Health Ed

HEALTH ED: How much time do you spend sitting?

I saw the below infographic on instagram a while back. My initial reaction was “Wow, 15 hours is a lot of sitting!!” I thought it would great to use something similar to this in my year 7 health unit focused on Fitness. I liked that it was visual, simple, and made the hours we spend sitting ‘stand out’. Something I don’t think many people give much thought to. Especially since we often focus on the minutes of activity people should be doing. I thought this was an interesting take on the ‘same old’ message we’ve seen many times before. Heres a brief outline of the lesson that came about thanks to the above graphic.

  1. Just Dance “Good Feeling” – Instant engaging activity to start the lesson. Dimmed the lights, closed the blinds and cranked the air con. Invited students into class, put gear down on desk, stand behind chair and face the board. Hit play and danced (and sang) along. (Referred to this ‘aptly title’ song over the lesson – used it as a gauge of intensity – “how did that dance make you feel”)
  2. Small group work – In groups of 4-5. Each group was given a question to answer. Each group nominated a ‘scribe’ (to take notes) and a ‘speaker’ (to provide answer to entire class). I gave them 3 minutes to quickly discuss the question and come up with an answer. We then shared the answers as a class:
    1. What is physical activity and how is if different to incidental activity. Intentional activity (ie. going for a jog) versus unintentional (i.e. walking to the bus), or, for exercising for an extended time (walking the dog at the park) versus exercising for very short timeframe (ie. walking to the canteen at recess)
    2. Describe low, moderate and vigorous intensity physical activity. Focus on heart rate and breathing rate differences between each. Rate the “Just Dance” activity – was it low, moderate or vigorous? Compare that activity to other activities they do. How does vigorous activity ‘feel’ compared to low activity.
    3. How much physical activity should someone your age do a day? What about your parents? And grandparents?
      1. 60mins for people their age.
      2. 30mins physical activity a day + as much incidental activity as possible each day + 3 x 30min vigorous activity a week for their parents. 
      3. 30mins physical activity a day for people their grandparents age.
  3. My Daily Activity worksheet – Students then spent the lesson trying to answer the question “Am I active enough” but breaking down their day into four categories: sleep, sitting, incidental activity and physical activity. They started by breaking down their day via a table, then put their final hours/mins into a pie graph. The focus was on creating a visual representation of their day – so they could see how most of their day is taken up by sitting and sleeping – something very evident on the pie graph (and got a few “whoa” responses from the group when they saw it). The majority of the class met the 60minutes of physical activity a day because the majority also play after school sports. We finished by discussing how the ‘pie graph might look for their parents, a year 11 student, and someone who doesn’t play an after school sport. A few gems that came out of the discussion:
    • “Year 7s get to do dance and phys ed but year 11s don’t (unless they chose it as an option) so they aren’t as active at school (equates to around three hours a week)”
    • “People who don’t play sport are maybe more likely to go home and sit in front of TV or computer”
    • “My Dad starts work at 8 and finishes at 5. He has an office job. That means he’s probably sitting at work for 9 hours”
    • “I might do 30minutes of homework a night but my brother in year 12 is sitting down studying for 2-3 hours each night.”

2 thoughts on “HEALTH ED: How much time do you spend sitting?

  1. Pingback: HEALTH ED: Physical activity makes ‘The Arrow’ a hero | Move Eat Teach

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