Using Laptop Wraps in PDHPE

TaLe has created an excellent resource called Laptop Wraps. Basically they are self-contained interactive lessons, which I think are perfectly suited to PDHPE theory lessons and  the vehicle that is the DER laptops our kids now have.

Last week I tied to run a lesson from our Moodle site. The kids had to use some separate resources to create something new. It was probably a reflection of my primitive Moodle awareness, but the kids had trouble bring all the resources together for the job. The beauty of the Laptop Wrap is that the kids can download the zipped file to their laptop, open it and away they go. Internet access is required for links, but all other resources are on the “C” drive, ready to use.

(As an aside, I can see the Wrap becoming a tool that students can create resources with – they won’t just be the target of the resource, but partners in its use – exciting times. Students become teachers – who would have thought it?)

To start, you need the Adobe suite of software to edit and modify the blank template, in particular Dreamweaver and to a lesser degree Fireworks. I have them on my DER laptop, but I’m having issues with the screen and keyboard (they are too bloody small!), so I work on my desktop at home with the Adobe Master Collection I bought through the DET. (A KVM switch will take care of the small screen issue soon)

You can download a template from here. I won’t bore you with a step by step on how to build one. There’s plenty of tutorial information in the template itself, along with support on the TaLe site itself. Take the time to walk through the “How To’s”. There are some useful PDFs in there as well that make great training manuals.

Instead I’m sharing an example that my faculty will use with this years Year 10. Get it from here

I started off thinking that entire units could be handled by the Wraps, which is likely but probably a giant step too far at the moment. I went for the “small chunks” approach, and we will create “topic Wraps”, with smaller amounts of content. Too much information too soon seems likely to run the risk of burning the kids out before they get the hang of it and appreciate the potential of the Wraps.

Feel free to download the file open it up and have a play (probably only of interest to PDHPE teachers).It is my first real crack at putting one together, so Quality Teaching may not be at dizzying heights just yet, but continual improvement is our goal.

Post Script – sharing this Wrap created quite a bit of discussion regarding copyright, and who actually owns the product. Debate raged as to whether it was a DET/Federal Govt/ personal ownership issue. I’ve slapped a Creative Commons note on my blog and on the Copyright notice in the Wrap itself as a way to manage this gray area.

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9 thoughts on “Using Laptop Wraps in PDHPE”

  1. Brilliant- love the creative commons link. Laptop warps look an ideal way for students and teachers to interact in a fun and exciting way.. Make me wish just a teeeny tiny bit I was a HS teacher 🙂

  2. Excellent, just excellent

    Not sure what is more exciting another teacher using creative commons on their resources or a another PDHPE teacher talking about students as creators of content but also students as peer teachers.

    Ben 🙂

  3. I am just wondering…..does anyone else find it worrying that PDHPE teachers are now heavily involved in technology ?

    I mean, traditionally our task was to develop fundamental movement skills, develop strength etc.

    Now our role has changed. We have the students sitting (in a kyphotic posture) during our “health” lessons.

    The pendulum, in my view, has swung too far. The syllabus writers have added and added to our course, but at the same time, taken nothing away…..

    Basic movement has suffered. Students have poorer posture than ever before. And what do PDHPE teachers do to recitify this….???

    Embrace technology….

    Guys it doesnt make sense. Kids need movement. Adults need movement. People need movement.

    PDHPE would be better served by going back to a syllabus heavily dominated by practical lessons.

    I would love to hear your thoughts.

    This link may help you to understand where I am coming from.


    • Andrew
      Yes this is a common misconception technology=no movement. Can I ask if you have played Dance Central on XBox Kinect recently? Or maybe you could look at my Connect profile I move with technology all the time: is this less movement because I have a GPS & HRM strapped to my wrist?

      What Physical Educators like myself & Jonesy do is battle these misconceptions because in my experience technology enables movement and social media improves mental health that we now is connected to holistic health.

      Maybe once you have done a few rounds of Dance Central maybe you could come back here and let us know how related technology is to physical activity.

      Ben 🙂

      Ben 🙂

    • Hi Andrew,
      Thanks for your interest in my blog and for your considered thoughts.
      I’m guessing your a PDHPE teacher in NSW? I took a stab, because not many physical educators call our KLA PDHPE outside of NSW! 🙂
      I agree with what you say about the need for movement. I find that motivation and engagement with our KLA can be difficult for some kids. I also know that quite often what is done in Personal Development & Health classes can destroy or reinforce and magnify the importance of what we do in practical lessons.
      If students are engaged and find the theory work meaningful and relevant, then we have a much better chance at changing attitudes, and hence behaviour.
      The purpose of many posts on this blog is to make PDHPE more relevant for the 21st Century student. The conditions under which they learn, connect and make sense of the world has changed a lot since we went to school (I’m assuming you’re not 1st year out). I’m not for one minute suggesting that technology will replace what PE teachers do – that is instilling the notion that lifelong physical activity is essential as part of the balanced self.
      But I am a pragmatist and I know (KNOW) that the DER laptops (in NSW government schools) present an awesome opportunity to make learning about PDHPE a modern and engaging venture.
      Too much of something can be bad for you. Just like any PE teacher knows. I also know that photocopied paper worksheets have very little chance of working in an engaging way. Technology in class lets kids touch the world outside the walls of the classroom. It can help them understand what good movement looks like – something that hasn’t really been effectively done for the individual student up to know. And I’m confident, used wisely in conjunction with thoughtful learning programs, that it will lead the kids to a better understanding of what leads them to be healthy person.
      Feel free to drop me a line at if you want to chat some more.

      • I would have a disagree. I see the DER laptops as detrimental to our subject area.

        Yes, I am in NSW. I have been teaching since 1996.

        It is beyond me why we would educate kids to “sit more” moving into the 21st century.

        Obesity, back pain, self esteem issues all on the rise and our remedy. Plug yourself in and become engaged.

        You cannot use a computer to see what good movement looks like and learn from it…..

        Explain to me how to ride a bike……

        You can’t. Do you know why ? Movement has to be felt, it has to be explored and it has to be coached with subtle cues. It MUST be hands on.

        Our kids today have no body awareness. Tomorrow ask a prac class to hold the top of pushup position.

        You will see an inability to maintain a neutral lumbar spine, excessive cervical flexion or extension and a hips that are unable to maintain stability.

        All in all, a train wreck. And that’s before they even do a single pushup.

        To make matters worse, the prac teachers that come to me still think that sit-ups and leg raises are effective core exercises. When I show them the research that shows how dangerous they are, due to repetitive lumbar flexion, they are shocked.

        What is sitting in a chair ?

        Lumbar flexion. Can anyone say – Bad back, Locked thorasic spine ?

        The people who will do the best from the DER laptops will be the physios in 5-10 years time.

        I am afraid that all we are doing is contributing to the sedentary society, making it acceptable -” hey because they are engaged and learning”

        We are creating a generation of injury riddled, posture problem – lazy people.

        All is not lost. I have been able to engage students this year. I have had success of late introducing my students to The Prowler and the Turkish Get-up.

        The Prowler

        The Get-up

        Seriously, our PDHPE need to be inserviced on movement. Not on moodle, one-note, blogs etc

        The syllabus needs a dramatic overall – anyone know how I can get on the writing team ?

  4. Hi Andrew,
    I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree on the use of laptops in PDHPE.
    As far as changing the syllabus, I’m sure the PDHPE Curriculum officers / writing team would appreciate your thoughts. I don’t think there will be a re write in NSW any time soon with the National Curriculum on the agenda.
    Your national professional organisation ACHPER has been involved in this process, and I’m sure ACARA will call for submissions. Check out the links below for more information

    Cheers, Jonesy


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