Skills and Tactics – from paper to practice

I’m working on a Year 10 PASS theory unit on Improving Performance. One of the topics we cover is using skills and tactics as a way to improve individual and team performance.
In planning the learning for this, I wanted to made the learning real and visible, not just theoretical and abstract. I came up with something that could be done in one lesson, maybe two.
1. I started with a quick introduction – a Google Presentation about what we were doing in the lesson

2. Then I showed a stimulus video on strategy and tactics in a Netball setting

2. We had a quick discussion about the difference between a tactic and a strategy

3. I then got the class to form groups of 5 (maximum), and using mini whiteboards, they devised a tactic for basketball, rugby league or football

Rugby League Play

Football Play

Basketball Play


The students transferred these group ideas to individual sheets for their portfolio

4. We then went out to the courts and the students rehearsed the tactic (it was raining, which stopped us using the fields for the football groups)

5. I started to film the group performing their tactic for their portfolios. (I’ll include some in a follow up post)

OK – I missed completing the whole thing in one lesson (i.e. filming every group) by about 20 minutes, and the groups could have done with more rehearsal time to perfect the movements, but we got close to going from paper to practice in 5 steps in about an hour.

The take away for me was the enthusiasm the students showed in being given the license to create their own scenario and solution. The elegant way that some groups went about devising their solution was inspiring.
So much better than reading about someone else’s plays, or copying down notes.
Never underestimate the ability of students to ask good questions and find great solutions.

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4 thoughts on “Skills and Tactics – from paper to practice”

  1. I my self want to be a coach and for any coach to know there are many tactics and strategy’s used in a single game. I know when I had to help my old high school wrestling team there was this team that always threw in legs to our wrestlers. In between one match I had to take most of our wrestlers aside to show them how to counter and what not to do to get in that situation in a match. So I myself have used many tactics and strategies to defeat an opponent.

  2. Hey, Mr. Jones, I am Isaac Wiggins. I am currently a student at the University of South Alabama and is enrolled in EDM 310. My major is physical education. I am going to be a coach one day. I found your blog very interesting. I was left thinking can you really teach scenarios because scenarios are different. They are no same scenarios. I found it interesting because nothing goes exactly to the script.

    • Hey Isaac, and thanks for reading! Life is all scenarios – it doesn’t go to script. I reckon that if you get practice at responding to scenarios and as a result develop a flexibility in our thinking then it sets you up for the curly ones we get thrown in life. Good luck with your studies!


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