What is the World Coming to?

Its third term at school and for Phys Ed teachers that means athletics carnivals – a day where .5% of the population get to show everybody else what they can do and 99.5% sit around and get bored silly.

But to figure out who the .5% are we need to have ‘trials’ during phys ed classes. Which means everybody, runs and we look to see who is fastest. Some of the kids enjoy it, but for some it ranges from just plain scary to deeply humiliating.

I love competition, but I hate to see these kids forced into doing what they just can never succeed at. Everybody knows fat kids don’t run 800m well – and the fat kids know it especially well…

In recent years it seems schools have moved away from the pure competition based carnivals in favour of more fun based events, but we still have to ‘run kids off’ for those competitive spaces. I don’t like it and am starting to think of a better way.

Yesterday was the 800m. It was amazing how many kids got sick/had sore legs when they discovered what we were doing… Some of them were poor runners and felt scared. Others were just plain lazy and like to avoid effort.

I have no time for the latter. And it disturbs me to see a trend emerging. I remember 15 years ago it was a challenge to get kids to run 3 or 4kms. Its not a long way, but most would do it and most wouldn’t even flinch.


The thought of a whole 800m has them dropping like flies. Two laps of the oval… 3 – 4 minutes of running… crikey!…

We are developing a crop of sedentary young people with little get up and go for whom 800m is a marathon.

While I see the problems in the system I see what else is occurring at the same time. Where will we be in 20 years time? A bunch of little fatties play sport on the computer and simulate the experience because its too difficult to leave the house and walk to the park?…

Yesterday’s hero was a year 6 student who is overweight, has struggled for acceptance and was scared in several different ways by the whole experience. My genuine encouragement to kids is to do your best, and to simply try and get around without slowing to a walk.

This guy did it. He ran the whole way – not fast – but he made it. What a proud little fella he was at the end and how good to see a kid make the effort!download madea goes to jail movie

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *