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The PE department deliver a high quality curriculum that is designed to inspire learners to enjoy and succeed in a range of sporting activities.  It provides learners opportunities to develop their physical confidence and extend their understanding of the importance of having a healthy lifestyle.  Through physical activity, learners are encouraged to embrace values of teamwork, respect and fair play – characteristics that will support many life situations in the future.

The PE department aims to: 

  • Develop the competence of learners in a broad range of physical activities

  • Ensure learners are physically active for sustained periods of time

  • Allow learners to engage in competitive sports, as a player, a coach and an official

  • Encourage learners to lead healthy, active lives

Learning at Key Stage 3

At this stage, learners are encouraged to build on their Key Stage 1 and 2 experiences, becoming more competent, confident and expert in their techniques, applying them across different sports and physical activities.  Learners are encouraged to be able to analyse their own performance and that of other learners, offering them feedback where appropriate.  Learners are also encouraged to develop their skill level and interest in physical activity by embracing extra-curricular activities on offer inside and outside of school.

In Year 7 and 8 learners have 3 hours of physical activity per fortnight during lesson time, alongside access to free extra-curricular activities before school, at lunch time and after school each day.  Throughout Year 7 and 8 learners undertake units of work in a variety of sports selected from the following:

Rugby – Football – Basketball – Handball – Badminton – Trampolining – Dance – Tennis – Athletics – Cricket – Volleyball – Rounders – Orienteering – Netball – Gymnastics.

Key Stage 3 – PE Course Overviews 2019 – 2020

Learning at Key Stage 4

As per national curriculum guidelines, all learners at Key Stage 4 undertake compulsory PE lessons as part of their programme of study.  These are classed as core PE lessons, and equate to one hour per week.  Learners are given the opportunity to select specific sporting activities that may generate interest and enthusiasm, enabling them to improve their level of skill and fitness.  These lessons are designed to support the importance of a healthy lifestyle providing education surrounding health and fitness for the future.

Extra Curricular in PE

Whilst at Birchwood, learners in each year group will have the opportunity to participate in extra-curricular PE activities before school, at lunch time and after school.  These clubs are free of charge, and learners can turn up on a weekly basis to participate. The current PE extra-curricular timetable can be found on the extracurricular timetable page here.  This changes throughout the school year due to the weather and dark nights.  This enables us to deliver a wider variety of activities in the hope that learners will find something that they enjoy, and would like to pursue.

Top tips for extra-curricular:

  • For clubs at lunch time, learners are permitted to wear their school uniform, and can participate in the club after they have eaten their lunch.  It is advised that learners bring some trainers with them in order to participate more appropriately. 

  • For clubs before and after school, learners should bring their PE kit and get changed in the changing rooms (either at the college or the sports hall school changing rooms – depending on where the activity is). 

  • After school clubs run for one hour, and learners should have informed their parents beforehand that they are staying at school for the club. 

  • Some clubs are recreational, and are available for learners to play and enjoy. 

  • Other clubs link to school teams.  Birchwood competes in the town, county and national championships in a variety of sports (i.e. football, basketball, netball, badminton, volleyball, tennis) and learners will have the opportunity to be selected and represent the school in these tournaments throughout the school year.  On these occasions, information will be relayed to parents, and on most occasions, parents will be able to watch and support their children. 

  • Learners are encouraged to participate in as many extra-curricular clubs as possible.