collectively, all the steps from all 35 objectives were used to determine the Scope and Sequence for instruction within and across grades in the EPEC™ Classic K-5 curriculum.
 
For illustration, a sample section of the Curricular Scope and Sequence Matrix from term four is reproduced in Figure 2 (click to enlarge). Note that it is arranged in columns by grade level and in rows by lessons within each grade.
 
 
Each 30-minute lesson is composed of two, 15-minute instructional portions. In general, each 15-minute portion addresses one program objective, with one or two and sometimes three teaching/learning steps being addressed. For example, Lesson 1-41 includes instruction on the program objectives Compassion (with TLP step 3 taught) and Catch Fly Balls (with TLP steps 2 and 3 taught).
 
Most object-control skill, locomotor skill, knowledge, and activity objectives are taught in a “spiral” fashion. Steps in the teaching/learning progression are introduced and/or reviewed in several lessons per grade. For example, Catch Fly Balls is addressed or taught in four lessons in kindergarten. Fifteen minutes of each of these lessons are dedicated to instruction in catching fly balls (for a total of 60 minutes of instruction in kindergarten) and the other 15 minutes are dedicated to instruction on another program objective (e.g., skip). In Lesson K-40, TLP steps 1 and 2 are the lesson objectives for Catch Fly Balls and become the focus of instruction in this lesson. In Lesson K-41, TLP steps 1, 2, and 3 are the lesson objectives; steps 1 and 2 are reviewed and step 3 is introduced. In Lesson K-42, TLP steps 2 and 3 are reviewed. In Lesson K-43, TLP step3 is the lesson objective.
 
Catch Fly Balls, like most other objectives, is actually taught all the way through grade five in this “spiral” fashion. Steps in the Teaching/Learning Progression are introduced and/or reviewed not only within grades, but also across grades. For example, in first grade lessons for Catch Fly Balls, TLP steps 2 and 3 are reviewed; however, the last lesson in first grade (i.e., 1-43) takes students through TLP step 4, which is farther on the Teaching/Learning Progression than where they were by the end of kindergarten. This review and introduction of new steps continues at each grade until all steps in the Teaching/Learning Progression eventually are addressed. In this way, students receive multiple opportunities to observe and practice each TLP step, increasing the likelihood that they will have the necessary prerequisites and competencies to continue instruction on the targeted objectives.
 
Since each step of the fitness objectives involves a different exercise, these objectives do not spiral, but instead are focused on helping students achieve grade-level standards through a variety of exercises.
 
The personal/social skill objectives are taught either from kindergarten through grade two, or from grades three through five. Each personal/social objective includes four TLP steps: step 1 is a definition of the skill, steps 2 and 3 each describe three different indicators of that skill, and step 4 involves using all six indicators when participating in physical activities. In the first two years in which each personal/social skill is taught, step 1 is taught on the first day, step 2 on the second day, and step 3 on the third day. In the third year, step 1 is reviewed on the first day, steps 2 and 3 are reviewed on the second day, and step 4 is introduced on the third day.
 
Although there are specific class segments set aside for instruction and practice using each of the personal/social skills, we encourage you to incorporate elements of these skills into other lessons throughout the term. For example, during term 3, ask students K-2 how they cooperated with you and with others during activities on the slide or hand dribble. Answers may involve the activities themselves (e.g., taking turns) or may extend to getting ready for the activity (e.g., working with others to get into position, helping others get needed equipment, etc.).
 
Experienced EPEC™ Classic teachers have reported success in extending the focus on these skills beyond the physical education classroom by encouraging the principal and other teachers to adopt the personal/social skills as a school-wide theme. Personal/social skill instruction is designed to align generally with the school year and popular activities as noted to the right.
 
Tables 2-5 illustrate the suggested Scope and Sequence for teaching the EPEC™ Classic K-5 content; however, you may adjust this as appropriate for your students and for your district objectives. Be aware that later steps in some objectives require the ability to perform skills from other objectives. For example, in order to perform TLP step 8 of the Instep Kick, students must be able to do TLP step 4 of the Foot Dribble. Following the EPEC™ Classic K-5 Scope and Sequence will ensure that students have the necessary prerequisites to perform the skills; however, if you develop an alternative scope and sequence, skills needed from other objectives are listed at the beginning of the Practice section in the Instructional Segments.
 
 

The specific content of each of the suggested EPEC™ Classic K-5 lessons appears in Tables 2-5. The Program Objectives addressed and the steps of the Teaching/Learning Progressions taught are listed for each lesson.

 


Use the tabs at the top left to explore this in-depth overview of EPEC™ Classic K–5.

For more general information and news, view the main EPEC™ Classic K–5 page.

Ready to Order? Visit our Product Ordering Page

Have questions? Email us at resources@michiganfitness.org