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Review — Fitness 4 Homeschool

June 17th, 2011

Mom, what are we doing for PE today?

Ummm, oh yeah, that.

It’s on the schedule, but sometimes turns into unplanned active time rather than a formal teaching time. We do calisthenics, practice basketball skills, or run around the walking trails at the park by our house. So, while we don’t generally miss PE (it is required), we don’t always have a good plan for it either.

Until now. I got a new follower on Twitter one day and had to check out this Family Time Fitness company. They offer a PE curriculum geared toward homeschoolers. It comes complete with warm ups, cool downs, and fun activities to go in the middle. Each class took us about a half hour to complete, but your family might take slightly longer or shorter than that depending on the age and focus of your kids. It was just right for our school day.

Product: Fitness 4 Homeschool

Details: A complete PE curriculum especially for kids in K-8. This one year program will give you activities for 5 days a week for 52 weeks.

Price: $77 (not much more than you would pay for one child’s PE class for the year at many co-ops!)

What I loved . . .

  • Beyond a PE class. More than just filling a class requirement, this program is about being healthy and active. That’s why it doesn’t fit in a neat 180 day school year. Fitness is for life and this program helps you toward that end.
  • Builds on basics. Arm circles, leg lifts, calf raises. Fitness isn’t really complicated, but coming up with a plan can be time consuming. They have done that for you. Took lots of familiar activities and exercises and added in some fresh ideas to make it sparkle, and packaged it up in an easy to use format for everyone to follow along with. PE planning with this product takes a few seconds of clicking each day rather than a half hour or more to plan the week.
  • Made for in house. While you could definitely enjoy these activities with another family they are designed to be done in house. We have our own little one room school house, but even if you homeschool one child, most of these activities could be done together without a larger group.
  • Video demos. We all hear those instructors saying to make sure you do it the right way so you don’t strain anything. With short and to the point videos that you access online, you can all see what it should look like. The demonstrations have an adult and children performing the various actions.
  • Great for an age mix. We used this with a kindergartener, an 8th grader and a few sprinkled in between. They all were able to participate at their levels and really enjoyed the activities. In watching it I was thinking it was geared a little young for my 8th grader, but he did not complain one bit and especially appreciated that we actually had a more planned PE everyday rather than getting pushed off or made more informal because it was unplanned.
  • Can be reused, or stretched over a couple years. In the summer we tend to be more active, so our formal PE tapers off a bit. If that is the case in your house you could easily stretch this over two years. And, many of the lessons could be repeated without boredom for even longer. You have permanent access to the videos so this is a great one time purchase that can establish your PE plans until high school!
  • Excellent exercise. I love these classes. I work up a light sweat while doing the activities along with my kids.  Again, nothing complicated, but just some simple activities that require me to get up out of the “teacher’s chair” and get moving with them. It is definitely helping me get and stay in shape in this season where homeschooling consumes my days.

Some considerations . . .

  • Do need some room. We run out of room in our school room for these, so it is really better to head outside if the weather is tolerable. Allow yourself plenty of room to swing those arms without smacking file cabinets or children. You can watch the videos inside and then head outside to actually perform them.
  • Might want to supplement with team sports or other group activities. What this program does not do is teach your kids basketball skills or soccer drills. I think this is also an important part of the PE program, so we try to balance our time and make room for team sports here and there throughout the year.  And, they say they have something in the works to do that type of thing at home as well. Definitely keep your eye out for more products from this homeschool friendly company.

We definitely needed this product right here, right now. My PE was getting a bit dull and needed more direction. I was so thankful for the videos and planning that were packed in there to keep all of us moving. I definitely believe that a good PE class helps the rest of the day go  better as well. In our house anyway, they’ve got to move before they sit.

Disclaimer: This product was provided to me free of charge through Family Time Fitness For the purpose of reviewing it. I received no additional compensation and the opinions expressed here come from my personal experiences and sincere thoughts.



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