Physical Education and Health » Elementary


Welcome to the “Physical Education Framework” for grades K – 6 in the Cranston Public 

Schools in Cranston, Rhode Island.  This revised framework was developed as a reference document for identifying content, program standards, scope, sequence and benchmarks for physical education from Kindergarten through 12th grade.  

This reference document provides descriptions of the knowledge and skills that students should acquire through a stated sequential, developmental approach. The original Cranston Physical Education framework was written in the year 2000 to answer the question:

“What should Cranston Public Schools’ children know and be able to do

in the area of physical education?”

This newly revised curriculum document builds on the work of the past and adds current research in the field of physical education and health related issues which face our children today. The intent of this curriculum guide is to continue to support our schools’ program by establishing not only the required goals and objectives for physical education, but also to guide excellence in the instruction and learning.  Because content knowledge is the focus of this curriculum guide, it describes the knowledge that our students should have upon completion of each grade level, rather than describing activities or lessons that might be used to guide teaching and learning.  It is a standards based framework to be used as a resource for the delivered/taught curriculum.

The  effective use of this framework for  the Cranston Public Schools Elementary Physical Education 

Program relies heavily on the following three reports:

  • “Moving Into the Future: National Standards for Physical Education (1995), 
  • The Rhode Island Framework: Supporting Physically Active Lifestyles Through Quality Physical Education,” (2003) and 
  • the “Illinois Department of Education/Evanston/Skokie School District 65/Physical Education Curriculum Guide/Grades Kindergarten Through Sixth Grade.”

In addition,  this Physical Education curriculum addresses the vision of the Rhode Island General Assembly, Section 1622-4 of the General Laws of Rhode Island for Physical Education programs in Rhode Island.

Physical Education contributes to the total growth and development of the individual, i.e., physical, intellectual, social and emotional growth. Furthermore, student development in the psychomotor, cognitive and affective domains may be positively affected by quality physical education programs.

According to “Healthy People 2010,”  physical activity and fitness report from the  Surgeon General fo the United States:

“Young people are at particular risk for becoming

sedentary as they grow older.  Therefore, encouraging moderate and vigorous physical activity among youth is important.  Because children spend most of their time in school, the type and amount of physical activity encouraged in schools are important components of a fitness  program and healthy lifestyle.”

What is a Physical Education Program?  Like all school programs, Physical Education derives learning and performance outcomes from identifiable subject matter knowledge.  This subject matter knowledge begins with various kinds of exercises, games, sports, and dances that students perform.  Like music, art, and theatre, Physical Education is first and foremost a performance based subject requiring students to directly experience, as performers, its subject matter knowledge.  In other words, it is through specified performances that students learn the subject matter knowledge.  It is not just a matter of  “running around the gym.”  It is a matter of knowing what is happening to your body and to you as a result of running around the gym.  It is knowledge of personal performance, and the performances of others, that builds knowledge and skills.  Students completing Physical Education programs not only know how to do selected exercises, games, sports, and dances, but also have enhanced understanding of their personal performances in these and, indeed, of themselves as they develop with experiences over time (school years).

A quality program provides a variety of active, enjoyable, and safe ways for students to learn.  It accommodates a variety of learning and performance abilities, and, where possible, offers individualized instruction for students.  There are planned instructional/learning progressions, both within and across grade levels (horizontal and vertical articulation), and regular assessments of student learning performance progression.  Data are used to enhance student’s development and to make program revisions.