Virtual Phys Ed: PrepNet Teacher Inspires Students with Cross-Curricular Videos, Instruction

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. , June 21, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Teaching an online physical education class is an effort in enthusiasm and mental preparedness for PrepNet Virtual Academy Teacher Celia Licht. PrepNet is part of National Heritage Academies, a charter school management company in Grand Rapids, Mich., and Licht has found that teaching a physically focused subject online has made her more mentally tired.

She would have it no other way.

Licht started her NHA teaching career at Laurus Academy in Southfield, Mich. and transitioned to PrepNet after developing an affinity for virtual instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic. For her, teaching physical movement online is more mentally demanding than in-person instruction.

"I work a billion times harder virtually than I did in person with lesson planning because I've got three monitors right now, and each one has a specific setup that I tab through," Licht said. "It's all a process. I need to be 100% present and give them my all. It's much more mentally demanding than physically demanding."

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At first, Licht used content from other teachers online, but quickly decided she could add to her skillset by creating her own videos. She started her own YouTube channel called Detroit PE and added an accompanying website called The Physical Education Teacher.

"My early videos, they're not that great," Licht said. "But as I've progressed, I think I've gotten pretty good at it and lots of PE teachers and other teachers use them because there's a lot of brain breaks in there you can do in the classroom. It's just something I started and kept working on."

After talking to her teacher friends, she started to make her videos cross-curricular, combining questions about topics she knew students had learned in other classes. Correct and incorrect answers resulted in different exercises or stretches to perform.

"We learn the sports, but we have to do it a different way," Licht said. "So, we'll learn the content with lots of fun videos where they can understand the rules and it shows them what to do. So, if we're learning soccer, they're playing games with household items. Everything can be modified, I tell them, so they're still getting their physical activity in.

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Licht said she wishes her students could play the whole game together, but she can teach them the pieces so hopefully they'll take those skills and want to go outside after school or in the summer and try to play.

"The goal is to just keep them active by giving them the skills and the tools that they need, but honestly, I love it."

PrepNet Virtual Academy is part of NHA, a charter school management company in Grand Rapids, Mich. with 98 tuition-free, public charter schools across nine states, serving more than 60,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade.

SOURCE National Heritage Academies
Filed Under: Business

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