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Ready-to-Use Teaching Ideas: Movement
- Tissue-paper streamers
- Science concepts
- Math concepts
- Language development
Take advantage of windy days with the following physical activities that encourage children to use their bodies to explore nature.
Touching the Wind. Take children outdoors to feel the wind blow. Have them notice how the wind moves their hair or clothing. Which direction does the hair blow? What else around them is the wind blowing? Does everything move in the same direction? Have them lift their arms to feel the wind. Can they catch the wind as it blows? Can they move or push the wind?
Streamer Dance. Give each child a long tissue-paper streamer to attach to a fence or pole. Have children observe how the wind moves the streamers, and ask questions to encourage discussion. What happens when the wind blows? Why do the streamers move? How do we know in which direction the wind is blowing? Now give everyone a streamer to hold. Invite them to dance along as the wind blows their streamers.
Wind Dancing. Have the children observe different things that the wind blows, such as trees, branches, plants, feathers, grass, paper, or light objects on the ground. Invite children to move their bodies like objects blowing in the wind.
Wind Music. What types of wind sounds can the children make? Have them add the wind sounds as they continue their dance.
Remember: Since repetition is important for children’s learning, take advantage of additional windy days by revisiting old activities and teaching new ones.
Shadow Art. Take your child outdoors on a sunny day, bringing along some colored chalk. Find an area on the ground where your shadows are visible, and have your child stand still while you trace her silhouette. Then invite her to trace yours. Now use the chalk to color in or decorate each other’s shadow tracings.
Curriculum Connection: Science
What Will the Wind Blow? Collect a variety of materials, such as fabric, cardboard, feathers, a wooden block, a rock, and a paper bag. Ask children to predict which items the wind will move, recording their comments and predictions. Now take the items outside to test them. How are the items that the wind can move similar? How are the objects that the wind cannot move different from the movable items? Will the wind blow different materials if they are placed upright, as opposed to lying down flat? What happens when the paper bag is opened?
Gilberto and the Wind
by Marie Hall Ets
I Face the Wind
by Vicki Cobb
by Grace Lin
(Random House, 2002)