Most students tell us that physical education is a highlight of their day. What child doesn’t love gym class and playing outdoors? 

Physical education improves confidence, wellness, and academic outcomes while developing life skills that shape the whole person. Research has shown that participation in team sports leads to a feeling of belonging and greater satisfaction in school and community. Furthermore, the combination of exercise, social support, and structure is useful in preventing or treating anxiety and/or depression in young people. At MMS, we see physical education as encouraging smart choices and cultivating a healthy lifestyle into adulthood! In other words, it is part of a well-rounded education that focuses on your child’s complete development physically, emotionally, and leads to managing better friendships and a higher emotional intelligence. 

The State of Wisconsin’s physical education requirements are quite vague, making it possible for public schools to get away with only one gym class per week, and some not at all because they sign a waiver in order to be exempt from these standards. The chart below shows how MMS prioritizes Athletics as part of our curriculum.

Comparison Between National Averages and MMS:

Standard/Requirement Wisconsin and National Requirements Milwaukee Montessori School Practice
Amount of time students are active in PE class 35% 99.99%
Minutes of PE required each week 90 130 – 180
Minutes of daily recess required 16-20 30 minutes outdoors
Minutes of Physical Activity required per week

PE Equipment and Facilities

Participation in a school 


Revision of Standards  

No mandate set

No annual 



61% of girls and 

65% of boys in 

8th grade

Last revised in 


230 (not including afterschool sports)

State of the art facility that is 

evaluated regularly for safety

87% of MMS students in grades

4th – 8th

We revise our standards for all programs each year

As you can see, we go above and beyond the requirements of our state, providing 140 to 300 minutes of PE each week depending on grade level, offering 30 minutes of daily outdoor recess (unless it’s bitterly cold), and revising our physical education program regularly.

To ensure that our students are benefitting from this program, we offer new clubs and activities based on their interests – from flag football to modern dance – and evaluate their overall fitness levels twice a year.

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