Most of us are familiar with the physical benefits of activity and exercise, but it is important to remember that being physically active also helps with brain health and cognition. Higher fitness levels, the result of ongoing engagement in physical activity, are associated with higher grades and test scores compared to those with lower fitness levels.
On an immediate basis, physical activity also increases concentration and attention, which directly affects learning preparedness. Similarly, individuals tend to respond faster and more accurately to questions directly after being physically active. This is particularly true when thinking that is more complex is required, as physical activity helps the brain work more efficiently and effectively.
Although we are lucky in comparison to our counterparts in neighbouring countries in that, we are able to teach our students face-to-face most of the time. I am also aware that the increased amount of time in front of a screen with a lack of outdoor playtime during home learning weeks is having an impact on the amount of time our students spend moving and exercising.
With this in mind, next week the year 9 tutors will encourage students to complete an exercise challenge at 8.30am every morning. If students provide evidence that they have completed the challenge they will receive a merit and the tutor group with the most merits by the end of next week will win a prize.
If year 9 can involve members of their family, there will be additional rewards, so I would also like to offer this challenge to parents of year 9 students. If you are willing to send in videos of whole families completing the challenge, we would love to see them! The best videos sent in may be used in the end of term video shared in our KS3 assembly just before the Easter holiday, but will not be shared externally.
To get you started and inspire you, the KS3 pastoral team have already had a go… no one said it would be easy…..