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How I Teach: Brian Gadient

The more I teach, the more I realize how lucky I am to be a part of the #physed community. Every day, I find myself being inspired and wowed by this group of amazing teachers from around the world. That’s why I’ve decided to take a second each week and highlight one of these incredible educators. This week’s post is from a fellow Canadian PE teacher with one of the most dedicated PE YouTube channels I have ever seen:

Name: Brian Gadient
Where Are You From: Manitoba, Canada
Where Do You Teach: Arborgate School
One word that best describes how you teach:
Committed

What apps/tools/resources can’t you live without?

I’m fairly new into exploring the whole ‘tech in PE’ piece, but in the past few months I’ve been drawn into things such as the #physed Twitter community, TGFU apps, iPhys-Ed.com, ThePhysicalEducator.com, and various PE related youtube channels and blogs. It’s crazy just how much info is out there for PE teachers thanks to the strong community abroad.

When I’m able to find the time, I enjoy the Monday night #pechat sessions – it’s like a free professional development and is great to get ideas from all over the place. As a part of my teaching I’m very often using Excel and Publisher to create lists and posters, although I’m quickly learning that there may be other ways – via apps and whatnot – to do some of the things perhaps a bit better (I’m always flexible to change, and believe that’s hugely important for all teachers).

Our school this year has used a projector screen based scoreboard and have found that to be another cool way to use tech in the gym. Also with the projector screen in the gym I’ve been able to run some Wii Fitness lessons and show activities or Youtube videos to a class or group. For example, I’ve gone through @Physed_Pomeroy’s cone drill session with my running club. Learning new stuff every week from other #pegeeks out there has really made a difference in my own teaching.

What do your #physed classes look like?

This year I’ve really been pushing to incorporate literacy and numeracy into my PE classes, especially since those two things are major school goals for us (and likely for many other schools out there as well).

When students walk into the gym, they see a warm-up math equation that they can think about as they are changing. It’s essentially a basic to advanced math equation that students figure out to see how many warm-up laps to run, or how many of a particular warm-up exercise to do depending what unit we are in. There is also a physical literacy wordwall of PE-related terms that is ever-growing every time we introduce new words – I think it’s at around 80 words right now – actions, movements, sports terms, etc.

Although we have certain familiar class routines – warm-up, skill-work, related game – we also like to switch things up and be all-over-the-place sometimes. Personally I love doing outdoors stuff like skating, skiing, snowshoeing in winter and then there’s all the summer sports too; but there’s always room for low organized games… I’ve recently discovered a bunch of numeracy and literacy based activities to do with the classes as well. I try to see all the students needs in the big picture and in the end my goal is to keep kids active and have them discover even just one thing that they enjoy that they can take with them as a lifelong physical activity.

What’s the most unique thing about your teaching?

This question has me a bit stumped.. it’s hard for me to pick out what truly is unique about my teaching. I guess that I find that I’m always considering the big picture and how each one of my students have vastly different needs. When I pair that with knowing what I want to accomplish through my physed program, I feel I can shape a pretty solid PE experience for all of them. And have a lot of fun doing it 🙂

What’s the best teaching advice you’ve ever received?

All kids can be reached, you just need to find a way to connect.

Where can people find you online?

Twitter: @PhysEdGames
Youtube: www.youtube.com/PhysEdGames
Website: www.physedgames.com (This is a must see resource. Brian’s commitment to his YouTube channel is amazing! – Joey)

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Joey Feith is the founder of ThePhysicalEducator.com. He currently teaches elementary physical education at St. George’s School of Montreal in Quebec, Canada.

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