Early childhood physical education includes movement through play, dance, athletic activities, drama, and building (Catches and throws balls, skips, rides bike, jumps, runs, balance beam, flexibility etc…). Lessons focus on two components: Health Related Fitness (Cardiovascular stamina, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility and body composition) and Skill Related Fitness (Coordination, Balance, Dexterity, Power, Speed and Response time).
Brain Fact: Physical development requires the activation from several areas in the brain including the cerebellum, basal ganglia, motor cortex and parietal lobes. These innate systems develop at an early level for survival.
Physical Development Fact: “97 % of all learning takes place from the neck down. The brain is activated when the whole body moves.” Play… the foundation that supports the house of higher learning-Murphy
Health Fact: According to the CDC approximately 1/3 of children in the US are considered overweight or obese. Between 1980 and 2008 obesity rates in children aged of 6-11 rose from 6.5% to 19.6 %. Obesity rates in children 2-5 increased from 5% to 12.4% between 1980 and 2006. Obese children are at increased risk for asthma, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, orthopedic problems, sleep problems and psychological problems. Inactive preschoolers are at greater risk of entering first grade with increased body fat, which tends to continue through adulthood. A 2005 reports found the cost to our health care system due to childhood obesity increased from $34 million in 1979 to over $127 million in 2000 (latest report noted). Center for Disease Control