It’s a new normal for sport at Dulwich Prep London. Coming back in September, we knew that our teaching style would be impacted by the new social distancing measures. Often we find that anything new or different can be seen either as a threat to the status quo or as an opportunity. The DPL sports team chose the latter, and determined to embrace the new normal and venture down the path less trodden.
With excitement, and perhaps a little apprehension, we kickstarted a new programme based upon our three core sporting principles which define ‘the why’ of our programme: participation, challenge and aspiration.
Working within government and National Governing Bodies guidelines, we adapted our PE, games, sports clubs and Saturday morning provision, all based upon multi-sport rotations, choice, improved physical literacy, leadership and mental skills.
Our boys have embraced the opportunity to participate in their new programme and have thrived, both physically and mentally. House sport has replaced the traditional inter school fixtures, choice has replaced selection and boys have understood the importance of multi-sport, particularly at the foundation stage of athletic development.
We remain certain that the positive outcomes and the new opportunities we have experienced during the lockdown sport and Covid-19 recovery programmes this term have only strengthened us as a community. For DPL sport in particular, they are:
- That blended learning works and our boys enjoy it.
- Teaching “process over outcome” to our boys is essential.
- Mental skills and leadership should be stand-alone topics, explicitly taught.
- Competitiveness can be achieved without a fixture.
- Collaboration with teachers and pupils from other schools has huge benefits and rewards.
Sport plays a huge role in keeping our staff, pupils and community mentally, emotionally and physically healthy. Within an ever-changing environment we’ll continue to try to embrace any challenges that lie ahead.