At Highfields, Physical Education develops the children’s knowledge, skills and understanding, so that they can perform with increasing competence and confidence in a range of physical activities. These include dance, games, gymnastics, swimming and water safety, athletics and outdoor adventure activities. Physical education should provide opportunities for pupils to become physically confident in a way which supports their health and fitness. Opportunities to compete in sport and other activities build character and help to embed values such as fairness and respect.

Curriculum Intent

The aims of PE are to ensure that all pupils

  • develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities;
  • are physically active for sustained periods of time;
  • engage in competitive sports and activities;
  • lead healthy, active lives.

Curriculum Implementation

We use a variety of teaching and learning styles in PE lessons. Our principal aim is to develop the children’s knowledge, skills and understanding and we do this through a mixture of whole-class teaching and individual/group activities. Teachers draw attention to good examples of individual performance as models for the other children and we encourage the children to evaluate their own work as well as the work of other children. Within lessons we give the children the opportunity both to collaborate and to compete with each other, and they have the opportunity to use a wide range of resources.

In all classes there are children of differing physical ability. Whilst recognising this fact, we provide suitable learning opportunities for all children by matching the challenge of the task to the ability of the child. We achieve this through a range of strategies:

  • setting common tasks that are open-ended and can have a variety of results
  • setting tasks of increasing difficulty
  • grouping children by ability and setting different tasks for each group
  • providing a range of challenge through the provision of different resources

Curriculum Impact

PE is based on the National Curriculum Physical Education 2014 Document. The units are organised to provide progressive steps, which meet the end of key stage expectations and enrich the child's experience. In Key Stage 1, these include: dance, games, gymnastics and athletics. In Key Stage 2, these include: athletics, dance, games, gymnastics, outdoor adventure activities, swimming and water safety.  

The curriculum long-term plan maps out the PE activities covered in each term during the key stage.

The medium-term plans give details of each unit of work for each term. These plans define what we teach and ensure an appropriate balance and distribution of work across each term. The subject leader keeps and reviews these plans.

Class teachers complete a daily plan for each PE lesson. These list the specific learning objectives for each lesson and give details of how the lessons are to be taught. The class teacher keeps these individual plans, and the class teacher and subject leader often discuss them on an informal basis.

The PE activities are planned so that they build upon the prior learning of the children. While there are opportunities for children of all abilities to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding in each activity area, there is planned progression, so that the children are increasingly challenged as they move up through the school. There are also numerous opportunities for the children, from every year group, to compete in intra and inter-school competitions.

The Foundation Stage

We encourage the physical development of our children in the Reception class as an integral part of their work. We relate the physical development of the children to the objectives set out in the Early Learning Goals, which underpin the curriculum planning for children aged three to five years of age. We encourage the children to develop confidence and control of the way they move, and the way they handle tools and equipment. We give all children the opportunity to undertake activities that offer appropriate physical challenge, both indoors and outdoors, using a wide range of resources to support specific skills.

Contribution of PE to teaching in other curriculum areas


PE contributes to the teaching of English in our school by encouraging children to describe what they have done and to discuss how they might improve their performance.


ICT is used to support PE teaching when appropriate. In some units, in particular dance and gymnastics, children make video recordings of their performance, and use them to develop their movements and actions. They compare each other’s performance from recordings and use these to improve the quality of their work. 

Personal, social and health education (PSHE) and citizenship/Science

PE contributes to the teaching of personal, social and health education and citizenship. Children learn about the benefits of exercise and healthy eating, and how to make informed choices about these things.

Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development

The teaching of PE offers opportunities to support the social development of our children through the way we expect them to work with each other in lessons. Groupings allow children to work together and give them the chance to discuss their ideas and performance. Their work in general enables them to develop a respect for other children’s levels of ability and encourages them to co-operate across a range of activities and experiences. Children learn to respect and work with each other and develop a better understanding of themselves and of each other.

Files to Download