PGCE Students Given Lesson in Disability Sports

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The University of Worcester’s Primary PGCE students were put through their paces by the University’s disability sports coaching experts last week in order to expand their skills and confidence around inclusive PE lessons.

Staff from the University’s Institute of Sports and Exercise Science - including Glyn Harding, Principal Lecturer in Sports Coaching Science; Christian Edwards, Senior Lecturer in Sports Coaching Science; and Dave Mycock, Senior Lecturer in Sports Coaching Science and Great Britain Blind Football coach – gave around 250 students an introductory lesson in variety of disability sports.

Third year BSc Sports Coaching Development student, Mark Stevens, and first year Alex Giles also led sessions during the day.

The practical event, which followed a lecture in the subject, was designed to improve students’ confidence and knowledge in delivering disability PE sessions. This is the second year in which the sessions have taken place, but the first time that the Institute of Education has been able to utilise the inclusive facilities at the University of Worcester Arena.

Rachel Barrell, Course Leader in Primary Initial Teacher Education, said: “The fact that the University of Worcester has so many Disability Sports Coaching experts and has one of the most inclusive sporting facilities in the country gives our students a wonderful opportunity.”

Ann Jordan, Head of the Institute of Education added: “The ability to engage in cross-Institute working provides the very best model of teaching and learning, drawing on the expertise of highly specialised colleagues and makes an outstanding contribution to the overall teacher training programme.

“Working together with colleagues from the Institute of Sports and Exercise Science, we designed the sessions to give the students a real insight into a variety of disability sports and to equip them with the necessary tools to be able to deliver effective and enjoyable PE lessons for all pupils.

“The feedback we have had from students has been extremely positive, and we are very grateful to Glyn, Dave and their colleagues for the time and effort they put in to make the event a success.”

Blind football, boccia, wheelchair basketball, adapted curling and sitting volleyball were among the sports tested out by students, who were delighted to be given the opportunity to expand their knowledge in this area.

Student Craig Fortey explains: “I thought that the insight we were given into dealing with inclusive practices within schools was inspirational, and showed us how, with a little imagination, we could change the way in which children with special educational needs or disabilities can participate in mainstream PE.”

His fellow student, Samantha Nash, added: “I feel like I have been empowered by the session, and given the confidence and knowledge to ensure that all pupils within my class can be provided the opportunities to participate in all sports.”