Exercise as Punishment?

If you were in a math class and some of the students were not done their homework – as a teacher, how would you respond? 

Each teacher runs their classroom different. Each teacher has a relationship with their students – knows their strengths and understands their weaknesses and needs. Naturally, each teacher would hand the above question differently.

If you walked into a classroom however and saw the students who were not done their work were asked to come to the back of the classroom and complete 100 burpee’s, what would you think about this? I saw this exact situation unfold one day, and it made me not only question the teacher’s actions, but how the students were effected as well.

I think teachers with different education backgrounds would have different reflections and opinions.

I for one, was confused. I did not agree with this approach and I am able to do so. I did not agree that a physical exercise should be used as a form of punishment for not having your homework done. What I also did not like was that these students were falling behind, because while they were doing this exercise, the corrections were being written on the board and they were missing out on this part of the lesson. As well, I don’t feel that exercise should be used as a form of punishment. A burpee is a demanding exercise. It was not demonstrated to them, so the students were not performing the task correctly – students could have been injured. The students did not like this task, they weren’t doing it properly, other students were watching them, and they were tired and caused distraction for the other students.

I recently talked with a professor who teaches physical education courses at a university and the ultimate point we hit on was: What are the students actually learning by doing this exercise?  The students really were not learning from completing this exercise during math class. It may have reset their brain, but they weren’t benefiting physically from this and they were falling behind in the math lesson.

Do you have any thoughts on exercise being used as a punishment?


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