PE (physical education)

Curriculum Intent

At Holmfirth High School, we recognise the importance of PE and the role it must play in promoting long term, healthy lifestyles and making a positive impact on physical, mental and social health. The intent of our PE curriculum is to provide all students with high quality PE and sport provision, not only as a participant but in leadership roles such as a coach, official or choreographer. It is our vision for every child to succeed and achieve their potential as well as to lead physically active lifestyles beyond their years at secondary school. We strive to inspire our students through fun and engaging PE lessons that are enjoyable, challenging, and accessible to all. We want our young people of Holmfirth High School to appreciate the benefits of a healthy and active lifestyle. Through our teaching of PE, we will instil our core values and transferable life skills such as resilience and mutual respect as well as providing them with opportunities to take part in competitive sport through our extensive extra-curricular programme. Our extra-curricular programme is open to all our students to attend on a competitive and social basis, which is run throughout the academic year and for those wishing to play competitively have further opportunities to represent the school locally, regionally, and nationally in various sporting activities. Pupils in Year 9 can enhance their leadership further by gaining a Level 2 Leadership award. This award is open to all pupils and is free.

Key Stage 3

At key stage 3 pupils study a broad and balanced PE curriculum. They have the opportunity to try out new activities as well as take part in those sports where they may have already gained some accurate techniques and knowledge. In Year 7 is about trying out lots of different activities and getting involved in physical activity. As students move through Years 8 and 9, we try to cater for their emerging likes and dislikes with regard to the physical activities they complete. At the start of Year 9 students can opt to start their leadership journey, by taking a sport leader course. This is taught as an extra-curricular activity, after school, with an expected 10 hours of voluntary work in the community.

Key Stage 4

During Key Stage 4 the focus is an enjoyment of physical activity. All students are encouraged to take more responsibility for their own learning and choose an activity pathway, where they continue to build on skills and knowledge and also have the opportunity to take on roles such as official or organiser. All activities take place on the school site which is well resourced for PE.

GCSE Physical Education is also offered and students follow the Edexcel syllabus. Students are assessed in three different sports and these marks will count towards their final exam which will take the form of two written papers. These are sat in the summer of Year 11. The theoretical  component of the course covers a variety of topics including training principles, anatomy and physiology and sports psychology. Exam weighting is 40% for the practical aspects and 60% for the two written exams combined.

Pupils can also study Dance at GCSE. The new specification for GCSE Dance requires that 60% of the marks come from practical units and 40% from the theory unit. There are three practical units, all of which will be assessed in a live practical exam and marks will be moderated by the exam board through video evidence. For this exam, students will be required to perform in a duet or trio performance, perform two motifs set by the exam board and choreograph a solo or group piece in response to set questions.

The theory element of the course requires students to learn about health and safety, nutrition and skills in relation to Dance. However, the main proportion of the theory course focuses on six professional works; pupils learn about the lighting, set design, costume design, accompaniment and movement material used in each piece and must be able to explain how each component relates to the choreographic idea.

They also have to learn about the choreographers of each piece and be able to explain their choreographic approaches. This is all assessed in a 1 ½ hour written exam that includes both short answer and essay style questions.

Key Stage 4 Revision Video

Mr J Battye

Curriculum Leader

Mrs V Wormald

Exam specifications

What Career?


Sports Coach


PE Teacher


Fitness Instructor




Sports Psychologist


Sports nutrition adviser


Professional Athlete


Public services - Police and Fire Brigade

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