Movement Education Approach
A Complete Guide for Parents
What is Movement Education?
Personal Development, Health and Physical Education (PDHPE) provides
opportunities for growing children to be active, contributing to their awareness
of how to lead balanced lifestyles and execute informed healthy choices
(Fairclough & Stratton, 2005).
Movement Education (ME) is at the heart of PE and aims to help individuals
develop their basic motor skills through physical movement (Lynch, 2015).
ME approach incorporates various PDHPE Syllabus objectives (Board of Studies,
MOS1.4 Demonstrates maturing performance of basic movement and
compositional skills in a variety of predictable situations.
PSS1.5 Draws on past experiences to solve familiar problems.
ALS1.6: Particpates in physical activity, recognising that it can be both enjoyable
and important for health.
The Philosophy of our Movement
Besides motor success, ME fosters
the development of cognitive (higher
order thinking) knowledge about
ME establishes a wide foundation of
movements that children can use as a
baseline to develop and execute
It is adaptable and inclusive of all
ages and developmental stages.
ME is the essential thread that runs
through any movement required. We
as teachers, can also incorporate
important terminology into the
theoretical component (Morgan &
Hasen, 2007; Pringle, 2010).
Movement Education Gains
As parents, you will have seen your
child/children achieve their
developmental millstones of crawling,
walking and running; however, how
can we ensure that they develop
these skills proficiently as they grow
older? The ME approach allows
opportunities to refine these skills in
an environment which is stimulating,
challenging and supportive through
receiving explicit instruction and
quality feedback (Clark & Metcalfe,
2002; Dyson, 2014).
Movement Education Gains
Children benefit from social, emotional
and physical health outcomes in the
present as well long-term (Abels &
Bridges, 2010). These include:
Stronger bones and muscles;
Higher physical activity levels and
Increased levels of self-esteem and
Willingness to take risks;
Likelihood of participation in lifelong
The Building Blocks for Children
The PE curriculum also refers to
physical and motor development as
fundamental movement skills
(running, hopping, throwing,
catching, skipping etc.) that
contributes to the development of
agility, balance, co-ordination and
speed (ABCs) (Rehor, 2004).
They underpin the 6 strands of the PE
curriculum: athletics, dance,
gymnastics, games, outdoors and
If they acquire skills in these areas,
they will posses the skills and
confidence in lifelong physical
Where do we come in?
Teaching in developmental sequential order
(initial - informative - mature stages);
Providing choices enhances learning: we
inform children what to do, refine and
simplify activities, extend by making the
movement more challenging and are
engaging to maintain motivation by relating
to children’s interests;
Child-centered approach: we use stories and
imagination (circus tight rope walking,
superhero jumping), adding music/songs,
immediate feedback, opportunity to explore,
and different grouping strategies (Fairclough
& Stratton, 2005; Fishburne & Berg, 2005).
What can parents take home from this?
Concurrent with the PDHPE syllabus rationale, ME provides lifelong tools
that promote the development of motor skills, informed health choices
and actions (Board of Studies, 2014).
ME helps maintain a positive physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing=
healthy and happy growing children.
Students establish interpersonal skills and individual accountability.
MOST IMPORTANTLY: ME equals fun; after all, they are children and play is
fundamental to their social and cognitive growth.
Abels, A., & Bridges, J. (2010). Teaching Movement Education Foundations for Active Lifestyles. Retrieved from
Board of Studies, NSW (2014). NSW Personal Development, Health and Physical Education (PDHPE) K-6 Syllabus.
Clark, J. E., & Metcalfe, J. S. (2002). The mountain of motor development: A metaphor. Motor development: Research and reviews, 2,
Dyson, B. (2014). Quality physical education: A commentary on effective physical education teaching. Research Quarterly for Exercise and
Sport, 85(2), 144-152
Fairclough, S., & Stratton, G. (2005). ‘Physical education makes you fit and healthy’. Physical education's contribution to young
people's physical activity levels. Health education research, 20(1), 14-23.
Fishburne, G. J., & Berg, S. P. (2005). Building Strong Bones & Muscles. Human Kinetics.
Lynch, T. (2015). Health and physical education (HPE): Implementation in primary schools. International Journal of Educational Research,
Morgan, P., & Hansen, V. (2007). Recommendations to improve primary school physical education: Classroom teachers'
perspective. The journal of educational research, 101(2), 99-108.
Pringle, R. (2010). Finding pleasure in physical education: A critical examination of the educative value of positive movement affects.
Quest, 62(2), 119-134.
Rehor, P. R. (2004). Does the present teacher preparation curriculum in health and physical education meet the present needs of