School of Sport & Exercise Science

Teaching Key Stage 2 Outdoor Education: Student Residential Trip

July 21st, 2017 · No Comments · Events, Staff, Students

In May 2017, a group of students on the BSc (Hons) PE and Sport and BSc (Hons) Sport Development and Coaching programmes attended an exciting and challenging outdoor education residential course at Hagg Farm Outdoor Education Centre in the Peak District. Hagg Farm Centre provides primary and secondary schools in Nottingham with outdoor learning experiences which meet the requirements of the National Curriculum for Physical Education.

Outdoor education is an aspect of the curriculum which provides young people with unique learning experiences which are wholly different to other activities traditionally taught as part of Physical Education curriculum. Despite its educative value, it is often considered to be difficult to deliver and can be an underdeveloped area of Physical Education provision.

Programme leaders Donna Windard and Lindsay Brown wanted to provide undergraduate students with an opportunity to develop their knowledge of this aspect of Physical Education, as well as improving their confidence and skills when working with children in outdoor education environments. Donna and Lindsay worked closely with Phil Baker and Jules Barratt at Hagg Farm to design a bespoke programme which aimed to develop students’ understanding of how to safely plan, deliver and assess pupil learning during a Key Stage 2 outdoor education residential course.

abseiling obstacle

Throughout the course students engaged in activities that Hagg Farm use with Key Stage 2 children. For each activity students received copies of lesson plans that were mapped to the National Curriculum, learning about the setting of learning outcomes, progression and regression tasks, and how to assess learning within each task. The course began with a series of problem-solving activities which were designed to develop children’s cooperation, teamwork and leadership skills. Some of the activities were completed at night time in pitch darkness, which certainly added to the challenge and amusement!

Over the following two days students (and staff) explored the Peak District and experienced a range of physical and emotional challenges. These included caving in a long-abandoned lead mine, gorge walking, abseiling at Monsal Head viaduct, and rock climbing on Stanage Edge.

smile classroom

The group learned how these activities mapped with the National Curriculum. They also learned how to link these activities to other curriculum areas, including geography and science. It goes without saying that these were exciting and rewarding activities. Students who struggled with heights took on the challenge of abseiling, others who were not confident in water jumped into rock pools and some who were claustrophobic mastered caving. Everyone had a sense of personal and team achievement.

Evening activities included workshops with speakers from the National Trust who talked about management of the Peak District National Park, and from Nottinghamshire County Council who provided insight of how teachers should plan an outdoor education course with children focusing on risk assessment.

Staff-led activities included a dusk walk to the famous Derwent Dam, where students took turns to navigate and lead the group in a series of question based activities linked to geography and natural history. One particularly memorable event was the ‘fire-pit’, where stories were shared, songs were sung and marshmallows were toasted well into the wee small hours. A fantastic way for the group to bond and relax. For all, this was a unique and rewarding experience.

blindfold group

 (click the photos to enlarge)

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Developing Sporting Ability in Lincolnshire with Inspire+

July 19th, 2017 · No Comments · Events, Staff, Students, Support Projects

Gifted and talented primary school pupils in Lincolnshire recently attended a sport science themed day at the School of Sport and Exercise Science. Selected by their respected primary schools form across Lincolnshire, the children were supported by staff and students to develop a further understanding of sports psychology, fitness training and movement analysis.

inspire+
Images courtesy of Inspire+
 

This is the first year of this cluster of Lincolnshire schools attending sport science days after several years of success with South Lincolnshire-based schools. The programme is run in partnership with the charity Inspire+ who commission the School’s delivery of workshops. More information on Inspire+ and their Gifted and Talented schemes can be found here:

https://www.inspireplus.org.uk/online/index.php/educational/gifted-talented

Thank you to Geoff Middleton, who coordinates the days for the School, and all of the students and staff who contributed their time and expertise.

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Alex Jackson: British University Powerlifting Medallist!

April 7th, 2017 · No Comments · Staff, Students

Congratulations to Alex Jackson who took third place in a very competitive 72-kg class at the recent British University Powerlifting Championships. Alex achieved personal bests in all three lifts (Squat, Bench and Deadlift) including a British junior record of 178 kg in the Deadlift!
 
Alex, who is in her first year of the BSc (Hons) Strength & Conditioning in Sport programme, is also a Sports Scholar at the University and is coached by Senior Lecturer Tom Gee:

“My experience at the British University Championships was a positive one: I was able to compete against athletes of varying abilities and ages and did so successfully with the help of Tom Gee. To be able to compete through the University with a high-level coach at my side enabled me to produce a competitive performance that placed me third overall.”

British Uni Champs Podium
Alex on the podium for the 72-kg class

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SPOTS: Students Supporting University Sports

April 6th, 2017 · No Comments · Students

We are delighted to have partnered with SU Activities to launch the SPOTS (Science Practitioners Of Team Sports) scheme this year. A number of students from the School were selected – after an interview process – to provide sports science support to university sports teams, and have been working with them this term in a variety of roles.

Well done to the pioneering cohort of practitioners, who have been supporting the following clubs:

Stuart Kirk (Men’s Hockey)

Jack Dos Reis Silva (Rugby League)

Charlie Wanstall (Women’s Football)

Georgia Viggers (Lacrosse)

Jack Urwin (Volleyball)

SPOTS
This year’s SPOTS practitioners: Charlie, Georgia, Jack, Jack and Stuart

 

We are very grateful to SU Activities who have funded the scheme, and provided official hoodies and jackets. The School has been contributing use of equipment and laboratories, along with mentoring.

We hope to expand the scheme next year – keep an eye out for more details!

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Graduate Spotlight: Trev Mealing (YMCA Lincolnshire)

January 5th, 2017 · 1 Comment · Events

Congratulations to Trev Mealing who has been selected as Employee of the Year in the 2016 Lincolnshire Business Awards, in recognition of the work he has been doing with YMCA Lincolnshire. In addition to his own personal successes and progression, Trev’s selection reflected his significant contribution to the wider YMCA training team, who received the Excellence in Training award.

Trev (right) receiving his Employee of the Year award at the Lincolnshire Business Awards. (Photo: LincolnshireLive)
 

Trev started volunteering at the YMCA during the final year of his BSc (Hons) Sport & Exercise Science programme. After hearing about a friend’s positive experiences he signed up as a volunteer gym instructor, a position that he recalls “allowed me to develop my skills further, help special population gym members to achieve their goals, and put into practice some of the new academic theory that I was learning on my degree – a true win for all involved!” As his confidence grew Trev felt able to start using his initative and make suggestions about possible improvements to the services offered. In recognition of his contributions, Trev became a paid member of staff before being invited by Dan Rogers – Commercial Manager for YMCA Lincolnshire – to become a tutor in their new Teaching Centre. The success of this initiative resulted first in a full-time position and then in Trev becoming the Lead Tutor, managing the Centre as a Head of Department.

“In the four years of commercial operation we have managed to make a great deal of partnerships with other training and education provides in the county…and now have funded contracts to help support those most in need, in addition to our core area of delivery – nationally-recognised vocational fitness-based accreditations such as Level 2 Gym Instructor and Level 3 Personal Trainer.”

The School were delighted to invite Trev to deliver the keynote presentation for our recent Opportunities Fair. Sharing his career experiences to date and emphasising the benefits of volunteering, Trev encouraged students to believe in themselves and not always simply take the easiest option. “Work hard, ask questions, and never be afraid of asking for help! This will give you the best outcome! Hard work is always rewarded, sometimes not as instantly, or as we first envisage, but it will be rewarded!”

Trev fair
Trev delivering his keynote presentation to open the School’s Opportunities Fair
 

The Opportunities Fair provided the chance for students from across the School’s programmes to meet local employers and voluntary organisations, as well as seek guidance from the University’s careers and volunteering teams. The evening was a great success, with lots of contacts made and ideas exchanged, and we are very grateful to the following organisations for supporting the event: Lincolnshire Sport, Lincolnshire FA, Lincolnshire Council Volunteer Youth Services, University of Lincoln Sports Centre, Lincolnshire Scouts, Lincolnshire YMCA, OSB Events (Lincoln Half Marathon), Lincoln Golf Club, UoL Careers Team, Lincoln SU Activities and Volunteering Office.

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