We spent a long time today talking about movement. How do you get from one place to another? We focused on Locomotor Movement: moving through space from one point to another (walk, run, jump, hop, leap, skip, gallop, slide, roll) as part of our warm-up. Students got to choose how to get from one place to another.
Do you want to walk? Do you want to dance? Swim? Bike? Skateboard?
Students were given options and chose a way for others to try. It’s a first step in choreography: having your motions played out by others. We then tried moving as partners (working together in pairs, part of our work to build community and to problem-solve) as we tried moving like animals. We started with a bear, then a horse, then a squirrel. We then told what we did in complete sentences, a most difficult task for students with low-level English proficiency.
“I was a bear.” “I was a horse.” This focuses the activity, gives students a chance to practice that past-tense verb and to work on projecting their voices, which just so happens to be one of the Common Core State Standards we are working on mastering. After that, we brainstormed a list of animals and tried moving like the animal of our choice. This is key in building independence and creativity into our learning. These goals can be seen in the graduate expectations developed for Burlington High School.
We finished up this exercise by using complete sentences–always difficult for students with low level English proficiency. Lida is always trying to find a way to bring our curriculum into her teaching. It’s so cool. Things we wouldn’t think about normally fit in so well when we can break it up with movement.
And then, we started talking about comparatives and superlatives. We started by talking about the quarter as the BIGGEST coin and the dime as the SMALLEST. We were able to jump fairly quickly into big, bigger, biggest and small, smaller, smallest. And we lined up from biggest to smallest.
SO COOL when that stuff comes together!
We also spent time remembering our dances we made up the last two weeks, letting small groups negotiate meaning and to try the task in an environment that could prove to be less stressful.
Our last hurrah was a double high-five. Can you do it fast? Who can do it faster?