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    Two years ago the Seattle Public Schools Physical Education Program began implementing a new curriculum called “Five for Life” in a select number of schools. Now, in 2009-10 all Seattle Public Schools are using the Five for Life curriculum. Seattle Physical Education has long been a leader with a strong success-oriented motor skills based program. Seattle Public Schools is raising the bar with the addition of Five for Life, an innovative fitness and health curriculum. This K-12 program is designed to engage students in fun, meaningful lessons that promote activity, proper nutrition and higher levels of fitness. Seattle Public Schools is committed to providing a quality Physical Education program that builds knowledge, fitness, movement skills, social well-being and confidence, so all students can enjoy a healthy active lifestyle.

    Understanding how fitness affects general long-term health and performance will empower students to make informed decisions about their lives. The goal is to provide students with a variety of fitness experiences, so they can manage their personal fitness.

    As part of this curriculum, students will receive developmentally appropriate instruction in topics such as: the five components of health-related fitness, goal setting, nutrition, the skeletal system, the muscular system, and training principles. In Physical Education your child will also participate in fitness measurements to evaluate their current fitness levels in the five components of fitness, which include: cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility and body composition. Your child’s fitness levels are compared to minimum health related standards that have been developed for children of the same age and gender.

    Fitness measurements consist of three phases: pre-measurements, goal setting and post measurements. Phase one is the pre-measurements. Its purpose is to gather information about the student’s beginning fitness levels. By finding their starting point, students develop an awareness of their own fitness and health. It is important that students do not view this as a competition, but rather a starting point to improve personal fitness levels.

    The goal-setting phase is an essential part of your child understanding his/her own fitness and how to improve it. During this phase, students set realistic goals for cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance and flexibility. After the goals are set, students begin to work towards improvement using curriculum that is specifically designed to help them reach their goals.

    Near the end of the year or the term post-measurements are taken. The purpose is to gather data that demonstrates the student’s fitness progress. All students have the opportunity to take pride in achieving their personal goals. Parents will receive
    two student/parent reports: one after pre measurements and another after postmeasurements. These reports will track student’s progress in achieving personal fitness goals and will also confirm their achievements.

    All Seattle Public Schools will complete the following fitness measurements:

    • Mile Run/Walk – This measurement assesses cardiorespiratory endurance. The mile run/walk is a timed distance measurement used to assess the endurance of the heart and lungs.
    • Curl-Ups – This measurement determines the muscular endurance and strength in the abdominals and hips. In this activity, students will perform as many proper curl-ups as possible in one minute.
    • Push-Ups – This measurement of upper body muscular strength and endurance is performed by doing as many proper push-ups as possible.
    • Sit & Reach – This measurement determines the flexibility of the hamstrings and lower back.
    • Body Mass Index (BMI) – BMI is a tool used to identify growth patterns in populations. It is derived from height, weight, age and gender. It is also a tool that can be used by parents to help them understand the growth patterns of their children over time.

    Protocols and standards for the above fitness measurements are derived from the President’s Challenge Physical Fitness and Activity Program.

    This systematic approach to the development of fitness begins to build a value of how to maintain or improve individual fitness. Measurements are discreetly recorded and a personal fitness report is generated to provide you with a snapshot of your son’s or daughter’s current fitness levels.

    Another aspect of the Seattle Public Schools Physical Education program change is the addition of WELPRO, a fitness assessment software. WELPRO provides physical educators with a tool that gathers student fitness and health data over the course of their enrollment and communicates those results to students, parents, and administrators via a web-based application. WELPRO is a secure website to protect student privacy. 

    Please encourage and assist your child to improve their level of fitness by participating with them in physical activities and making healthy choices about the foods you eat.