Choice PE created to give students more freedom


A new gym class to join the Stevenson roster this school year is Choice Physical Education (PE). Choice PE consists of numerous activities that students can choose to be apart of while switching at the beginning of every six weeks.

One of the newer teachers to join Stevenson’s Physical Education staff is Eric Ramos. This is Ramos’ second year at Stevenson.
“Choice PE is an umbrella term for most of the PE classes we can offer,” Ramos said. “It provides the students the ability to come in everyday and decide what they want to do, based on what they want and need.”

The goal is to allow students to have the ability to pick what activity they want to do, instead of being assigned one. Kristen Cardella ’17 is taking Choice PE for the first time.

“Unlike dance or other gym classes, you can do what you want and set goals for yourself,” Cardella said.

At the beginning of every six weeks, the whole gym class comes together and picks their top choices from a variety of activities. Most kids get their first pick, but the upperclassmen have seniority over underclassmen.

Once students are in the class of their choosing, they take surveys on which activities they would like to do as well as setting SMART goals for themselves every so often.

SMART goal stands for specific, measurable attainable, realistic and timely. Students are asked to come up with one goal pertaining to their health. The range of goals includes sleep, healthy eating habits and physical activity.

“Choice PE is a great idea because instead of being committed to one type of activity for an entire semester students get the opportunity to try new things,” PE Leader Adi Alkalay ’16 said.

Activities range from weight training, group fitness, team sports, aquatics based, and cardiovascular activities. Choice PE aims to get kids the exercise they need as well as allow them to chose the means in which they achieve this.

“I would recommend [Choice PE] because it’s easy and you have choices,” Cardella said.

As well as this being a new experience for students, it is also a new experience for the teachers. Many teachers are apart of the Choice PE program and hope to continue to do so.

“The teachers have to be really flexible on what they teach because the number of students dictates where they’re going to be,” Ramos said.
For example, if there are 100 students signed up for team sports there may need to be two to three teachers while group fitness may only have a class of 30 students with one teacher.

As for how the class is going, there has been nothing but praise from both the student and teacher perspectives.

“I’ve seen more kids coming in from outside sweaty with smiles on their faces,” Ramos said. “They’re really getting to know their classmates and that speaks volumes. We don’t even have to interview kids it’s just the eyeball test —you know things are right.”