Here are six simple and effective ways to get students moving in the classroom.Sep 28, 2022
It’s no secret that it’s difficult for students — and teachers, for that matter — to sit still at their desks for an entire day of school. Not only that, but research shows that students benefit from the opportunity to move around during the school day.
Here are the best ways to use movement to help students learn the subject matter.
Adding movement to your lessons doesn’t have to be complicated or chaotic. In fact, it can be as simple as standing. The stand-up game requires students to stand until they participate in the class discussion, which encourages students to engage with the material, while also getting them out of their seats. Bonus: This activity works well for students of all ages, from elementary to high school.
2. Using Gestures
Strategically implementing movement can help your students grasp concepts — and remember them! Try developing hand movements to help illustrate key concepts or words in your lessons. For example, teaching students a simple gesture that portrays a vocabulary word can help them remember the meaning of the word.
3. Role Playing
Role playing exercises require students to act out real-life scenarios with one or more of their peers, effectively pushing them out of their comfort zones — and their seats. Keep role plays in your class fun and effective by connecting them to a learning objective and creating clear guidelines, such as what content students should include or avoid.
4. Partnering Up
Shake up your lesson lecture with partner activities, which get your students moving by interacting with each other — via discussion, activities, or projects that apply to the curriculum they learned. For more movement, have your students find their own partner using a game that reinforces the lesson. For example, pass out cards that match up to form pairs and task students with finding their match. Math problems, vocabulary words, and historical facts make great fodder for match-up cards.
5. Acting It Out
Charades is a fun and fruitful game in the classroom. That’s because charades is basically teaching — without words. In order to act out a concept, students must have a firm grasp of the material. Then, they have to communicate that concept to the class by acting it out. Students not only get the opportunity to get out of their seats and engage with the class, but they also have to think critically to be able to communicate information in a relatable way.
6. Singing and Dancing
Music can be a powerful learning tool that helps students memorize and retain key concepts. Adding simple dance moves that correspond to the music gives students the opportunity to use up some energy, too. Videos are a great way to teach students songs and dance moves. Try tapping free resources like GoNoodle, which offers short videos organized by curriculum and grade level to make incorporating into your lesson plan a breeze.