Hi and welcome back to Attention-ology for K – 5 Teachers!
Get Kids Moving to Get Ready to Learn
Do you have students that seem like they’re still asleep when they get to school?
Here’s an idea to help kids wake up…lead them in some warm-ups at the start of the school day.
Every gym-goer, athlete, race-walker…you name it…knows that it’s important to warm up before exercise. Teachers can put that same concept to work in school. Why wait for P.E., especially when physical education is limited to one day a week as a “special.”
Why wait for Recess? It’s usually scheduled for later in the school day. Teachers who let students warm up to wake up first thing in the morning will have a class full of more alert students. In a few minutes’ time, you can help kids “pump oxygen to their brains!” A warm-up can be as simple as asking the class to do five jumping jacks in place. Or…
Pick up on kids’ interest in sports to wake them up with sport-related warm-ups.
In the US and in other communities worldwide kids (and adults) love to shoot hoops and follow pro basketball.
Invite kids to “give math a shot.” Call on sluggish students; challenge them to walk up to your improvised net and make a shot at the correct answer to a math problem you pose.
Hand them a miniature soft basketball (no concern for classroom damage with toy balls) and act like they’re super sports stars with math problems.
Add some language arts connections to your sports-related warm-ups to wake students up by holding a contest.
Get kids to submit suggested names for your class “team.” Write the entries on slips of paper; drop them in a bag or box (preferably one with a sporty design) and hold a random drawing for a winner.
Team names generate excitement. Sports fans are passionate about their teams. In the current NBA playoffs, teams include the New York Knicks; the Boston Celtics, Miami Heat; the San Antonio Spurs the Oklahoma City Thunder and others in the eastern and western (US) regions.
How else can you use quick warm-ups – physical and mental – to wake up weary students? Here’s how…