Health, Physical Education, Dance » Health, Physical Education, Dance

Health, Physical Education, Dance

Ms. Natalie DeSanctis, Assistant Principal
(718)258-9283 ext 1920
In order to obtain a New York City High School Diploma, a student must pass 7 semesters of Physical Education and 1 semester of Health Education.
The Health and Physical Education Department offers a wide variety of required, and elective courses. These courses, many of which are offered on several ability levels, are geared toward providing each student with an opportunity to satisfy their individual interests and needs.

Course Offerings - Physical Education
Required Courses
INTRODUCTION TO PHYSICAL EDUCATION       (2 semesters is required for ALL incoming students)
This course is designed to introduce entering students to a wide variety of courses and activities offered in physical education.

Students will learn about Contemporary Health Issues and Human Sexuality during this required semester long course during their sophomore year. The Contemporary Issues section of the course will give students the chance to discuss and evaluate their own behaviors (Mental Health, Drugs, Nutrition and Diseases) in order to improve well-being and quality of life. The Human Sexuality section of this course is designed to help students understand themselves as a sexual being and use this awareness to make responsible decisions and live a healthful lifestyle.
Elective Courses

America’s premier playground sport. Basketball skills and strategies will be taught along with team and tournament play.
Modified, touch and/or flag football provides an activity where everyone can improve their skills in throwing, catching, running, positioning and game strategies.
Students will learn the basic skills and team play of the world’s most popular sport.
Students will learn basic skills as well as game rules, history and strategy
Students will learn history, rules, team strategy, basic skills and cooperation through team play. Tournament play is a culminating activity.
Tennis is a life-time activity that is played in singles and doubles. You will learn basic skills, rules, history, and singles & doubles play. Tournament play is a culminating activity.
Students will learn handball and paddleball skills, history and strategy, culminating in both singles and doubles tournaments.
This is an indoor class incorporating group games and activities such as whiffle ball, cage ball, parachute activities as well as games from long ago played in the street. Skills, history, and strategies will be taught for all games.
Physical Fitness
Students will learn proper lifting techniques for free weights as well as machines. Various theories and terminology related to weight training will be discussed.
Students will discover the lifelong benefits of cardiovascular fitness, muscle toning, improving stamina and burning calories.
Method of body conditioning that stretches, strengthens and tones muscles, improves posture, provides flexibility and balance. Unites mind and body, and creates a more streamlined shape.
A group fitness and conditioning class that promotes a lifestyle of physical activity and healthy living. Activities include strength training, cardiovascular training, step, power yoga, plyometrics, circuit training, and boot camp.  Body measurements are recorded and tracked.
Students audition for this class sometime in December.  Students explore diverse genres of dance, such as Folk Dance, Irish Dance, Ballet Workout, Jazz, and Modern.  It is a sampling of dance styles and the class culminates in performance in Murrow's annual concert.  Students who demonstrate proficiency in this class are invited to proceed to Theatre Movement, Jazz Dance, Modern Dance, or Latin, and to be a participant in the professional-track program.
Students will explore the styles and techniques of various modern dance choreographers, (Graham, Humphrey, Horton, Ailey, Cunningham, Dunham) through warm up and combinations. They will be able to recognize the differences in styles and methods of past modern choreographers.  Students will also experiment with improvisational, movement exploration, dance making and performance skills.
Learn the most popular social dances in New York City. Dance your way to the next party with Salsa, Tango, Merengue and Bachata.
This class is designed for Screened Theater Juniors and is an introduction to Physical Theater.  Students explore ideas of Meyerhold, Michael Chekhov, Jacques le Coq, Growtowski, and Anne Bogart through practical applications.  Students also experience various styles of theater, including melodrama, tragedy, comedy and Commedia dell'Arte. The study of classic and modern texts, using the body as a space of ‘knowing,’ are covered as well.

This introductory course focuses upon the body as the source of creativity. This course explores various exercises and methodologies for encouraging appropriate alignment and execution of basic dance steps within a performance context.
THEATRE MOVEMENT II                                 (Prerequisite PDTM1)
This class follows Theatre Movement I. It provides ways to explore active imagination through physical action. Students develop and create characters through movement and gesture.  This class combines physical theatre techniques with theater dance.
Advanced Dance Class is offered during 0 Band.  This is a one-year seminar class that focuses on Classical Dance and Modern Dance (Horton technique).  This course is only for dancers with serious, previous training (either in or outside of Murrow).  It is ideal for the dancer who is interested in a progressive training program in dance, has aspirations of studying Dance in college, has already satisfactorily completed all previous skill levels, or meets the prerequisite standard as determined by the instructor. 
This level is this department’s highest skill level for dance.  While your technical skill is good and your aesthetic is informed, you are also now at a place from which you can re-examine your current understanding and deepen the meaning of technique, skill, performance, and expression that distinguish the artist from the technician.  In this course, each student submits proposals and creates choreography that is performed in an annual dance concert.
(Regents Track)
YEAR I:  This is a lecture course in dance history. The first semester will cover the history of ballet and modern dance, while the second semester focuses upon Latin Dance and the influence of African and Afro-Cuban dance forms on Contemporary American Dance.  Reading and analysis of videos and photographs will be assigned throughout the semester. In-studio projects will guide our discussion about form, content and critical analysis.
YEAR II: This lecture course explores Labanotation, dance criticism, and dance physiology.  This course is designed upon Brenda Pugh McCutchen’s ideas in Teaching Dance as Art in Education (2006). She identifies four fundamental cornerstones for learning in dance: Cornerstone 1 - Dancing and performing; Cornerstone 2 - Creating and composing; Cornerstone 3 - Knowing history; culture and context; and Cornerstone 4 - Analyzing and critiquing. Building from this structure, McCutchen defines dance literacy as, “the ability to function in each dance cornerstone as dancer, critic, historian-anthropologist and choreographer.” Students embark upon their own research and create a thoughtful exit project.
This course is designed for the physically challenged student to learn the fundamentals of games, sports and exercises. Students will improve their motor skills, coordination and fitness.