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WHAT IS MEANT BY THE TERM GAME SENSE?

The notion of Game Sense refers to the innovative method of teaching that is
explored within the framework of PDHPE, directly relating to the physical
component of this key learning area. The Game Sense approach disregards the
need for skills to be developed prior to engaging in physical activity, and instead
focuses on skill development as a secondary concept to the game itself. The
practice of such a method provides a context in which students view the
development of skills and strategies more meaningful (Curriculum Support, n.d.).

Game Sense places an emphasis on the game itself by making it the central
focus of each lesson. By having students participate in games prior to developing
a certain degree of skill, it allows them to identify why certain rules and
regulations are followed within a sporting framework; contributing to the overall
success of the game (Curriculum Support, n.d.).

WHAT IS MEANT BY THE TERM GAME SENSE?

Game Sense employs a student-centred, inquiry-based approach to learning that


allows students to develop their own skills and understanding surrounding the
notion of physical activity, whilst simultaneously being actively involved in games
(Parry, n.d.).

Game Sense promotes learning via the platform of modified games or game-like
activities in order to develop decision-making and skills that work within the
context of a game. Skill development occurs at the same time as understanding,
with the modified games reducing the technical demands on the students so that
they can concentrate on the games as a whole. In this way game sense integrates
physical, intellectual and social learning. Children can understand similarities
between games and explore common principles (Parry, n.d.).

THE NOTION OF GAME SENSE ALIGNING WITH


THE NSW QUALITY TEACHING FRAMEWORK

The NSW Quality Teaching Framework (QTF) provides a framework in which high quality
teaching is encouraged universally across all key learning areas. This particular
framework focuses on teaching practices that contribute vastly to the improvement of
student-based learning outcomes (Light 2014).

The NSW QTF identifies three key dimensions associated with this high quality
pedagogical approach, these dimensions are as follows:

1. Is fundamentally based on promoting high levels of intellectual quality.


Intellectual quality is defined by its ability to facilitate a deep understanding of
Important, substantive concepts, skills and ideas and links learning to these core
concepts. When analyzing the Game Sense approach, the concept of intellectual
quality is embedded within this approach by focusing its learning specifically on the
core concepts associated with manipulating time and space in invasion games. It also
requires active construction of knowledge with students engaged in higher-order
thinking and communicating substantively about what they are learning (Light 2014).

THE NOTION OF GAME SENSE ALIGNING WITH


THE NSW QUALITY TEACHING FRAMEWORK
2. Is soundly based on promoting a quality learning environment.
In a high quality learning environment students and teachers work productively in an
environment that largely focuses on the quality of learning, similar to the Game Sense
approach. The standard of learning has high boundaries, and students are presented
with activities that are deemed challenging enough to extend and engage students, but
also tasks that have attainable results. By fostering a quality learning environment, a
positive relationship is promoted between teachers and students. This particular
environment allows students to contribute to what and how they learn, they are
engaged, self-regulating and self-directed and this is encouraged in Game Sense as
the learners adapt to this pedagogical approach (Light 2014).
3. Develops and makes explicit to students the significance of their work.
For learning to be viewed as significant, students must connect the relevance of what
and how they learn for living in their own worlds. It is evident when students
understand how broader and deeper learning developed in school is applicable in, and
useful for, life outside. From a Game Sense perspective this should go beyond the
tactical overlap between games practiced at school and sport played outside school to
include learning how to learn in all areas of life (Light 2014).

REAPING REWARDS

The implementation of Game Sense from a pedagogical perspective requires a


level of highly-focused participation from students, minimizing problematic
behavior whilst simultaneously promoting sports, and an active and healthy
lifestyle.

The concept of Game Sense allows for games to be adapted and manipulated to
suit the specific needs of all kinds of learners, as well as support the notion of
diversity within the classroom.

Game Sense as a method for teaching allows students to reflect positively on the
knowledge and skills acquired directly through the platform of physical
participation.

IMPLEMENTATION WITHIN THE CLASSROOM


When discussing the implementation of the Game Sense approach within 2Hs
classroom, it should be acknowledged that team games are categorized into the four
following categories:
1. Invasion Games: Consisting of games in which teams are eligible to score when they
move an implement into the opposing teams zone and successfully attack their goal/
target area. Soccer, basketball and football are just a few examples of sports that may
be categorized as invasion games.
2.

Target Games: Target games may be defined as games in which players score when an
object they have thrown or struck lands closest to a pre-determined target.

3. Court and Net Games: This category is fairly self explanatory and refers to games such
as volleyball, tennis, and badminton.
4. Striking and Fielding Games: Players on the batting team strike an object and attempt
to run between two points before the fielding team can recuperate the object, for
example cricket or softball.

GAME SENSE TASK


Sport: Volleyball 2 VS 2
Modified rules:
Commence game by instructing student to underarm lob the ball over the net.
When the ball reaches the other side of the net, you have to do a two-handed pass
to your team member prior to them underarm lobbing back to the opposition.
Repeat this back and forth.
Team loses a point if the ball hits the ground within the court dimension.
Key questions:
What is the purpose of the game?
Where can you position yourself within the court to try and minimize the chance of
the ball hitting the ground on your side?

GAME SENSE TASK (CONTINUED)


New rule for progression of game:
The second player (who receives the ball from their own team-mate) must do a
two-handed pass back to their team mate, who then underarm lobs the ball over
the net.
Additional key question:
Does the positioning of the opposition impact the positioning of you and your team
mate?
Further rule progressions:
Players must remain stationary (no feet movement) within the game.
Players must only use their dominant hand throughout the game.

REFERENCE LIST
Game sense approach to practical lessons. (n.d.). Retrieved 12 April, 2015, from
http://www.curriculumsupport.education.nsw.gov.au/secondary/pdhpe/assets/
pdf/pa_002.pdf
Light, R. (2014). Quality teaching beyond games through Game Sense pedagogy.
Federation University Australia. Retrieved from
http://sydney.edu.au/education_social_work/research/centres_and_networks/
ADPN/HMHCE-papers/resources/HMHCE_GS_Ed_Article_01_2014.pdf
Parry, K. (n.d.). A game centred approach for enhancing quality teaching and
improving student learning outcomes in PDHPE. Retrieved 12 April, 2015, from
https://www.det.nsw.edu.au/media/downloads/what.../parry.docx