So you’re gonna start planning your Basketball Unit?
First things first – kick it off by reminding those athletic kids that think they don’t need any practice with fundamentals that even PRO players practice the fundamentals to get better and master their skills.
I always wait to teach my basketball unit until March since there is so much buzz about March Madness, it seems like it’s more culturally relevant. To kick off the unit I always start with watching a cool Globetrotters video and explain to the students how important it is to work on the fundamentals of the game even if you are a pro.
See an example of a ball handling video below, but you can also check out their website – they have a ton of videos.
After going over a few of the management protocols and cues we bring all the students into a circle in the middle of the gym and teach them some fun ball handling drills that will help them improve their basketball skills.
These are great drills that kids can practice at home with any type of ball. See a model example of instruction from my awesome co-teacher Marcus Nellems below teaching Slaps, Taps, Wraps, Flips and Flops.
After teaching the ball handling drills during the first lesson, we begin the following lessons of our unit by doing a quick warmup for about 3-4 minutes of Follow the Leader and ask students to work on keeping their eyes up and trying to copy the ball handling moves that the teacher is doing without looking at the ball.
It’s a quick, fun warm-up and the students enjoy it. You can modify the moves for younger students to make it easier. See an example of me leading a 5th grade class in Follow the Leader below:
We do similar warm-ups during our soccer unit and jump rope unit.
Teach the drills at the beginning and then do a follow the leader style warm-up to kick off the following lessons with the footwork drills we taught to the students during the first week.
Passing and Shooting
Basketball Station Activities
With my K-2nd Graders I also do lots of Station Work so they can build up the fundamental skills needed to play modified games – you can purchase my Station Signs HERE if you’re interested (see a few examples of the signs below)
And last but not least, if you want to see my Basketball Cues Poster (and all my other posters) make sure to check out the PE Poster Tour of all the infographics on my gym walls.