ACTIVE SCHOOLS: PUPIL QUESTIONNAIRE RESULTS.
In 2020, prior to the initial school closure, we surveyed our students to find out what they liked about P.E. at Rathmore N.S. and what improvements could be made to make our Active School even better!
Before we had a chance to analyse the findings and incorporate some recommendations, the first lockdown of 2020 hit us with a bang! During remote teaching and learning, we encouraged our children to stay active and we even managed to have a remote Active Schools Week in 2020. Seeing photos of the children incorporate our Active Schools slogan, at home, ‘Get off your chair and get some air’ lifted the spirits of all. In June 2021, almost a year after our remote Active Week, we were thrilled to hold an in-school Active Week. Lots of fun was had by all, each day, and the weather shone all week.
As restrictions are once again lifting, we look forward to revisiting our students’ suggestions. Our swimming lessons have not been possible since March 2020 and as there has been no mixing of pods, there has been no school football/hurling/athletics events. We hope these will be back VERY soon.
Our Active school pupil questionnaire revealed the following information:
- Our students enjoy P.E class, with Games and Athletics being the most popular strands. They wish that P.E. was longer and on more days.
- Active Homework and the active break challenge (Feb 2020) was given a thumbs up by most students.
- Some students wish there was a gymnastics club in the school.
- Others just want to be on the same team as their friend during P.E. class.
- Playing on the pitch at break times is a firm favourite with all students and this is something that does happen when the weather and seasons are on our side.
- When it’s raining, the classroom based physical activity breaks are welcomed by students so that they can get off their chair and move about.
- Students would like to see us use some of the equipment that is not used often e.g. table tennis, javelins, scavenger hunts.
- Requests were made to have footballs available to use at break times. One student even suggested that we use soft balls so ‘we don’t hurt anybody’.
- Others would like to be able to play with beanbags and skipping ropes during yard time. These were used before our first school closure in March 2020 and are being slowly reintroduced in February/March 2022.
- Many asked for P.E. to be held outside. One of the positive changes, due to the pandemic, is that this occurs now.
- Some of our students would like the following: swings, a slide, a tree house, monkey bars, a trampoline, a zip line, a climbing wall, a sand pit and a tunnel. We might need to win the LOTTO for those but it’s always good to dream😊
RENEWING OUR FLAG
Our students are in favour of renewing our Active Flag because ‘it encourages everyone to stay fit’ and ‘it’s fun and healthy’. They think that ‘it makes school fun’ and ‘people will go out and exercise instead of sitting down all day’.
ACTIVE SCHOOLS: PARENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESULTS.
Parents agreed with their children when it came to enjoying P.E, particularly Games and Athletics. Parents of Rathmore N.S. feel that the daily running of our school track benefits their child and that our school provides a playground environment that encourages their child to be active during break times. Here are some comments from parents:
HOW CAN WE IMPROVE PLAYGROUND BREAKS?
‘Teachers are busy enough, so maybe some 6th class could organise games etc with the smaller classes. Good for them all, once it’s fun, they will do it’.
‘More facilitated games – to avoid the tendency for children to just play ‘tag’.
‘Allow slightly longer breaks and encourage kids to try new skills/ activities’.
‘Perhaps leave out some equipment that the children can help themselves e.g. beanbags, rope ladders etc’.
‘Introduce a monthly step challenge and introduce other games for kids that are not so sporty e.g. stretching/ yoga’.
DO YOU HAVE ANY FEEDBACK TOWARDS RENEWING OUR ACTIVE SCHOOL FLAG?
‘Track run is fantastic’.
‘It’s a very positive activity for the school and pupils. Given all the electronic gadgets, more exercise is always best at school, if not at home’.
‘I think the school already does a great job encouraging sports, football, athletics etc.’
‘Introduce a ‘Walk to School’ programme. Once a month, everyone walks from the church to the school’.
‘More Active Fun Play E.g. Hopscotch’.
‘The children walk or run the track everyday which is a great form of exercise’.