Wednesday, January 25, 2017
Do yoga and exercise belong in the classroom?
I am a first grade teacher. I love first grade. First graders love school and their teacher! First graders are also full of energy and love to be up and moving, not sitting for long periods of time. Recently, I had a meeting about a student who is full of excitement and energy most of the day. We were brainstorming ways to bring that energy down at certain parts of the day. Someone suggested yoga. I have used a wonderful website called Go Noodle for brain breaks and to get students up and moving, so I thought I would give it a try for the calming aspect. Each day after recess and lunch students return to the dark classroom and head to a spot in the classroom to perform a three to four minute calming activity on Go Noodle using the Smartboard. This activity was originally started for the one student who needed something to bring down the raised energy level of recess and lunch. However, the results have been so beneficial for everyone in my class! It has become one of the best decisions I have ever made in my classroom. The energy level of my whole class drops dramatically and allows the students to calm down and refocus before our next academic task. I also participate with the students and I have found I really enjoy this break as well. In addition, I also noticed not only does the energy level decrease and allows students to re-focus, but it also allows students to work on stability, balance and core strength that may not be well developed in little first grade bodies. Yoga, exercise, and movement definitely belong in my classroom.