Hunters Hill Public School

Excellence in Learning for Success in Life

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Personal development, health and physical education

Personal development, health and physical education (PDHPE) is mandatory from Kindergarten to Year 10.

According to the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA), students are expected to participate in PDHPE for between 1.5 and 2.5 hours per week in Kindergarten to Year 6.

PDHPE provides students with opportunities to explore issues that are likely to impact on the health, safety and wellbeing of themselves and others – now and in the future. Students also participate in challenging and enjoyable physical activity, improving their capacity to move with skill and confidence.

The study of PDHPE is concerned with:

  • physical, social, cognitive and emotional growth and development patterns - Feelings of self-confidence and self-acceptance and the ability to act in the best interests of themselves and others are fostered by an understanding of the nature of life’s changes and the uniqueness of individual development.
  • the development and maintenance of positive interpersonal relationships - Successful interaction with others in contexts such as the family, peer group and teams is essential to meet the individual’s need for belonging and security. Students’ capacity to form relationships and cope with changes in relationships is influenced by understandings and skills in negotiation, conflict resolution, tolerance, roles, responsibilities and community expectations associated with friendships and relationships.
  • the factors influencing personal health choices - Young students need clear guidance concerning appropriate health attitudes and behaviours. As students mature they require assistance in discerning between conflicting messages from a range of sources. An understanding of health issues empowers students to make appropriate decisions and commit to adopting sound community values.
  • living and learning in a safe secure environment - The safety and security of children is enhanced when they can recognise situations where their personal safety may be at risk, and use strategies to protect themselves. When power is used positively in relationships, individuals can support their own and others’ rights to respect and safety.
  • the adoption of an active lifestyle - Physical activity habits developed in school years are often maintained in later life. Students need to understand the importance of a balanced lifestyle incorporating regular physical activity for health and fitness.
  • fundamental movement patterns and coordinated actions of the body - Children do not naturally develop fundamental movement skills as they grow. Opportunities should be provided for these skills to be taught, practised and encouraged. Having mastery of the Fundamental Movement Skills such as throwing, catching, running and jumping opens up a vast array of sport, leisure and recreation options for the individual. Skills are developed through play, dance, gymnastics, games, sports, aquatics and other recreational activities. The quality of movement is further enhanced through exploring, composing, performing and appreciating movement.
  • skills that enable action for better health and movement outcomes - Understanding about health and movement is utilised when students have the necessary ability and self-confidence. The skills of effective communication, interaction, decision making and problem solving and moving with efficiency and confidence empower students to take action leading to better health, improved performance and enhanced self-esteem.

Not all students will have the same degree of control over their health. Illness, disability and sociocultural circumstances will have significant impacts on health and the ability to affect change. However, an emphasis on these skills and understandings of those factors that influence health best prepares students to work towards better health for themselves and others.