Our curriculum is such that health is taught as part of our physical education lessons. We’re required to have thirty minutes of movement activity. This means health rarely happens for most teachers because it’s shoved aside for more meaningful lessons like reading, writing and math.
There are so many valuable lessons in health class that can actually help with reading, writing and math, so we wrote up an entire year (and then some) of lessons to try to integrate health into other lessons. You have to teach it anyway, so why not get more out of it?
This is going to sound like an advertisement and for that we’re sorry, but we don’t agree that health should be swept aside for “more important” subjects. Health is important and for some children, they don’t get these lessons at home.
Most weeks we taught health for about 10-15 minutes a day. On short weeks (weeks with holidays or special events that interrupted our regular schedule) we would teach the longer lessons. This made it easy to meet all of our outcomes and get lots of reading and writing hidden in our days.
Our lessons are divided into units. We have several free lessons as samples to get you started if you want to see how the style of the lessons work. There are enough lessons in the whole year to teach health for SIXTY minutes a week and still not run out.
Managing Feelings: This is a unit about emotional well-being. Students learn to identify feelings, manage self-talk and address their feelings in meaningful ways. There is also a supplemental word wall set.
Expected and Unexpected Behaviors: This is a great one to use for starting off your school year by setting classroom expectations as well as addressing social situations for students from different cultural, intellectual or behavorial expectations.
Wellness Choices: This is a unit addressing general health such as stress, nutrition, exercise, sleep, dental care, medical care, and vaccinations. It includes lessons about drugs, alcohol and tobacco use.
Safety and Responsibility: This unit discusses different safety precautions and basic first aid for students. It talks about online safety, safety equipment, recreational activities (swimming, biking) safety at home/babysitting, and emergency situations such as fire, earthquake, tornado, and lightning storms.
Life Long Learning: This unit addresses learning styles, setting goals, changes in life and prioritizing.
Group Roles and Processes: This is a unit to help your students learn to work together in groups. It’s a great one to start the year with and then revisit throughout the year.
Building Positive Relationships: This unit focuses on creating strong friendships and preventing bullying. There are several lessons on how to report and deal with bullying, relationships with families and how to handle friends.
Group Activities: Communication, Teamwork & Classroom Community: Activities to help teach your students to work together as a team. The activities can be done at any point throughout the year.
All of these lessons are available in a bundle (which saves you money), but don’t forget to try the fee lessons to see if they work for you.
What are your thoughts on teaching health? Let us know in the comments below.