Trainee PE teachers run orienteering festival

On 7 February 50 pupils from Peacehaven Community School took part in an orienteering festival run by PGCE and School Direct trainee PE teachers at the School of Sport and Service Management in Eastbourne.

The Year 10s learning objectives and outcomes from the event were in line with the GCSE Orienteering assessment criteria; success is judged on how efficiently and safely challenges were overcome in activities such as orienteering, using walking or running, navigational exercises and problem solving.

PGCE and School Direct course leader and principal lecturer, Dr Gary Stidder, said: “Off-site experiences such as these provide pupils with the opportunity to compete against themselves using navigational skills that they may not have been able to use before.

“Problem solving and decision making in teams are the core of these orienteering activities and have great appeal to many pupils in secondary schools.”

PGCE PE student Mollie Eyles commented: “Pupils’ achievements were evidenced today through their ability to complete an orienteering course using techniques such as pacing, hand railing, thumbing and taking bearing.  We were also able to incorporate the use ICT by using the electronic timing devices that calculate the time taken in between each control point and the total time taken to complete the course.”

School Direct PE student, William Sawyer said: “For us as trainee PE teachers it provides much needed subject knowledge enhancement and an opportunity to incorporate thematic learning and cross-curricular teaching within our lessons.

“We have been able to help pupils use mathematical and geographical skills in a fun way whilst providing an opportunity to achieve a grade that will go towards their overall GCSE practical assessment. I am fully confident now of my own ability to run an event such as this in my placement school.”

Peacehaven community school head of PE, James Clarke said: “We are immensely grateful to the University of Brighton and their trainee PE teachers for providing such a wonderful opportunity to put into practice what they have learnt at school and apply this in an unfamiliar environment. The day was superbly organised and each of the activities were both physically demanding and educational.”

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