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Children’s School Lives Study: Report 7

Children’s School Lives Study: Report 7

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Leaving Certificate Physical Education provides continuity and progression in physical education that begins in the learner’s early childhood education, through the Primary School Curriculum and junior cycle physical education.

The Aistear framework celebrates early childhood as  a time of wellbeing and enjoyment where children learn from experiences as they unfold. 
Under the theme of Wellbeing, physical wellbeing is recognised as being important for learning and development as it enables children to explore, to investigate, and to challenge themselves in the environment. A growing awareness of their bodies and physical abilities is part of this.

Physical education in the primary curriculum provides a balanced range of activities for children and encourages schools to adopt a flexible approach to planning for physical education. 

  • The curriculum includes six strands: athletics, dance, gymnastics, games, outdoor and adventure activities, and aquatics

Junior cycle physical education

  • Learners continue to develop their knowledge, skills and attitudes in physical education through the statements of learning which provide the basis for planning a new junior cycle.Of particular relevance are
  • Wellbeing is an area of learning in Junior Cycle. Physical Education is one of the four pillars in the Wellbeing curriculum. The NCCA Physical Education short course draws on the Junior Cycle Physical Education framework and includes learning outcomes which address the important learning in Junior Cycle Physical Education. By completing the short course students have the opportunity to include their learning on their Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement (JCPA).

SOL 12: The student is a confident and competent participant in physical activity and is motivated to be physically active.
SOL 11: The student takes action to safeguard and promote her/his wellbeing and that of others.
SOL 4: The student creates and presents artistic works and appreciates the process and skills involved.

Leaving Certificate Physical Education provides opportunities for learners to prepare for further study in a range of areas, for example, in the teaching, coaching and healthcare professions. In addition to its vocational value, students’ learning in physical education provides them with knowledge, skills and understanding that will support lifelong informed participation and/or the pursuit of excellence in their own sporting and physical activity pursuits.  The emphasis is on the development of key skills in Leaving Certificate Physical Education which will support learners’ effective engagement in a variety of further education opportunities where self-direction, leadership, organisational skills, and reflection are important.

Leaving Certificate Physical Education has the potential to make a significant contribution to enhancing learners’ commitment to lifelong participation in physical activity. Learners are encouraged to explore physical activity opportunities within and beyond the school. As they do so, they can become informed participants in physical activity as they reflect on the community and societal factors that support or hinder lifelong participation in physical activity. Learners are encouraged to act as advocates for physical activity both by their personal example and in their contribution to the various initiatives in sport and physical activity.

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