Category Archives: Connecting Our Learning

Free Courses elsewhere: Sportsmanship and NCAA Eligibility, both from the National Federation

Two online courses on the National Federation of State High School Association’s (NFHS) Learning Center – “Sportsmanship” and “NCAA Eligibility” – have been revised in May 2018. Courses are for high school coaches, school administrators, as well as parents and student-athletes. Both courses are free and available on the Learning Center at www.NFHSLearn.com.

The “Sportsmanship” course, which is intended to provide schools with a more positive game environment, defines sportsmanship, provides examples of good and poor sportsmanship, and discusses the roles of players, coaches, parents, fans and officials in the education-based setting of high school sports.

“Understanding the role that each person plays with regard to sportsmanship is critically important, and the revised course delivers that message in an engaging format,” said Dan Schuster, NFHS director of educational services.

The “NCAA Eligibility” course is designed to educate high school coaches, administrators and parents about the NCAA’s initial-eligibility requirements. The newly revised course provides the latest NCAA initial-eligibility standards and the steps that student-athletes need to complete in order to compete in NCAA Divisions I and II athletic programs.

“It is important that high school coaches and administrators have the latest information on NCAA eligibility standards to share with athletes and their parents,” Schuster said. “Even if coaches and administrators have taken the course in previous years, we would encourage those individuals to take the updated course now available through the NFHS Learning Center.”

After starting with two courses in 2007 through the NFHS Coach Education Program, the NFHS Learning Center now offers 58 online courses – including 25 of which are free – and has expanded its reach to contest officials, students, administrators and leaders in performing arts programs. Since the launch of www.NFHSLearn.com in 2007, the NFHS has delivered more than 6.7 million courses.

Rotary

Landing page for Rotary Club presentation(s)

Mark Rauterkus was an invited speaker to the Kittanning Rotary Club on  February 28, 2018. These resources assist with interactions with members and other Rotary groups in the future.

Handout

Introduction:

Coach Mark Rauterkus joins us from Pittsburgh’s historic South Side. Mark has been a swim coach since 1976 when he started a swim team as a high-school-aged lifeguard.

He has coached nine (9) years at the college level. Mark has worked for more than 52 athletic directors and 34 principals. In his career, more than 10,000 kids have called him “Coach Mark.”

His swimmers have set state records in: Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois and Massachusetts.

Mark’s newest role: executive director of SKWIM USA, a nonprofit to grow the aquatic game of SKWIM.

Mark’s passion as an advocate in the city is expressed at CLOH dot org. Creating Literate Olympians Here.

Resources and Easy Courses:

Feel free to team up with a youngster for meaningful online adventures.

Advance insights with Coach Mark as your guest speaker

I’ll speak about my personal history as a coach in swimming and water polo in the city — and throughout my career. But, it isn’t much about me, however. The focus is on how we can leverage sports, fitness, wellness and efforts in our communities around the realm of playing well with others. Some of the basic understandings of the purpose and meaning of sports need to be put into better focus.

Sports are games of time, space and relationships. That’s from a book I helped publish years ago, Sport, Spirit & Soul.

With a philosophy and a few concept maps, we can make improvements and reform — as many elements in sports are in trouble and messed up.

So, I’ll talk quickly about some problems and how they can be fixed. And, how the wisdom of the group of those in attendance can make an impact with the community, teams, coaches, and participants — as well as with their own families — in terms of sports.

Likewise, I’ll leave with a few challenges and tools for others to do, online, for free, for fun, if interested. Q&A of course.

My message is a help us think again about sports and recreation from school age kids to seniors, spectators to league managers.

Projector if possible but not necessary

I love to present off of my iPad. Photos help to put more sizzle into the story. I have the various types of adapters, VGA, HDMI, and Apple’s Lightening.

Pop Quiz

As a way to be more interactive, especially among friends and with a smaller group, we can share our own remarks and move through the talk, guided by the questions on this quiz. Door prize expected for top answer giver, but I’m biased as to what answers I’m seeking. Most questions have no right or wrong answers, much like life.

pop-quiz-for-Rotary-Club

Replies:

  • Authentic Pittsburgh: steel, incline, 3 rivers, sports, ethnic
  • Favorite sports: soccer, hockey, football
  • Other favorable sports: hockey, football, basketball, soccer, golf, boating
  • Favorite team: Penguins (mid 2000s), Penguins, Steelers
  • Game as youngster: soccer, hockey, basketball, softball

More

Google Applied Skills

Grow with Google, a new initiative to help develop the skills to find jobs and grow business. A new G Suite certification has been launched to validate proficiency with tools like Drive, Gmail, Hangouts Meet, Docs, Sheets and Slides. The Applied Digital Skills curriculum is a great place to start to prepare learners for this exam.

Get started on the courses

 

  • Go to g.co/applieddigitalskills
  • Click “Sign In,” and sign in with their Google account
  • Select “I am a learner”
  • Enter class code 94goes
  • Put on headphones and watch the first video

 

 

Connected Writing Ideas

Students and even coaches are encouraged to write within the Swim & Water Polo program. Open ended questions follow:

How did practice go today?

Was it good? — That’s sorta boring. Why was it decent, or amazing, or not. However today’s practice was for you, try to learn from it. What did you gain? Can you turn a bad practice-frown upside down? Can you capitalize on the momentum of a good workout?

What are some of the things you need to do to guarantee that you’ll have a great practice the next time you are at the pool — or even in the classroom?

What about sleep? Can you put yourself to bed early? Sleep is often the best supplement for your growth and improvement. If you are training hard, you need quality sleep too. Play hard and rest hard.

Do you have a favorite going to bed routine? A favorite pillow? Do you have a favorite blanket? How can you get two extra hours of sleep tonight? With good sleep, you recover more deeply and improve brain functions. You’ll be more focused and attentive in training and boost your immune system.

Talk about water. How about hydration? Can you drink a bunch of water today?

Do not drink the pool water, of course. But, drink from the fountain. Drink at meals. Drink from your own water bottle. Take care of it. Don’t play with it, but treat it as a valued asset to guard and consume. It’s hard to remember to drink an adequate amount of water over the course of the day. Being properly soaked with water, inside and out, makes for a great day.

Performance declines happen when you sweat and body weight drops. Cramps and headaches can be more frequent. And your rate of perceived effort goes up. That means you think your efforts are hard. Don’t make the hard workout feel harder than it has to feel. Hydrate!

Write a goal for your next practice.

Most campers walk into an activity and can only brace themselves for the challenges ahead. You can do more to prepare so you are ready to perform. Don’t just react to everything that comes you way. Be brave getting in. Decide that for yourself. Be attentive to the coaches and instructors and absorb every word they say. Start to listen to them even before they speak. Be ready to catch on what comes next.

Go to practice with a specific goal in mind. The goal doesn’t have to be crazy. Tell yourself to do extra dolphin kicks on push offs the wall. Setting yourself a little goal will give you a sense of ownership and pride in your swimming. Sit down with some paper or onto the web site or tablet and make a training journal note. Write what you are going to accomplish tomorrow.

Tell the world a few things you are grateful for.

As you communicate your ideas about the things in your life you are grateful for, you’ll find that you’re doing one of the best stress-busting techniques ever. Keep perspective. Be grateful.

Writing down a few things you are grateful helps us stay positive.

Pick one piece of self-talk you want to change.

Becoming a mentally tougher is a challenge. Learning how to struggle without quitting. Press on when your heart and chest are telling you to take a break. Use visualization to help remind ourselves what we were saying to ourselves in these battles. What can we do for ourselves to be better for the next competition?

One thing you can do now and write about is to pick a piece of self-talk to use at practice tomorrow.

Controlling your self-talk is one of the biggest steps in developing a tougher, high-performance mindset.

What are some of the things you have said to yourself or others during tough practices in the pool? What negative things went through your mind? Write it out, and do some mental judo to give that negative self-talk a positive tone.

“I’m tired and I don’t feel like I can go faster…”

Vs.

“I’m tired, but so is everyone else. Let’s give the next play an awesome effort and take things from there.”

Write about the future and explain what tomorrow’s great workout can look like.

Visualization and imagination are big concepts that can be used to improve yourself. Just “daydream” about your swimming. Then daydream about tomorrow’s time at the pool. Instead of goofy daydreaming, take control of it.

Spend a few minutes visualizing what you want your stroke to feel like in pool tomorrow. See in your mind’s eye, the top-of-the-water, clean, smooth energy with your arms and legs. Picture your body zooming along the surface.

Go!

Link to input form.

Quiz Pre-flight for SKWIM Level 1 to Level 4

Test your knowledge, and the delivery of these questions and answers concerning aquatic’s safety and surf knowledge by taking these four multiple choice quizzes for a whirl. They are new and may need to be edited. Your suggestions and feedback is desired.

Every question has an opportunity to comment. You do need to register with a username and password. You need to take the tests in order.

Level 1 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:


Level 2 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:


Level 3 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:

Level 4 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:

Recap: Special SKWIM event at the Oliver Bath House and post-game open house was a blast

Our event and visit to the historic, Citiparks’ Oliver Bath House on South Side was a big success.

Citiparks Lifeguards and VIPs from The Pittsburgh Project and Mel from PPS / State Rep Gainey’s office, along with hosts, Coach Mark of Pittsburgh Obama and Kevin, SKWIM’s inventor from Washington.

Extended Game Video

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Opportunities and improvements to Pittsburgh’s scholastic sports amounts to a wicked design challenge.

 

Pittsburgh, a sports town, needs to support its citizens, families and athletes in efficient, economical ways so programs and individuals thrive. Improving the city’s recreational landscape, especially for the often neglected sectors of the city, requires the building of the appropriate  political will in these human endeavors. Furthermore, the building and changes must include a suite of collective beliefs in technical aspects.

All in all, the quagmire becomes a design problem with complicated, multi-dimensional aspects that spans age groups, abilities, interests, facilities, institutions, and budgets.

Pittsburgh’s sports overhaul is a wicked design challenge.

A report on design thinking defines wicked design challenges as a “class of social system problems which are ill-formulated, where the information is confusing, where there are many clients and decision makers with conflicting values, and where the ramifications in the whole system are thoroughly confusing” (Churchman, 1967 , p. 141).

One positive outcome is the building of a collective belief, especially among consequential stakeholders. Municipal government, county services, school districts, coaches, volunteers, college admissions officers, employers, educators, families and learners are needed for engagement and eventual prosperity.

The challenge of building a collective belief is a far more complicated design challenge than making a new slogan with team t-shirts.

The courses, interactions, pathways, playlists and experiences at Play.CLOH.org offer visual designs with digital badges, yet the movement is surprisingly complex. Badge system design demands more effort than a series of web activities and services. As Play.CLOH.org efforts are designed to function across institutional and other types of boundaries, the meta mission with an entire open badge infrastructure makes the complexity of the struggle and its design task exponentially confusing.

OPTIONAL Swim & Water Polo Activities: Downtown Parade

These events are optional and extra and are NOT a part of the normal Pittsburgh Public Schools’ Summer Dreamers events. Families are invited to participate in the following community events on your own. No transportation is provided by PPS. Questions should be sent to Coach Mark Rauterkus, 412-298-3432, (cell) or Mark@Rauterkus.com.

Downtown Parade for Pittsburgh’s Bicentennial down Liberty Avenue, Saturday, July 9, 2016. Arrive after 10 am. Parade begins at 11 am. After the parade, play aquatic games at Northside, Citiparks’ Sue Murray Swim Pool, Cedar Avenue, across from the Giant Eagle / Sunoco gas station.

Tip: Our parade position and meet-up is going to be at Liberty Ave and 11th Street. We will meet behind a school bus that is to be decorated for PPS and the Pittsburgh Promise.

Tip 2: Park your car, if you drive, near CAPA or else on the Northside by the swim pool. then walk to Liberty Avenue and 11th, near the Strip District.

Swim pool
Northside’s Sue Murray Swim Pool has plenty of space for various aquatic games in deep, middle and shallow water.

Swimmers from Summer Dreamers with Athletes United for Clean Air are going to march with Pittsburgh Public Schools and the Pittsburgh Promise to celebrate the city’s history. 

Update: Due to parade protocol, the message for the parade is about Pittsburgh Public Schools and Summer Dreamers — and not about, “Go USA! Go Leah!”

Olympic schedule insights:

Cheer for Leah Smith and Katie Ledecki as they race together in Rio on:

  • Sunday, August 7th – women’s 400m freestyle prelims/final
  • Wednesday, August 10th – women’s 800m freestyle relay prelims/final
  • Thursday, August 11th – women’s 800m freestyle prelims
  • Friday, August 12th – women’s 800m freestyle finals
  • Prelims begin at 10 am EASTERN time while Semis & Finals begin at 7 pm EASTERN.

More Swimming, Water Polo and SKWIM opportunities in Pittsburgh this summer:

  • Tuesdays, 6 to 7:30 pm, Citiparks Ammon Rec Pool, Bedford & Memory Lane, Hill District
  • Wednesdays, 6 to 7:30 pm, Citiparks Ammon Rec Pool, Bedford & Memory Lane, Hill District
  • Thursdays, 6 to 7:30 pm, Citiparks Sue Murray Pool, Cedar Ave. Northside

* Additional events always published at the open google calendar at CLOH.org.

Seeking test content: Got quiz?

We are seeking helpers and partners who have written tests, exams, quizzes and other clever-input, review, guessing-games that are freely able to be shared — especially in the subject area of sports, fitness, health, wellness, active-lifestyle and games. Youth technology and young career content welcomed too.

No promises, but we’d love to host your test or quiz on these pages and then share the process and results with you too.

Call Coach Mark Rauterkus, 412-298-3432.

Email is Mark -at- Bloomfield-Garfield dot org.

Thanks.