Perform Parkour - An Aesthetic Movement Unit
Most recently taught: April 2023
Key Concept: Aesthetics
Related Concepts: Balance, Movement, Choice
Statement of Inquiry: Choosing to move and balance our bodies in different ways can produce aesthetically pleasing performances
Global Context: Personal and Cultural Expression (products)
Learner Profile: Risk-takers (With parkour being fairly new to the students, they should look to challenge their body and creativity when demonstrating gymnastics skills)
In this unit, students explore the discipline of Parkour, expanding on their knowledge of gymnastics and using skills while free-running. Starting with the basics of rolling, jumping, balancing, and jumping, students will move to performing these skills over/under/around elements that increase the difficulty and add more excitement to their performances. Students will also learn vaulting, climbing, and quadrupel movements, combining all the movements above into video clips for their formative and then summative assessments. This parkour guide from @hugophysed helped provide ideas, games, and ensured that I touched on a range of skills correctly. As a way to celebrate students growth and provide greater opportunity for skill development I visited a local Ninja Warrior course where students were able to challenge themselves and get a lesson from a professional, using a variety of equipment not available at my international school.
Introduction to Parkour with youtube videos. Students rewatch with checklist to identify different skills
Forward rolling and quadrupel movement relays/games
Forward, backward, and safety roll practice
Quadrupel and bipedal movement review
Balance challenges, games, and balance beam movements
Jumping off of stage and small trampoline, first practicing safe landing, then into a roll.
Teacher led instruction of using various playground equipment to perform the above skills
Obstacle course races through the playground jungle gym.
Criteria B Formative Skill Clip assessment
Students should plan out their movements, practice, then get a partner to record the video clip.
Parkour games and challenges (Leap frog relay, balance jousting, jump the river)
Teacher led vault demonstration and student practicing (scaffolded - step vault and sit spin vault)
Field Trip to Ninja Warrior Gym
Students get lesson from a parkour professional and expand on their creativity of how and when to perform various skills
Review of all skills learned in this unit
Balancing while moving, rolling, jumping/landing, climbing, quadrupel movements, vaulting
Lesson 9 - 10
Students to work on their Summative Parkour Highlight Video
Students should complete written component while scouting and practicing skills, before recording and combining all clips into one video
Parkour related games student celebration of unit with sharing of summative videos.
Students to complete Criterion D Summative reflection
Choice time for students upon completion and submission of the reflection document
Teacher observation and student demonstration of each gymnastic skill ensure correct technique is safely used
After learning about balances, vaults, leaping, and quadupel movements students will explore the playground and plan where to perform the various parkour skills. For criterion B students will combine the various skills together (ex. leap off bench into forward roll) and create a highlight clip video.
Peer assessment of skills on ground before moving to more challenging features of the playground
Students will create a parkour highlight video (Criterion B) of them demonstrating various parkour skills around our school campus. They should include all the necessary skills learned in class, creatively using the campus to demonstrate the techniques. The goal is to create an aesthetically pleasing video using these traditional skills and combine all the clips together.
Students will also summatively reflect on their experiences in this unit for Criterion D. They will analyse their self-management skills, how well they performed and whether their summative plan was effective at demonstrating their learning.
ATL’s focused on in this unit
Social - Take responsibility for one’s own actions
In order for students to plan for performance (Criteria B): students will take responsibility for one's own actions by being the performer and planner for their highlight clips. As the only member in their videos they will be encouraged to share their personal vision and combine skills to the best of their ability.
The strategy that will be explicitly taught is:
- take responsibility for one’s own actions: students will self-assess their own skills throughout the unit, recognizing their limits and finding the right level of risk-taking to keep their skills challenging yet safe.
Thinking - Identify obstacles and challenges
In order for students to reflect and improve performance (Criteria D): students will identify obstacles and challenges by participating in class discussions, trying a variety of skills, using different features of the playground and ninja warrior gym.
The strategy that will be explicitly taught is:
- identify obstacles: encouraging students to identify a time they failed at performing what they had planned, sharing with a partner where exactly it went wrong
- identify challenges: students will need to recognize which of the numerous parkour skills pushed them to be more of a risk-taker, and what was difficult to perform during the summative assessment video.
Teacher Reflection (April 2023 Reflection)
Students were a bit tentative using the playground features to perform their parkour skills at first, but teacher led demonstrations and confident student demonstrations helped as the unit progressed.
Their was a good mix of skills to be learned, revised, or challenged for students to add difficulty to. I felt every student was able to be a risk-taker in a different way whether it be through jumping from heights, performing more challenging rolls, or combining different skills.
My school lacked good equipment for vaulting so I would try to get a vaulting box for this unit in the future.
The nearby ninja warrior gym was an instant favourite amongst the students (some already had done an afterschool club there) so check out if your area has a gymnastics or ninja warrior field trip possibility.
Thoughts, questions, concerns? Let me know on twitter @tannernickel, I am always looking for ideas and ways to improve my inquiry teaching.