Students receive practical lessons on the differences between interval training, fartlek training or continuous training as well as the importance of targeting heart rate zones. Having invested in polar heart rate monitors, students use these during their classes to discover, if what they feel is matching up with the theory provided. All lessons are practical and active, with short intervals of theoretical information. After the initial introduction of the training methods, and training zones, students are tasked to develop a plan that will improve their own endurance level.
As a starting point students will take the beep test to allow them to create a target for the weeks following. Their challenge is then to plan ahead on how to improve their testing score in just four weeks time. After the planning stage, students are given lesson time to put their plan into action. During one PE lesson a week the students will work independently on their own plan. Some will stay in the gym, others start to run the stairs or go outside. On top of the weekly PE session the students are required to create time, once a week, at home to complete their second CVE workout session.
To guide the students through this process and to assist them on their journey, they have received a journal where they trace their planning and reflect on their progress. Within the current MYP curriculum this allows for an opportunity to assess multiple criteria, all by just one task.
The written work about what students will do and how they will apply their knowledge falls under the Criterion A. The planning, the creation of the whole physical improvement plan allows for the Criterion B. If the student writes the plan not for himself but for a class mate and assumes the role of a coach then the interaction aspect can be assessed, allowing for a Criterion D to be involved too.
Although it seems like quite a large task, students are able to write down their workout with just a few lines (although there are always students who give you the full essay). And when planned correctly it asks minimal time per session. The students have enjoyed the freedom to develop their own plan and for many it has been an eye-opener how little they actually move outside of school hours. Students were surprised to feel that they were getting stronger and faster within just a few weeks and that they had the power to improve their own fitness level.
For me the most important message that I want my students to take from this is, that they can influence their own well being, their own fitness level far more then they thought they could.