- Editor's note: This essay is written by Mill Creek and Fabyan Elementary physical education teacher Rick Belval.
The Mill Creek PTO Committee, "Mill Creek in Motion" and I are teaming up for our first annual after-school "Tchoukball Tournament" this week at .
More than 75 Mill Creek students are competing in a four-day, round robin, non-elimination contest that is scoring or point driven.
Not familiar with Tchoukball? Pronounced "Chuke-ball," this sport was conceived by a Swiss biologist some 40 years ago, though its value is just being realized in the world of physical education.
Most similar to Olympic team handball, the primary objective is one of scoring points by throwing a small ball off a frame rebounder. It is designed to be accessible to anyone who can run, throw and catch, making it a real game-changer and equalizer in 21st century physical education.
It is highly movement-oriented. In a 30-minute class, many of my fourth- and fifth-grade students spend 20 minutes or more in the target heart rate zone (155-200 beats per minute.) Conventional (guarding-style, take-away) defense is strictly prohibited, giving it real appeal to the more non-athletic, passive mover.
It also challenges talented movers by rewarding good hands, eye-hand coordination, quickness, reaction time, strength, anticipation, spatial awareness and teamwork.
Finally, Tchoukball enjoys a certain "spirit of the game" that's absent or lost in many traditional sports and games. The late Dr. Herman Brandt of Geneva (Switzerland) envisioned something which could teach and inspire human movement in harmonious fashion.
You'll find a video clip of my students playing Tchoukball on my program webpage.
The tournament ran from 2:15 to 3:30 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and concludes at the same time Friday in the Mill Creek Elementary School gym.
Mill Creek and Fabyan Elementary physical education teacher
Editor's Note 2: Geneva Patch loves Essays from Educators. If you're a teacher, administrator, staff member or PTO parent and know something cool is going on at your school, send an essay (and photo or photos) to Rick Nagel at firstname.lastname@example.org.