During my last post I discussed a very valuable curriculum model that served as the building block for elementary physical education. While this curriculum model is certainly valuable especially to young students today we will be discussing a different curriculum model that is used primarily in both middle and high school physical education. The model we will be discussing today is called the Tactical Approach. Personally, the tactical approach is my favorite model and the model I use most in my classroom. As we discuss first its proper implementation and then its benefits, I will show how this model certainly has a positive effect on a students learning outcome.
The way this model is structured is the teacher presents a game, followed by a skill, and then the reintroduces a game. While this may sound straight forward, in order for it to be effective much more needs to go into its implementation. When a teacher presents the first game or activity they are supposed to limit their instructions to allow critical thinking and problem solving to take place. For example, if my focus of that day was passing I might ask the students to pass the ball four times between their team successfully. In these instructions I would leave out using the instep of the foot, game strategies such as the give and go all in hope that the students will use these skills on their own. After the students participate in the activity a discussion must make place to see how the students went about solving the problem. After the discussion it is up to the teacher to introduce the skills necessary to participate effectively. In this case the focus would be on passing with the instep of your foot and using the give and go to create open space. After the class has done their skill work it is up to the teacher to reintroduce the game and have the student’s use the skills practiced in class and carry them over into game play.
As you can see the Tactical Approach certainly benefits student learning because of the emphasis on appropriate timing and skill practice. What I like most about this model is the ability to teach student’s skills, tactics, as well as rules for game play all in the confines of a lesson. By applying game related motor skills and movement concepts students feel confident participating in activities not only in physical education class but for the rest of their life. If students do not understand the game as well as the skills involved then their ability to identify and execute the correct technique is impaired. Knowledge is power and by using this model educators are allowing their students to be successful by teaching them all the necessary skills for participation. I speak from experience when I say this model truly benefits student learning outcomes.
Here is a great article on the Tactical Approach. Please let me know your thoughts about the Tactical Approach and if you find it effective or not.