Primary Schools

How to make PE inclusive for each child

PE teacher helping girl to play badminton

We believe that to adopt an active lifestyle, children should be active from a young age. 

Physical activity is crucial for the development of children’s physical and cognitive skills, but there is a closing window of opportunity before puberty to develop the fundamental movement skills that lead to a high level of autonomy. After that, children will find it much harder to master fundamental movement skills and may struggle to participate in PE and school sports (read more about that here.)

Studies have shown that individuals with positive experiences of PE from school were more likely to be active into adulthood. Therefore, it’s important that PE and school sport lessons are inclusive and encourage every child to develop a positive relationship with activity. 

So, how can we ensure that students have a constructive and enjoyable PE experience? Here are a few of our ideas.

Accessible PE programmes for all abilities

First and foremost, your class must cater for all abilities. Children who need additional help should feel supported otherwise they won’t be comfortable asking for guidance.

You may also have pupils who aren’t as able bodied as the rest of the class who will need greater support. The most important thing is to make every pupil feel valued and included in the lesson.

By spending the first part of the term developing fundamental movement skills and the second part of the term playing sports, you are encouraging individual development and team building skills. 

Regular Assessments 

It’s human nature to enjoy the things we are good at, and therefore by improving each child’s ability we can also make PE more enjoyable for them. If you don’t measure it, you can’t improve it. Conducting regular physical assessments ensures that each child is progressing through the national curriculum.

Personalised Home Activity plans

By setting personalised activity plans for pupils to complete in their own time, you are encouraging pupils to progress in their own time. This creates more time during PE lessons to play with others and participate in team sports.  

Promote a positive school-wide attitude towards health and fitness

Make sure that every member of staff in your school is an advocate for activity and healthy lifestyle choices. Children are very impressionable and if they hear anything negative about PE or school sport it may influence their attitude towards it.  

Encourage a school-wide drive for positive change by organising staff sports events, having healthy lunch options and allow children to get involved with lots of outdoor and indoor sporting activities.

Get Parents Involved

A positive attitude towards activity also needs to be embraced at home. Have a friendly discussion with parents about how to help their children to be more active at home and explain the reasons behind the home activity plans. This will encourage parents to engage in their child’s learning and alter their habits to bring positive change to the whole family. 

Amaven supports the delivery of outstanding PE and school sports, visit our education section for more information about how you can transform the quality of PE in your school.