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Consultation on the Primary Curriculum now open

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Expectations for Students/Learning outcomes


Expectations for students

Expectations for students is an umbrella term that links learning outcomes with annotated examples of student work. For NCCA developed short courses, in some cases examples of work associated with a specific learning outcome or with a group of learning outcomes will be available. Schools who design their own short courses may wish to create a bank of examples of student work for discussion and for future reference.


Learning outcomes

Learning outcomes are statements that describe what knowledge, understanding, skills and values students should be able to demonstrate having completed this junior cycle short course in PE. The learning outcomes set out in the following tables apply to all students and represent outcomes for students at the end of their period of study (approximately 100 hours).


The outcomes are numbered within each strand. The numbering is intended to support teacher planning in the first instance and does not imply any hierarchy of importance across the outcomes themselves.



Students learn about Students should be able to
1 How to monitor and improve their physical fitness
  1. 1.1

    ​set SMART improvement goals informed by their health-related and/or performance-related fitness results and advised by norms for their age and sex

  2. 1.2

    apply principles of training within a personalised physical activity programme (minimum duration of six weeks) designed to improve their health-related and/or performance-related fitness, documenting their progress

  3. 1.3

    evaluate their engagement and progress in the programme, providing evidence of progress made and identifying ways they can further develop

Students learn about Students should be able to
2 Physical activity for all
  1. 1.4

    use a range of measurement techniques to monitor and analyse physical activity levels across a sustained period of time

  2. 1.5

    identify a range of strategies to support ongoing participation in health-related physical activity

  3. 1.6

    ​lead physical activities that young people find enjoyable and can undertake to achieve the minimum physical activity recommendations forhealth

Students learn about two of the games categories.

Students learn about Students should be able to
1 Invasion games
  1. 2.1

    use a wide range of movement skills and strategies effectively to enhance their performance

Students learn about Students should be able to
2 Striking and fielding games
  1. 2.2

    take responsibility for improving their own performance based on personal strengths and developmental needs

  2. 2.3

    modify activities to promote inclusion and enjoyment in a safe manner

Students learn about Students should be able to
3 Divided court games
  1. 2.4

    demonstrate activities to enhance their health-related and/or performance-related fitness for the particular game, including warm-up and cool down

  2. 2.5

    respond, individually and as part of a team to different games’ scenarios

Students learn about two of the physical activity areas.

Students learn about Students should be able to
1 Orienteering and team challenges
  1. 3.1

    use orienteering strategies and map-reading skills to complete a variety of orienteering events safely and confidently, showing respectfor the environment

  2. 3.2

    contribute to team challenges that require co-operation and problem-solving skills to achieve a common goal

  3. 3.3

    reflect on their personal contribution and their teameffectiveness in completing a group challenge

Students learn about Students should be able to
2 Aquatics
  1. 3.4

    perform competently and confidently in a range of swimming strokes

  2. 3.5

    respond appropriately to a range of water safety scenarios

  3. 3.6

    take responsibility for improving their own performance, based on personal strengths and developmental needs

Students learn about Students should be able to
3 Athletics
  1. 3.8

    demonstrate activities to enhance performance in athletic events, including physical and mental preparation

  2. 3.9

    take responsibility for improving their own performance, based on personal strengths and developmental needs

  3. 3.7

    perform competently, confidently and safely in a range of athletics events

Students learn about either gymnastics or dance in this strand.

Students learn about Students should be able to
1 Creating a sequence of movement: 4.1 or 4.2
  1. 4.1

    create a dance on their own or with others, incorporating a selected dance style and a variety of choreographic techniques and suitable props and music

  2. 4.2

    create a sequence of movement or routine based on a gymnastic theme (on their own or with others), incorporating a variety of compositional techniques and gymnastics skills

Students learn about Students should be able to
2 Reflecting on performance
  1. 4.3

    refine their performance based on a critique of a video of their performance and/or feedback from others

Students learn about Students should be able to
3 Performing
  1. 4.4

    perform the dance/gymnastics sequence of movement for an audience incorporating appropriate music and/or props

  2. 4.5

    reflect on their experience of creating and participating in a performance

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