Thursday, 1 November 2012

Social Issues In Sport Enterprise Day

Just after Easter I walked up to my Head teacher and asked if I could run an enterprise day about the social issues in sport (Looking particular at Race, Gender, Sexuality, Religion)  I wanted to think big and make the day as interactive as I could with guest speakers and activities which the students would engage with.

The day involved Key Stage three so I wanted to make the activities appropriate for each year group.

Years 7s spent time looking at what are the characteristics of a positive role model are.  This was initiated by the students doing a diamond9 of characteristics of role models they began in groups by finding the 87 key words about role models (there is not 87 but if I said to the kids find as many as you can they would stop at 15, by putting a high number on it, generally the kids will react in the following way ‘no way is there 87 words!! But they then begin to think a little more creatively).  They will also start cheating and try to copy other tables but this isn’t a problem as they are still learning! Yes that’s right cheating is progress!!!

When they begin to reach around 50 you can sense their attention waning so allow them to have a spy in each group.  The spy will walk around the room trying to look for answers other groups have which his team could copy and add them on.  Once at 87 ask them as a group to rotate around all of the other groups trying to pick up ideas.  When returning to their own list they now need to pick out the 10 key words and write them onto a post it note.  They then discuss each key word and place them into a diamond9 (discarding the tenth word).

Split the group into two, one stays with their own diamond 9 and the other group rotates around each of the other diamind9s it is their aim to try and change the other diamond9.  After this has been done the class should all generally agree on what a good role model is.

I then gave each class 6 biographies from the sporting world

Joey Barton
David Beckham
Jessica Ennis
Victoria Pendleton
Didier Drogba
Michael Jordan

Each class discussed these when compared to their own individual set of characteristics as I was running the day I tried to call into as many classes as I could to see the quality of answers.  One student’s response will always stick in my head as it was quality! He said that Andrew Flintoff must be a positive role model even though he was involved in the fred-alo incident because he does the morrisons and jacamo adverts.  If worded a little better that could and would  be a fantastic answer about role models for a GCSE PE exam so I was pleased with how the year 7s element of the day panned out/

The year 8s had a look at gender and how an important role it plays they created a solo double bubble hot map about the different perceptions of women in sport, the stereotypical views of women throughout the year and how that has changed, this section I didn’t feel work as well as I hoped and my initial thoughts were that the students had not really grasped the initiative and didn’t really go deep into the learning.  However when I returned to school in September I couldn’t believe how many of the students spoke to me about women in sport although I think this was largely down to the success of the amazing women in team GB.

The year 9s split into three sections, they were either looking at race, religion or sexuality. 

The students who were looking at race met a company called FURDS (Football Unites Racism Divides) these are a Sheffield based charity and I would strongly recommend you get then into school they were fantastic and discussed issues with the students who in turn struck up a good debate within the environment.  This is one of the key things I wanted to develop during the day = students looking at a serious issue and discussing it with levels of maturity.  FURDS also brought in a giant inflatable football pitch which the students also loved!

For more information on FURDS please visit

The religion discussion was lead by Bruce Dyer, Brice is genuinely one of the nicest people I know and as I am a Barnsley fan he also is a bit of a hero of mine! Bruce came into school and discussed Christianity and how his religion helped him through sport.  He also runs a charity called love life and works tirelessly to give people the chances they deserve more information on love life can be found here

The final section was the sexuality in sport part, I wanted to really get the students talking and discussion the issues and I had mixed responses, some really positive however some students just switched off and did not want to discuss it at all.  The stimulus I used for this was the BBC documentary about homophobia in football.  The students worked independently to write down their thoughts of the video before discussing it in a class setting. 

Overall I feel the day was a success – I wanted students to be discussing the issues and forming their own balanced opinion and I think I achieved that. It was nerve wracking at times as it was the first time I have done anything like that but I would do it again and would recommend it to anyone!

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