Physical Education and Health in the Upper School

MFSPhysical education in the Upper School focuses on fitness, sports skills, cognitive development, and lifetime recreational pursuits. Having gained a broad foundation in the Lower and Middle School programs, students in the Upper School are presented with activities that encompass individual and dual sports (such as badminton and tennis), traditional team sports (soccer, flag football, floor hockey, basketball, team handball, and lacrosse), lifetime recreational activities (such as bowling, dance, golf, weight lifting, Frisbee, and volleyball), and activities that specifically address the five related fitness components (yoga, Pilates, and aerobics). Additional offerings are presented as student interest arises.

All physical education classes include appropriate warm-up and fitness-related activities. Of equal importance are the development of sportsmanship, cooperation, self-discipline, self-esteem, and a positive attitude toward physical fitness and physical endeavors.

Students in Grades 9, 11, and 12 also receive classroom instruction in Health and Wellness for one quarter each academic year. During Grade 10, we offer the 30-hour classroom component of Driver’s Education. Ninth grade students study mental and social health as well as substance abuse. Other topics discussed include depression, self-esteem, emotions, and drug use, misuse, and abuse. In Grade 11, the area of concentration is human sexuality. Components of the curriculum include reproduction, stages of pregnancy, and parenthood. Twelfth grade students concentrate on various health topics that apply to anyone transitioning to the greater independence afforded by college. Stress management and the mind/body connection are discussed, and students learn how to apply stress management skills. Other topics include current health issues in the news that will affect the emotional and social aspects of a student’s day-to-day interactions.

Many physical education and health courses are also offered as minors available to Grades 9-12.

Examples of Minor Courses

The American Red Cross course is designed to help students recognize and respond appropriately to cardiac, breathing, and first aid emergencies. The course teaches skills that the students need to know to give immediate care to a suddenly injured or ill person until more advanced medical personnel arrive and take over. Students who pass each of the three parts of the course will be certified for two years. The course comes with a fee of $20 for the membership cards.

Fitness and Wellness
This course is offered during the minor blocks and is in addition to the regular physical education/health program. It is designed to inform students about the benefits of lifelong fitness and overall wellness. Students will explore the intellectual, social and emotional benefits of fitness and wellness. This class is also designed so that students will have the opportunity to experience the following aspects of fitness programming and overall wellness assessment: fitness assessment, body composition, target heart rate, motor skills, flexibility, agility, aerobic exercise, and personal weight training. Students should be aware that this class requires a high level of physical activity.

Weight Training
This class is offered for all grades and levels of ability. Students will learn basic principles and practices of weight training. Students will also be asked to develop and modify an individual lifting program, which includes five strength-training exercises and cardiovascular fitness. Individual workout programs are designed so that each student can vary the intensity of their workout to fit their activity level and goals. Students will be assessed following each class on an individual basis, which includes proper exercise execution along with participating to the best of their ability. Students will also be assessed on their log sheets that document each individuals strength-training exercises and cardiovascular fitness for that class period. Any individual interested in a high-quality workout will benefit from taking this elective.