When my family began home schooling six years ago, I was not concerned about teaching my children Reading and Arithmetic. Even the messy Art and Science projects did not scare me off.
No, the subject that had me quaking in my new home school mom shoes was Physical Education (Phys. Ed.). You might know it as Gym class. In my vocabulary, it's also called "Stress," "Ouch," and "Is it over yet?"
By now, you may have guessed that I was one of those school kids who was chosen last for every team (except the school spelling bee) and who sat in a corner engrossed in my library book during recess while my friends played tag.
After high school, I did learn to appreciate the importance of physical fitness, and discovered activities that I enjoyed. However, I did not look forward to struggling through Phys. Ed. with my children, as I had for the sake of my own education.
Fortunately, you can design a home school Phys. Ed. curriculum that is flexible (even if you're not) and fits your family's interests. You can also include many activities that you do not usually think of as being Phys. Ed.
A good rule of thumb is to make sure your kids get 30 minutes of physical activity each day. Anything that gets your kids' blood moving and hearts pumping counts! Here are some of the activities that we've done for Phys. Ed. so far.
Leagues If your kids enjoy a particular sport, like bowling, basketball or hockey, see if you can register them in a league that will allow them to play regularly. They'll get lots of exercise and maybe make some new friends that share their interest.
Lessons If joining a sports league does not appeal to your child, try looking for some lessons they would enjoy. Horseback riding, ball hockey, dance, or swimming are just a few of your options.
Playtime It does not have to be structured activity, either. Your Phys. Ed. curriculum can include climbing monkey bars, swinging, or using any other type of playground equipment. Running up hills then rolling down them counts too.
Housework Get your kids to help you vacuum, sweep, dust, rake the leaves, or shovel the snow. It's physical activity, and they're learning valuable life skills.
Family Fun Go for family walks in your neighborhood, or take a nature hike. A family bike ride can be fun. If your child is too young to ride far, rent or buy a two-seat bike so you can help with the pedaling. Any physical activity you can enjoy as a family will help keep you and your child fit, while giving you opportunities to spend quality time together.