Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit



Unit rationale, description and aim

To effectively teach Health and Physical Education, pre-service teachers must have an understanding of development and movement, as well as knowledge of factors that influence health, safety, wellbeing and participation in physical activity.

This unit provides opportunities for pre-service teachers to explore contemporary issues which support early childhood and primary aged students from diverse backgrounds to adopt lifelong healthy and active living, and which relate to enhanced engagement, inclusion, wellbeing and safety of all children. It encourages pre-service teachers to explore quality and effective teaching and learning practices of Health and Physical Education which investigates the knowledge, understanding and skills being taught in a primary school and early childhood contexts, aligned with the Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education, the Early Years Learning Framework and other relevant national and state curriculum, legislation and policy documents. Consideration will be given to differentiated teaching practices designed to support specific learning needs of children from diverse linguistic, cultural (with particular focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders), religious and socio-economic backgrounds, and to facilitate inclusive engagement for all learners. Pre-service teachers will engage with and develop their understanding of a range of appropriate assessment, documentation and reporting processes which will support children's learning and development in this curriculum area.

The aim of this unit is to assist pre-service teachers to develop understanding of quality and effective teaching and learning practices in Health and Physical Education in early childhood and primary settings

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the development and characteristics of children and their impact on learning, aligned with the content of current curriculum, guidelines and policies relevant to Physical and Health Education in primary school and early childhood settings, including issues of health and hygiene, children’s wellbeing, child protection and mandatory reporting (GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5; APST 1.1, 2.1, 2.5, 4.4; ACECQA A1, A4, B1, B2, B8)

LO2 - Identify and demonstrate knowledge and understanding of strategies for differentiating teaching in Physical Education and Health to meet the specific learning needs of children from diverse linguistic, cultural (explicitly including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander), religious and socio-economic backgrounds (GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5; APST 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 2.4, 2.5, 3.2, 4.1, 4.4; ACECQA A6, B1, B2, C5, D5) 

LO3 - Identify approaches to managing behaviour and supporting engagement and social competence in indoor and outdoor activities including a range of verbal and non-verbal communication strategies to support children’s inclusive participation and engagement, including knowledge and understanding of the administrative principles and safety procedures relevant to early childhood and primary contexts (GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5; APST 3.5, 4.1, 4.2, 4.4; ACECQA B1,B2)

LO4 - Plan Physical and Health Education content into effective learning sequences, lesson plans and programs, which set challenging and realistic learning goals, and integrate a range of teaching strategies, and effective assessment and reporting procedures as appropriate across the age range birth to 12 years (GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5; APST 1.5, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 4.1, 5.1; ACECQA B1, B2, B8, B9).

Graduate attributes

GA1 - demonstrate respect for the dignity of each individual and for human diversity

GA2 - recognise their responsibility to the common good, the environment and society 

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 


On successful completion of this unit, pre-service teachers should be able to:

1.1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of physical, social and intellectual development and characteristics of students and how these may affect learning.

1.3 Demonstrate knowledge of teaching strategies that are responsive to the learning strengths and needs of students from diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds.

1.4 Demonstrate broad knowledge and understanding of the impact of culture, cultural identity and linguistic background on the education of students from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds.

1.5 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of strategies for differentiating teaching to meet the specific learning needs of students across the full range of abilities. 

2.1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concepts, substance and structure of the content and teaching strategies of the teaching area.

2.2 Organise content into an effective learning and teaching sequence.

2.3 Use curriculum, assessment and reporting knowledge to design learning sequences and lesson plans.

2.4 Demonstrate broad knowledge of, understanding of, and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and languages.

2.5 Know and understand literacy and numeracy teaching strategies and their application in teaching areas.

2.6 Implement teaching strategies for using ICT to expand curriculum learning opportunities for students.

3.1 Set learning goals that provide achievable challenges for students of varying abilities and characteristics.

3.2 Plan lesson sequences using knowledge of student learning, content and effective teaching strategies.

3.3 Include a range of teaching strategies.

3.5 Demonstrate a range of verbal and non-verbal communication strategies to support student engagement.

4.1 Identify strategies to support inclusive student participation and engagement in classroom activities.

4.2 Demonstrate the capacity to organise classroom activities and provide clear directions.

4.4 Describe strategies that support students’ well-being and safety working within school and/or system, curriculum and legislative requirements.

5.1 Demonstrate understanding of assessment strategies, including informal and formal, diagnostic, formative and summative approaches to assess student learning.

ACECQA Curriculum Specifications

On successful completion of this unit, pre-service teachers should have developed the following specific knowledge:

A Child Development and Care

A1 Learning, development and care

A4 Child health, wellbeing and safety

A6 Diversity, difference and inclusivity

B Education and Curriculum Studies

B1 Early Years Learning Framework

B2 The Australian Curriculum

B8 Physical and health education

B9 Curriculum planning, programming and evaluation

C Teaching pedagogies

C5 Catering to children with diverse needs and backgrounds

D Family and community contexts

D5 Culture, diversity and inclusion


Topics should include:

  • Mental Health for children; including community based resources such as Response Ability and Mind Matters
  • Growth and development for learning in HPE; covering birth to 12 years
  • Interpersonal relationships and communication, social competence and bullying
  • Personal health choices and decision making for diverse learner backgrounds and needs; including healthy food choices, exercise and physical play
  • Curriculum and programming approaches in HPE; including Early Years Learning Framework, Australian Curriculum, and state-based documentation for lesson planning, sequencing of activities, units of work, assessment and evaluation, integration of cross curriculum perspectives
  • Australian Indigenous issues, perspectives and ways of knowing in HPE
  • Fundamental movement skills and effective teaching strategies for indoor and outdoor activities; including a range of non-verbal and verbal communication strategies to manage student learning e.g. gaining attention, hand signals for outdoor communication, use of whistles and other ways to gain attention or indicate transitions, perimeters for safety
  • Student wellbeing, safety and physical activity; the legal context and teaching strategies for inclusion and engagement of all learners in HPE
  • Child protection issues including mandatory reporting responsibilities
  • Integrated approaches to supporting the physical, social and emotional health and wellbeing of young children in prior-to-school and school settings, including a play-based approach to curriculum and safe and supportive environments, the influence of prior-to-school/school, home and community characteristics, and the importance of relationships in supporting the physical, social and emotional health and wellbeing of young children.
  • A health model of wellness and wellbeing as a framework for exploring the social, cognitive, physical, environmental, emotional and spiritual aspects that support a healthy start to life
  • Knowledge of learning and development in Health and Physical Education for setting learning goals that provide achievable challenges for students of varying abilities and characteristics
  • The use and importance of teaching strategies in direct instruction, explicit demonstration and teaching of content, clear directions, systematic and timely feedback for improved learning
  • Teaching and assessment strategies for individual and group differentiation in HPE; including learners with diverse strengths and needs, and from diverse backgrounds, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
  • HPE classroom management and teaching strategies in a variety of contexts and for a diversity of learner needs and backgrounds; including school camps, sport carnivals, classrooms/halls/outdoors 

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

Engagement for learning is the key driver in the delivery of this curriculum which is offered in online mode. A range of teaching and learning strategies are employed to reflect technology-enhanced learning in developing pre-service teachers’ knowledge and understanding of contemporary Health and Physical Education learning pedagogies as can be applied in early childhood and primary contexts. These include synchronous and/or asynchronous digital engagement in interactive learning activities and experiences; student-led discussion forums and group work; directed reading activities; and ICT as a pedagogical tool for mediating learning and assessment in health and physical education disciplines.

Pre-service teachers will follow guidelines to identify and engage in experiences that facilitate their understanding and engagement with content and activities for exploring health, wellbeing and physical activity with children aged birth to 12 years. This will include the interrogation of pedagogies and strategies for the inclusive engagement of learners from diverse backgrounds and across the range of learning strengths and needs. Online learning activities and resources will facilitate pre-service teachers’ critical analysis and reflection of these experiences for the purpose of developing pedagogies and practices for developing inclusive environments and learning experiences in HPE for all learners in early learning and primary contexts. There will be an opportunity for the content to be applied in Professional Experience Studies where pre-service educators will draw on the legal, theoretical, practical and safety considerations from this unit for planning and implementing learning activities in HPE during professional practice placement.

Technology Enhanced Learning

The online teaching and learning in this unit will be offered via a LEO unit site. Lectures, lecture summaries and/or tutorial activities may be recorded to support student learning. Pre-service teachers will be notified when an activity is being recorded prior to the commencement of the activity.

Assessment strategy and rationale

The assessment tasks and their weightings allow pre-service teachers to progressively demonstrate achievement against the course learning outcomes by demonstrating academic and professional standards through achievement against the unit learning outcomes. The Curriculum Studies units in this course focus on developing understanding of and skills in curriculum, pedagogy and assessment for a selected discipline with reference to the Early Years Learning Framework and the primary learning areas of the Australian Curriculum. Emphasis is given to demonstrating professional knowledge of the content and how to teach it (APST 2), and professional practice in planning and implementing learning (APST 3) and assessing learning (APST 5) in the selected area. In EDPH697 the assessment focuses on applying pedagogical content knowledge of inclusive learning opportunities in HPE to engaging learners with diverse backgrounds and needs from birth to 12 years. The two assessment tasks are sequenced to allow feedback and progressive development in demonstrating pedagogical practice in: demonstrating broad knowledge and understanding of issues and strategies in HPE for inclusive engagement of children from birth to 12 years (Task 1); and applying knowledge of curriculum, pedagogy and assessment to the development of teaching, learning and assessment sequences covering health and physical education for children from birth to 12 years (Task 2). The weighting of the tasks reflects the advanced application of knowledge and skills through pedagogical content knowledge in the learning sequences (Task 2).

A range of assessment procedures are used to meet the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes and professional standards and criteria consistent with University assessment requirements. ( ). 

Minimum Achievement Standards

The assessment tasks for this unit are designed for pre-service teachers to demonstrate achievement of each learning outcome. In order to pass this unit, students are required to successfully complete all assessment tasks. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1

Unit Test

Extended response and short answer questions to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of HPE teaching strategies and curriculum implementation in early childhood and primary contexts.


LO1, LO2, LO3

GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5

Assessment Task 2

Learning Sequences

Develop two learning sequences for Health (physical health or social-emotional health and wellbeing) and Physical Education and for early childhood and primary contexts; exemplifying strategies for inclusion and participation of learners with diverse needs and backgrounds.


LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4

GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5

Representative texts and references

Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA) (2011). Guide to the National Quality Standard. Sydney: ACECQA.

Australian Council of Health, Physical Education and Recreation. (2010). Professional standards for graduating teachers, primary generalist P-6 [Brochure]. Melbourne: ACHPER.

Commonwealth of Australia. (2009). Independent sport panel: Crawford report. Canberra, ACT: Government printers.

Darst, P.W., Pangrazi R.P., Brusseau, T.A.,Jr., & Erwin, H. (2015). Dynamic physical education for secondary school students (8th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.

Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. (2009). Improving school sport and physical education in your school. Sydney: Department of Education and Training, NSW.

Meldrum, K., & Peters, J. (2012). Learning to teach health and physical education: The student, the teacher and the curriculum. Frenchs Forest, NSW: Pearson Australia.

Pangrazi, R., & Beighle, A. (2016). Dynamic physical education for the elementary school (18th ed.). San Francisco, CA: Pearson Education Limited.

Tinning, R., M. (2001). Becoming a physical education teacher. Frenchs Forest, NSW: Pearson Education Australia.

Tinning, R., McCuaig, L., & Hunter, L. (2006). Teaching health and physical education in Australian schools. Frenchs Forest, NSW: Prentice Hall.

Underdown, A. (2007). Health and wellbeing in early childhood. Berkshire, England: Open University Press.

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