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Wonder Secondary Physical Education (GCSE)

Wonder Secondary Physical Education (GCSE)
Curriculum taught at:

Our vision

Part of our performance discipline, Physical Education develops the language and habits of sport and physical activity.  In addition to promoting healthy lifestyles, children will further develop their coordination and fine motor skills, learn tactics and strategies to help them thrive in team games, and build confidence and team working skills.

Children will become performers, team players, and increasingly courageous as they develop physical skills and knowledge through a range of activities.

Performer The verb perform means, in its lateral parts, to carry out completely. Like other subjects in our performance discipline, physical education requires a commitment to process of practice, review, and completion. It teaches children the habit of working toward a personal goal. In our lessons we support this by carefully breaking down the parts of each activity – from the fine movements and processes of unique actions to the strategies needed to overcome an opponent. We also provide opportunity to revisit and rehearse these skills and, through our assessment, help children see how they are improving.
Team Player Working in a team requires trust and our colleagues work hard to build relationships with pupils that help them feel comfortable about performing across all sports and exercise activities. In addition, pupils work to support each other. They learn, they assess, compete, and work collectively.
Courageous Taking part in a sporting event requires courage – courage in facing an opponent but also courage in pushing themselves to achieve further. All children will be given the opportunity to perform in front of their school in our sports day at events. As pupils move into Year 10 and 11 they will show courage in different and wider ways – in becoming sports leaders to work with children at our feeder primaries and lower school – and learning to save lives through first aid.

Physical Education Curriculum

Children will engage with a wide range of seasonal sports and activities throughout their time with us.  At Lower School, for example, these include:

WINTER / SPRING: Netball, Football, Rugby, Hockey, Badminton, Dance, Fitness, Basketball, Team Building, Tag Rugby, Gymnastics, Handball, Table Tennis and Volleyball.

SUMMER: Athletics, Cricket, Rounders and Softball.

Pupils build upon the skills acquired in KS1 and KS2 and – as they move into KS4, they develop the skills and tactics learned at lower school.  They learn to refine and use these skills in different scenarios. They are encouraged to secure their  understanding of what ‘quality’ performance looks like and ways in which performance can be evaluated.

Pupils develop their understanding of how to succeed in different activities and evaluate and appreciate both their own achievements and the achievements of others.

Pupils are encouraged to see PE as a major feature within their own lives, relating to leisure, employment and culture. They learn to recognise the effects and role of exercise in a fit and healthy lifestyle. All pupils are encouraged to enhance their own understanding of safe practice, developing a range of desirable personal qualities such as politeness, perseverance, initiative and concern for others.

Teaching covers the strands of the National Curriculum and ensures that when evaluating performance, connections are made between developing, selecting and applying skills, tactics and compositional ideas and fitness and health.

Pupils will have the opportunity

  • To develop skilful use of the body, the ability to remember, repeat and refine actions and to perform them with increasing control, coordination and fluency.
  • To develop an increasing ability to select, link and apply skills, tactics and compositional ideas.
  • To improve observation skills and the ability to describe and make simple judgements on their own and others work, using observations to help improve performance.
  • To develop an understanding of the effects of exercise on the body, and an appreciation of the value of safe exercise.
  • To develop the ability to work independently and communicate with, and respond positively towards others.
  • To promote an understanding of safe practice and develop a sense of responsibility towards their own and others safety and wellbeing.

Our curriculum is also sequenced so that pupils return to and revisit key sporting activities and exercise throughout their time with us.

Our Teaching

PE combines two key types of knowledge.  Most obviously, this includes procedural knowledge – knowing how to carry out activities and sports to a high standard.  However, in order to be able to perform activities effectively, children need to know what kinds of specific tactics, movements, and other information will be important to be successful.

We believe that a quality PE curriculum works to combine knowledge of sport with the ability to apply it effectively in context so that our children are thoughtful, successful, and accomplished performers.  Consequently, our teaching is built around three key aspects of knowledge that make up an excellent physical education.  These continually support the physical activity children complete in lessons.

Motor competence

In the teaching of any kind of physical activity, our colleagues take care to emphasise and carefully teach the skills required to be successful.  This is carried out through powerful demonstrations of the activity by colleagues and children but also through the way teaching is sequenced to ensure that prepare activities develop these skills at the start of any lesson and through the way these skills are revisited between tasks.

Each set of skills will be unique to the activity required, consisting of locomotor skills (such as running and jumping), stability skills (such as twisting or balancing) and manipulation skills (involved in throwing and catching) and the activities children experience through their time with us have been carefully chosen to encompass as many varieties and to systematically revisit these skills.

While these skills are demonstrated physically during performance, we also recognise that there is a vocabulary and knowledge base for children to learn about these skills and we deliver and test this without disrupting the time children spend being active in lessons.

Rules, strategies, and tactics

Knowledge in PE is interconnected and so the delivery of tactics builds upon the teaching of motor skills.  For example, a pass in basketball can be powerful and direct but if the pass is to the wrong person then it is ineffective.  In experiencing a variety of activities that include invasion games as well as other individual activities, we model and teach Intelligent movement.  This means that children perform according to the demands of the context, which is informed by their knowledge of the relevant conventions and conditions of the activity.

We appreciate that different pupils will have different levels of expertise in some sports depending on their levels of participating outside of school but we aim to provide challenging delivery of this concept to all pupils.  In addition, by bringing in a broad range of sports where tactics overlap, we aim to create competitors with excellent team work and problem solving skills.

As with motor competence, there is a body of knowledge for children to learn and engage with and this is delivered through physical activity but also assessed discretely.

Healthy participation

At the heart of Physical Education is the legacy it will leave children in making healthy choices in the future.  We ensure that pupils explicitly learn to prepare for safe and effective participation in different activities or the different fitness demands.   We teach this in context, helping pupils to understand the specific benefits of different activities – for example through concepts such as ‘aerobic’ and ‘anaerobic’ – for our pupils to develop an understanding of how to enhance their current and later health.

Modelling and doing

It is important that the knowledge children learn is set into the context of doing the activity itself and so even when outlining the purpose and presenting the new content, this is done in a practical setting.  Demonstrations will highlight particular aspects of an activity or movement to highlight to pupils each lesson before carefully monitoring and assessing pupils on that specific aspect.  In doing so, this will reduce the likelihood of overloading pupils’ working memory with unnecessary, distracting information to enable each lesson to develop a particular aspect of performance.  Furthermore, the pupil’s subsequent efforts to replicate the movement or strategy, for example, allow the teacher to identify what the pupil knows and where there might be gaps in knowledge or misconceptions.

Consequently, ongoing assessment in lessons with verbal feedback to pupils is a key part of our teaching practice.

How families can support
  • Encourage positive attitudes towards leading an active healthy lifestyle.
  • Support pupils in attending extra clubs and practices.
  • Understand the physical, mental and social benefits of physical activity.
  • Provide pupils with the correct PE kit.
  • Inform PE staff of any medical concerns.
Sequencing and Assessment

A ‘spiral’ curriculum in PE that allows pupils to return to key activities throughout their time with us allows them the opportunity to show mastery and improvement, as well as set personal bests.  The standard expected at each stage increases – not just through the level and complexity of knowledge needed through movement and tactics but also through the quality shown through modelling and activities.

This is important as it goes beyond they mastery of a particular activity but show children the process by which athletes get better at their chosen sport -by revisiting, reviewing, and mastering more complex movements and strategies. 


Assessment and setting in Year 7 are done through initial base setting of motor skills and fitness levels.  Continual assessment is regularly done by the department and movement within groups is done throughout the academic year.

Progress points are embedded within lessons, and focus around practical performances, physical attributes decision making as well as leadership and coaching opportunities.