Category Archives: Physical Education

The Teachers’ December Survival Kit (Redux)

During the last few years, I’ve collected quite a few resources to help teachers “survive” the few weeks before Winter Break.  Rather than recycle them in separate posts this year, I decided to put the links to the posts all in one place.  (The “Telegenic” post shares related videos.)

One activity that has made it into my lesson plans for a few years in a row is, “Outside my Snow Globe.” Another seasonal favorite on this blog is to S.C.A.M.P.E.R. the Holidays.

image from: https://www.flickr.com/photos/aoifecitywomanchile/3229526632
image from: https://www.flickr.com/photos/aoifecitywomanchile/3229526632
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Oh, The Weather Outside is Delightful!

For some of us, that is.  Giant panda, Bao Bao, for example, thoroughly enjoys the weather that, depending on your location, might shut down your entire city.

Most educators aren’t opposed to a snow day every once in awhile. What we dread more are those “Indoor Recess” days that can sometimes last for weeks.

GoNoodle has come to the rescue to help your students work off those wiggles.  They’ve added some “Indoor Recess Mega Mixes” to their ever increasing portfolio of brain breaks.  The next time you are stuck indoors with a 22 students craving some physical activity, you might want to play one of these 11-15 minute collections that include warm-ups, active time, and cool-downs.

Check out the new Mega Mixes from GoNoodle the next time you're stuck inside!
Check out the new Mega Mixes from GoNoodle!

They may not enjoy it quite as much as Bao Bao cavorting in the snow, but you never know!

Physical Ways to Survive the Weeks Before Winter Break

This week I am revisiting some of last year’s posts that have a lot of helpful December links.  This one is about getting everybody moving! Whether it’s between assignments or for indoor recess (those of you who actually have weather that makes that necessary sometimes!), these links are sure to wake everyone up and get out some of those December  wiggles:)

from GoNoodle.com
from GoNoodle.com

One of the things that is really important any time of the year is to get the students up out of their seats.  But it’s particularly vital this time of year.  Attention spans are shorter and less time is spent out of doors in many places.  Here are some ideas for keeping active during the school day:

Want more from this series?  Check out Creative Ways to Survive the Week Before Winter Break , Telegenic Ways to Survive the Week Before Winter Break, and Logical Ways to Survive the Week Before Winter Break!

Let’s Move It, Move It!

It may seem a bit paradoxical to be staring at a screen while you are trying to get fit, but there are more and more tools available out there to allow you to do just that.  As you begin planning for the new school year, you might want to check out some of these tech resources for encouraging kids (and adults) to take brain breaks.  Multiple studies have shown that these are valuable for both the mind and body.

  • I’ve mentioned GoNoodle on this blog before.  I highly recommend this free online tool for an awesome way to motivate your students as well as track how many minutes they are spending on “moving it.” Erin Klein just did a great post on GoNoodle on her blog, and is offering a t-shirt giveaway, so head on over there if you want more details!
  • This summer, I found out about an extension for the Chrome browser called, appropriately, “Move-It.”  You can set it to remind you at certain intervals to take a little exercise break.  To use the extension, you need to be in the Chrome browser.  Click on this link, the “free” button, and “add.”  A small icon will appear in the top right of your browser.  You can click on that icon to set the time periods for intervals.  At the set time, your browser will open a new tab, and give you instructions for a short exercise.  It’s a nice little reminder – though some teachers may find it annoying to have the pop-ups. (You can easily disable it by getting rid of the checkmark in the window or right-clicking on the icon to manage your extensions.)  I did notice a couple of grammar errors in the pop-ups that might make for a fun editing lesson while you are “moving it.”

Move It

  • Finally, Collin Brooks has come up with a fun way for students to get moving at home by creating augmented reality fitness task cards using the free Daqri app.  I love this idea, and hope you will take a look at the short video on this post where he explains how it works.

Physical Ways to Survive the Week Before Winter Break

from GoNoodle.com
from GoNoodle.com

Welcome to the “Survive the Week Before Winter Break” series!  So far, we have “Logical Ways to Survive the Week Before Winter Break” and “Creative Ways to Survive the Week Before Winter Break.”  I hope you’ve found some helpful links on those posts!

One of the things that is really important any time of the year is to get the students up out of their seats.  But it’s particularly vital this time of year.  Attention spans are shorter and less time is spent out of doors in many places.  Here are some ideas for keeping active during the school day:

Tomorrow, the series continues.  However, I’m still thinking of a title.  I think I need to take a bit of a Brain Break, myself…

Brain Breaks and Deskercises

image from: http://www.emc.cmich.edu/brainbreaks/default.htm

More and more research seems to be showing that performance in school can be enhanced by physical activity.  These two sites, Brain Breaks and Deskercises, will give you some great resources for short exercises that can easily be done during the school day.  Some of these are purely physical, and some require some mental exertions.  The key is to give your students an alternative to spending hours in their seats receiving information.  For more information on the benefits of adding more movement to our students’ school day, you can also check out this 2009 story from NPR.

Thanks to my colleague, P.E. Coach Jason Sellers, for bringing these to my attention!

Exercise and Learning

My colleague, P.E. coach Sean Stepan, brought this to my attention the other day.  Coincidentally, this has been on my mind lately – particularly as I am currently in the middle of testing very squirmy Kindergarten students for Gifted and Talented.  I had been talking to several people lately about the need to rethink the design of the classroom, and this ABC News report fits in nicely with that idea.

If the embedded video does not work, here is the YouTube link:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFmq8pNXx9s&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL