Aleta Margolis believes excellent instruction engages students intellectually, emotionally, and physically. When we shift classroom practices and invite students to move in class, we can create vibrant environments where students are more likely to be engaged, instruction and new ideas are internalized and new skills are built. We tend to see movement in the classroom as a “break”, however, a wealth of learning can emerge from
Here are some examples of how teachers have incorporated movement into learning, as opposed to just as a break from learning:
- Have students measure their pulse and breath rates before and after a set of jumping jacks and have them create graphs to display the results.
- Make an outline of your city using masking tape on the floor of the classroom/gym/playground and map out the city’s geography by walking to and from important sites, as well as their homes, schools, and playgrounds.
- Estimate the perimeter of the playground and then physically measure the distance using their own feet and the standard foot on a ruler.
- Vigorously shaking a container of cream to create butter can teach about the difficult realities of frontier life as well as the science of our own bodies.
- Have students time each other running to learn about basic time measurements and/or time perception – Ask, why
does30 seconds feel so long when you’re out of breath but so short when you’re playing a game or waiting in line?
Remember, careful planning, setting clear expectations, boundaries and learning objectives supports success with any activity. How can you incorporate movement into your learning activities? Share ideas with your colleagues this week.