Students Benefit from Physical Education and Activity

October 02, 2020

10.2.20 Fall Session is well underway and our students are learning and growing in leaps and bounds. What’s happening with P.E. (Physical Education) and fitness activities? Lots!

First of all, the playground has been a hive of action, and is newly spruced up. Students love their turns on the playground for the running, sliding, climbing and swinging available out there.

Playground Cleanup & Mulching Party

Another arm or our PE program is our use of Special Olympics Young Athletes program. We use the curriculum throughout the school, which means that there is a well-planned series of physical education activities that teachers can choose to include in their class lesson plans. The curriculum to benefit the children in their room. The activities are in a progressive order of skill development and each classroom has an easy-to-use deck of cards, each card like a recipe card for a particular activity. The materials that we’ve received from this grant/partnership with Special Olympics are absolutely terrific. The program is created especially for kids such as ours, and intended to be used in integrated settings such as ours.

Special Olympics Young Athletes Program at Crossroads!

Finally, our kiddos get out and about. When the weather allows, in addition to the playground, you’ll find our classes out on bikes, walking laps, playing basketball and more. This week we got to catch up with Room 14 as they enjoyed scooters, bikes, cars and a walk around the parking lot.


We are so sad to be missing students right now during this time when we are closed due to precautions around COVID-19. To help, each day we’re updating blog spots and our PARENT RESOURCES page with resources for our families to use at home to help keep skills and routines in practice.

Today, Mrs. Rebecca, Room 5’s Early Childhood Teacher has shared this resource that her students enjoy for inside recess activities.

She writes, “My kids like for “indoor recess” and there is also an app available for tablets and phones.

Thank you, Rebecca, for sharing this with us!

6.24.2020 If you’ve ever been around the school here, you’ve undoubtedly noticed that our students have many opportunities for physical activity throughout their day.

The half hour Physical Education (P.E. aka “gym”) slot that each class has every day is truly critical for health and wellness.

Leading experts in health sciences such as the Mayo Clinic tell us that regular exercise is necessary for healthy living. Some of the benefits of keeping active include controlling weight, improving mood and energy, sleeping better and fighting many illnesses such as heart disease, arthritis, anxiety and depression. Here’s an article about the topic from their website :

Here at Crossroads Center for Children we are firm believers in the benefits and importance of exercise. Physical activity is woven into each and every day for our students. We know that children need time and space to play and move their bodies. They use “gym” time to express energy, something kids tend to have in abundance. They also use this time to interact with other kids in physical ways, in a safe and structured setting.

P.E. class is a time for children to learn new motor skills. As they participate in games and fitness activities, their abilities improve as does their confidence and also the likelihood of sustaining an active lifestyle lifelong. Children learn by watching and modeling their teachers and peers – by actively doing the tasks. Students work on many motor skills in their P.E. classes, for example bouncing, scooting, climbing, racing, skipping, jumping and hula-hooping are physical tasks that kids are practicing here, many for the first time, and many more for the first time with others. Games of soccer and basketball, obstacle courses, duck-duck-goose, and biking are some of the favorites for our students.

Crossroads Center for Children provides a rich and fun learning environment full of appropriate, active and meaningful experiences for our students. Children come from all over the Capital Region and classes start at age 18 months and go to age 12. Preschool aged children with developmental special needs such as Autism learn alongside their general education peers, and both groups benefit from this educational model. Additionally, four school aged classrooms assist this age group of children, preparing them for successful lives.

For students who qualify for Physical Therapy (P.T.), our Physical Therapist, Mr. Joe, helps them work on work on important and challenging motor skills. Throwing, catching, jumping, stairs, walking…. really whatever the child needs to access the school environment are targeted in PT sessions for the children who have that service in their Individualized Education Plan.


In addition to P.E. class and free play times every day, and in addition to P.T. for those who have it, students have additional active movement built into their daily routines. For example, teachers and therapists use strategies during their sessions, lessons and reinforcements to give their students chances to move. Moving through centers, jumping to count numbers, going on a bear hunt, and scavenger hunting through the hallway for letters are some of the creative ways teaching happens at Crossroads. Since the risks to overall health and wellness are great when kids are sedentary, these kinds of movement-motivated activities can only serve to help our kids be happy and healthy.

These are some of the ways Crossroads Center for Children is helping to build health and wellness into our students’ lives, which is a big part of helping them prepare for success in their lives.

Hannaford Helps Reusable Bag ProgramGala Gratitude! Crossroads Gala 2020.