Now that the season of buds and blossoms is in full swing, spring your students into action for a healthier life! May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, the perfect time to reinforce the value of exercise and physical activity for better health. The Web has just the resources to help you with new games, ideas, and lessons that will make your students jump for joy! Included: Stretches for cyber fitness too!
True or false? Most people get enough physical activity from their normal daily routine.
True or false? You don't have to train like a marathon runner to become more physically fit.
True or false? All exercises give you the same benefits.
True or false? To help stay physically active, include a variety of activities.
Do your students have misconceptions about the time required to improve their health with regular exercise? Challenge them to answer the true-false questions above and seven more of them that are part of the Check Your Physical Activity IQ quiz.
The quiz will show your students (and you!) how a few minutes a day can help make them healthier people! After they take the quiz, encourage students to talk about ways that all of you can incorporate exercise into your day. Then create a realistic class plan that involves 10 or 15 minutes of exercise at some point during the school day -- and implement that plan for one week.
If you're looking for fitness activities to include in your plan, then run to some of the following Web locations for some great fitness lesson ideas!
The following activities come from exceptional physical education resources on the Web. If you like a specific activity, be sure to check out the other lessons the site provides!
Physical education -- Name Game. One great way to have students work together and work out is the Name Game from the Ayden Elementary School Physical Education site. Students spell their names and use a list of physical activities to show them which exercises they should perform for each letter. A sample exercise sheet is included.
Physical education -- aerobics. Are you into aerobics? Turnstep.com illustrates some common moves in step aerobics with great animations and text. Let the moves give you ideas for a quick stretching and wake-up activity to break up your instructional time. The Aerobics Dictionary also has some patterns to try that have been submitted by its visitors. After you have introduced a few moves, have your students take turns leading the group in a stretch.
Dance is a great physical activity that you might not immediately think of when choosing an exercise. Here are a few suggestions and leads to sites with instructions!
Square dancing. Even if you are not a natural dancer, you can teach your students a few square dancing moves with the Callerlab Basic & Mainstream Definitions. Remember that your students aren't experts either! Make a list of the moves that you have taught, put on some country music, and call out the moves to the class.
Country western. Many students have heard about country western dancing, but how many have tried it? Here's your chance! Country-Western Swing Dancing for Beginners offers instructional videos for country western dances.
Tap. One of the best physical activities in the early-elementary classroom doesn't involve balls, ropes, or mats. It's tap dancing! Attach pennies to the bottoms of your students' shoes with loops of tape, put on some music, and watch them go. Your students will discover an entirely new type of music (as they get a workout), and you get to enjoy the show! Consider holding a dance contest in your classroom. You may decide to limit your students to one type of dance and music or make it as broad as you like.
Article by Cara Bafile
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