Tag Archives: GoNoodle

GoNoodle Plus

I usually post about free resources, but I thought I would make an exception today.  The GoNoodle basic account is free, but all of the schools in our county just received access to the Plus version due to a generous grant.  To be honest, I had never even looked at the Plus version before now.

For those of you who haven’t tried GoNoodle, it’s a great site for promoting movement (also known as brain breaks) during the school day.  A free membership allows you to create classes and gives you access to a huge supply of videos that range from silly to exhausting.  It’s been a popular activity for the last few years in my Kinder, 1st, and 2nd GT classes.

The Plus version of GoNoodle cost $99 per year.  I was perfectly happy with the free version, but I am definitely enjoying the added features in Plus.  The biggest benefit is the option to customize several of the videos to fit your curriculum.

For example, the Mega Math Marathon will help your students practice grade level math fluency as they run in place.  Bodyspell allows you to create customized word lists for the students to spell out with their bodies.  When my 1st graders were learning about the continents on Monday, I was able to create customized multiple choice questions for them to answer while they experienced the Montana James adventure.

With GoNoodle Plus, I think the site will appeal to my older students (3rd, 4th, and 5th) as well.  Getting the opportunity to move around while still learning will be a welcome option for many of them.

Here is more information on GoNoodle Plus in case you are interested.  Also, this is the direct link to the GoNoodle Plus Integration Guide.  GoNoodle offers a 15-day trial if you aren’t sure you have the funds to commit for a year-long subscription.

GoNoodle Plus

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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!

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.

Alternatives to Showing the Movie Frozen for the Next 14 Days

You know how it goes.  Grades are turned in.  Textbooks have been collected.  The computer lab is shut down.  But the activity level of our students has gone up.  What’s a teacher supposed to do?

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I’ve been trying to get my students to reflect on the year.  Using our class blog as a reference has helped tremendously.

Yesterday, with my GT 1st graders, I also asked them to look through the blog posts for their grade level.  They used a simple printable I found from Laura Candler to write their favorite moments of the year.  Here are some examples:

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Using divergent thinking for activities like the Squiggle Challenge and S.C.A.M.P.E.R. were very popular with this class.  Speaking of S.C.A.M.P.E.R., here is what some of them did with a page from my Summer Pool Party S.C.A.M.P.E.R. packet – Put an inflatable pool cushion to another use. (By the way, all of my grade levels, K-5, love doing S.C.A.M.P.E.R. drawings!)

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One of the blog posts the first graders “re-discovered” as they reflected was this one.  Try showing the Kid President video at the bottom of that post, and see if your own students can add to the list.  We used Padlet, but old-fashioned pencil and paper works, too!

Here are some other ideas from past posts for making the last couple of weeks fun and engaging:

I would also recommend checking out the Not Just Child’s Play blog by Joelle Trayers for ideas.  That woman always has creative suggestions that can be modified for any elementary grade level!

GoNoodle

Go Noodle
GoNoodle

It’s time for state-wide testing in my neck of the woods.  Even though we are not allowed to have computers on during the test, you might want to consider using GoNoodle after the test, particularly for students who have been sitting for awhile. They also recently added a feature called, “Flow,” which helps with stress.

I mentioned GoNoodle a while back in a post I did on “Physical Ways to Survive the Week Before Winter Break.”  Shortly afterward, I started meeting with my new Kinder GT students twice a week.  On Fridays, they miss Kinder Cafe (when the students go to the gym once a week to dance to different songs) to come to my class.  Last year, the students didn’t seem to mind.  But, this year I nearly had a mutiny on my hands. Even though, they only meet with me for an hour on Fridays, and we barely sit down the entire time, it was clear they needed a “Brain Break.” So, I thought I would give GoNoodle a try.

GoNoodle is free.  You can register your class (no individual student names necessary) and then get started.  It’s a fun way to gamify being physical for your entire class.  I usually choose a student randomly with Class Dojo to pick that day’s GoNoodle activity. (“Let it Go” and “Everything is Awesome” are huge favorites.) There are lots of videos to choose from – some including more physical activity than others.  Go Noodle keeps track of the time spent on the video, and gives the class points toward the next level.

The students enjoy the goofy looking characters and the silly pieces of trivia they offer.  But, of course, they enjoy the music and dancing the best.  Admittedly, not a lot of dancing goes on with “Let it Go.”  It’s actually more of a sing-along with dramatic magical gestures 🙂

If you are wondering about the appeal to older students, you might want to check out this post from @TechNinjaTodd about the way he uses GoNoodle with 5th graders.

Note: If you are in a district that blocks YouTube, you may have some trouble accessing some of the videos. Our district allows us to log-in, but the first time I tried to go directly “Be Happy” through GoNoodle without logging in, I had a group of very disappointed Kinders!

a selection of the GoNoodle Brain Breaks
a selection of the GoNoodle Brain Breaks

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…