What is the difference between PE, School Sport and Physical Activity?

What is the difference between PE, School Sport and Physical Activity?

For parents taking on the responsibility of home schooling their children it is important that we highlight the difference between PE, School Sport and Physical Activity. Whilst they all include physical movement there are some important differences as outlined by the Association for PE;

Physical Education (PE) – is the planned, progressive learning that takes place in lessons and which is delivered to all pupils. This involves both ‘learning to move’ (i.e. becoming more physically competent) and ‘moving to learn’ (e.g. learning through movement, a range of skills and understandings beyond physical activity, such as co-operating
with others). The context for the learning is physical activity, with children experiencing a broad range of activities, including sport and dance.

School Sport – is the structured learning that takes place outside of lessons (i.e. break/lunch times/after school) within school settings; this is sometimes referred to as out-of-school-hours learning. Again, the context for the learning is physical activity (e.g clubs, fixtures, matches, events). The ‘school sport’ programme has the potential to develop and broaden the foundation learning that takes place in physical education. It also forms a vital link with ‘community sport and activity’.

Physical Activity – is a broad term referring to all bodily movement that uses energy. It includes all forms of physical education, sports and dance activities. However, it is wider than this, as it also includes indoor and outdoor play, work-related activity, outdoor and adventurous activities, active travel (e.g. walking, cycling, rollerblading, scooting) and routine, habitual activities such as using the stairs, doing housework and gardening.

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