Teacher Tuesday – Ms Catriona Watt
This week we introduce you to Ms Catriona Watt, Head of PE and Sport, who joined us in August and has brought a wealth of talent and fresh ideas to our PE Department.
How many years have you been teaching?
I have been teaching for 14 years.
When did you join KIS?
I joined KIS in August 2017.
What attracted you to KIS?
There were a lot of factors that drew my attention to KIS but a major consideration was the small community nature of the school. I am fortunate to teach across the whole school in PE and I love being able to get to know all the students. Walking across the playground and being able to stop and talk to students of different ages is a great way to build a positive rapport and makes for a far more enjoyable work and teaching experience.
What is your favourite sport to teach and why?
I would struggle to pick just one sport as I am an advocate for all types of physical activity. I really enjoy doing units on ‘Modified Sports’ as students can draw on particular skills and tactical components from a number of different sports, transferring these into a new and unfamiliar context. It’s also a great unit to allow student directed learning, where individuals and groups can create their own games to then teach to the rest of the class.
You recently took a team of U15 students to compete in a sports competition in Phuket, what do you think the students gained from this experience?
I believe that being able to take part in competitions such as the FOBISIA games is an invaluable experience and develops qualities that students can draw on long after they have left school. The personal challenge that each student undertakes to firstly train and prepare for the competitions teaches commitment and dedication to achieving one’s goals. The friendships and common camaraderie that develops during these weeks is another benefit, as are the connections that children are able to make with students from other schools.
What is your favourite PE resource and why?
I would have to say my favourite resource are cones. I am very particular about the set-up of my lessons as I like to colour coordinate everything! Also, when you’re teaching the younger children, the more cones to mark out spaces the better!
How would you describe your teaching style?
I would describe my teaching style as very energetic and encouraging. Being a positive role model for students is very important to me and I always try to model the skills and behaviours that I am trying to develop in my lessons. More than anything else, I believe effort and application are essential in mastering any new skill and students will be more inclined to work hard if they are motivated and feel valued, so I try to maintain a very positive and friendly lesson environment.
Tell us a little known fact about you:
Last summer I completed the Camino de Santiago, Frances walking 1000km across Northern Spain.
If you could meet a Sports hero, who would you meet and why? I would want to meet Cathy Freeman the 400m Olympic champion at the Sydney Olympics. Not only was she a phenomenal athlete who overcame tremendous national pressure to win her event, but she was and continues to be an excellent role model for both female athletes and Indigenous Australians.
KK has many outdoor activities to enjoy, what is at the top of your list?
I have already been lucky enough to enjoy some diving off the islands of Kota Kinabalu and hope to do a lot more around Borneo. I can’t wait to climb the mountain and plan on tackling that in April. A friend has set me the challenge of hiking it wearing the locally made “Kampung Adidas” so we’ll have to see if I can accept that challenge.