get moving

Here’s a few ideas to get your kiddos moving this week – you’ll probably be right there moving with them too!

* Play some fun music (Christmas?) and when you pause the music they have to freeze until you press play again. Be silly, change the music style often and encourage them to dance slow, fast, high, low… This activity is good for working on their listening and following directions and to gets them to burn off some energy.
* Sun Salutation: Norah and I have done yoga poses together a few times, but never an entire series of poses in a row. When she would have her head down (on the floor basically) and in a pike position I”d always call out, “Downward Facing Dog” and now she calls that out when she finds herself in the pose. The benefits of yoga are numerous. While I am not a consistent Yogi (is that what it’s called?) I love how I feel after a class both physically and mentally.   The Sun Salutation is a series of yoga poses that if you take a yoga class you are likely to see. I taught it in my PE classes multiple times and a yoga unit always got a great response; I’m not sure if that’s because they got to lay around in the dark listening to mellow music at the end or they actually liked the workout. I’ve been wanting to try this for awhile and am going to do it this week in the mornings with her and see if it could become part of our morning routine. I’ve posted a video of the sequence of poses and I like how she incorporated counting with the poses – you’ll be working on yoga and counting! The picture below is pretty self explanatory – start at the top and work your way around the circle. In my searching I found the website, www.funkidsyoga.com and it looks like a pretty neat website with tons of ideas on poses to do with kids. I think I’ll be finding more to use from that site!
sun salutation
* My last movement idea for this week is just a simple ball toss. Find different sized balls you already have already the house (rolled up socks work just fine too!) then find different sized bowls, hula  hoops, boxes (anything to toss the balls into) and spread them around the room making some closer and farther away from where you’ll toss from. To make it easier you’ll want bigger items — boxes, laundry baskets etc., to make it harder you’ll want smaller – bowls, cups, etc. You could also use masking tape and tape it in a circle shape on the floor and they could try to toss the ball into the circle. Then let them go to town trying to toss the ball into the bowls/boxes etc. You can work on underhand toss or let them try to throw overhand. Wait until all the balls have been tossed before sending them out to collect and try again.
Activities that involve throwing a ball improve children’s coordination, body movement and gross motor skills but they’ll just think they are having fun!
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