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The Physiology of Fitness High School Classroom Unit

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Portable Document Format
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4.7 out of 5 stars from 3 ratings.
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Description This unit covers aspects of cardiovascular and respiratory physiology that are important in exercise and fitness. It is designed to provide students with a scientific basis for understanding “fitness” — especially why it varies between individuals, and how one can improve their fitness. The unit can be used as an integrative review of these topics, or selected activities could be used to introduce some of the topics. It was designed by a team of high school teachers and research physiologists to be useful for “Health” or “Physical Education” classes, as well as “AP Biology” or “Anatomy and Physiology” classes. However, it assumes a basic knowledge of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems as a prerequisite. The unit utilizes the Learning Cycle approach (Karplus & Thier, 1967; Lawson, 1988), where various modules can be used to engage students in thinking about the topic(s); offer them opportunities to explore via hands-on and inquiry approach activities; explain their findings and how they relate to the concepts included in the unit; elaborate on the concepts; and evaluate students’ understanding of the unit concepts. The modules are designed to teach the students general physiological principles that are based on physical principles applied to living systems, and are suitable for coordinated science classes, linking physical and biological principles. An important educational objective of the unit is that students should be able to apply the general principles they learn for one organ system to a different system.
Type of Resource Lesson Plan
Format Portable Document Format - PDF
Technical Note Adobe Acrobat
Frank Powell, University of California-san Diego
Nancy Aguilar, Scripps Institute of Oceanography
Ana Alvarez, Hoover High School
Stephanie Baron, Patrick Henry High School
Shauna Brammer, La Jolla High School
Jeff Graham, Scripps Institute of Oceanography
Cheryl Mason, San Diego State University
Gary Oden, San Diego City Schools
Russell Richardson, University of California, San Diego
Development Date January 1, 1997
Grade/Age Levels High School lower division (Grades 9-10)
High School upper division (Grades 11-12)
National Science
Educational Standards
Behavior of organisms (9-12), Personal and community health (9-12)
Learning Time 6-9 hours
Language English
Type of Review Reviewed By Staff
Review Date January 12, 2007
Suggested Use

This is a great collection of ideas that anyone teaching life science or physical education could use at least part of in their work to make the notion of fitness seem like a real and valuable component of a person's life.  It helps bridge the gap between someone simply telling you "exercise is good for you" to proving how valuable exercise is.  

Dan Bartsch, Billings Senior High

Important to incorporate personal fitness from an early age. I like the hands-on activities and the inquiry approach.
Jane Raabis, North High School

This material has been used extensively and is described online at http://www.cfkeep.org/html/snapshot.php?id=38239301683604 by a group who would like to know who else uses these materials. Feel free to contact us to share ideas!
Nancy Pelaez, California State U., Fullerton


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