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Movement in the Classroom
By: Physical Education Teacher Jenna Lucas
Over the past few years I have seen a great push in schools across the country for getting children moving in their classrooms. Research is showing all of the connections between active children and learning. Many educators from all over have seen the benefits of recess and physical education and have begun to take this concept a step further.
As a P.E. teacher, I can’t help but continue the push for more movement in the classroom. I have been reading a few books on this topic and studying more intentional use of movement in the classroom. One book is called the Kinesthetic Classroom by Mike Kuczala. This book talks about movement, but not just for getting energy out or for “brain breaks.” It talks about specific movements that can help with long term and short term memory, development of class cohesion and even teach certain content.
Although some of this research is still new, most of it is just common sense for what we already know about the brain. A small example would be warming up or gearing up the brain by using cross-lateral movements (such as grabbing/reaching for something on the left side of the body with the right hand). This forces both hemispheres to engage and work together which can increase energy and blood flow. Connections have even been identified between children who have trouble crossing the midline of their bodies and difficulty with reading.
What I love about Rossman is the support and value that is put on physical education and movement for our students. Partnering our everyday physical education program with this new wave of movement in the classroom, Rossman teachers are working to create an optimal learning environment for everyone.
Rossman School, nestled on a 20-acre campus in Creve Coeur, is an independent preparatory school for students in Junior Kindergarten (four years old) through Grade 6. The school’s mission is to provide a strong, well-balanced education in a nurturing school community committed to excellence. Dedicated to developing personal, nurturing relationships with each child, Rossman’s experienced educators provide a solid foundation in academics, athletics and arts while emphasizing strong character development and leadership skills. Request a free Rossman School brochure here.