Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Dodgeball: PE Appropriate?

Throughout the years, dodgeball has become a staple in physical education curriculums throughout the United States. Dodgeball was never offered as a part of the curriculum in my high school, but I can honestly say that atleast ten students asked to play it everytime we switched sports. From asking around, I have come to the conclusion that a lot of students have had dodgeball offered in their physical education classes in high school. There are two clear sides to the argument. Dodgeball in? Or dodgeball out? Dodgeball is a classic game that almost everyone knows how to play atleast to some extent. The game itself has a lot of benefits in the psychomotor domain such as throwing, catching, and agility. In the affective domain it allows the students to learn team cooperation and also focuses on spatial awareness. Cognitively, dodgeball allows students to figure out strategy in order to win the game as well as learn other strategies from other students. Dodgeball is a great example of a physical activity that touches on all aspects of motor development and physical well being. But what happens to the students that aren't atleast somewhat skilled in these areas? These students don't want to participate, and if they do participate, they run the risk of being bullied on, or even receiving injuries. Once a student is struck with the ball, they are out. How does this help the students that really need the help developing their skills if they are sitting out on the sideline within the first minute of the game every time it is played? For the students that truly need the help, dodgeball is just not fun. I personally feel that dodgeball is inappropriate for physical education curriculums but I think that it is appropriate for students who want to participate in an afterschool program, or a tournament at night. The game could be turned into a fundraiser for the school and I can guaruntee that students will jump at the idea of playing dodgeball if they have never had the chance to do so in the past. Overall, I feel as if dodgeball is an entertaining game, but it is definitely inappropriate for physical education classes. If students are truly interested in partipating in dodgeball, there are plenty of leagues outside of schools, or it can be worked out to have a program that is not done within the physical education periods.

Dodgeball Out

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