These days we are hearing so much about how little physical activity time kids are getting at school. It happens for a variety of reasons – whether it is an increased pressure to complete curriculum requirements, or an over-crowding issue, leaving little indoor gym space. Teachers are encouraged to do “DPA” – daily physical activity for about 15 minutes, but it is hard to find activities to engage the entire class.
A co-worker introduced me to the wonderful site called GoNoodle. It is a completely free site that offers hundreds of 2-4 minute physical activity videos which can be completed in your classroom, in very little space. The videos are organized according to type (yoga, stretching, high-intensity, etc) and are 100% commercial free! There is NO chance that an ad will pop up in the corner, and you don’t have to sit through those ads on YouTube.
The videos are even grouped into larger chunks, called “Indoor Recess” and is perfect for those rainy days when kids can’t get out. They’re about 10-20 minutes worth of videos, one after another. We did a lot of this during that really cold winter, when the kids were indoors for days and weeks at a time.
My personal favourite group of videos is by two guys called “Koo Koo Kangaroo.” They are really silly, goofy, and still pretty cool – enough that the grades 4-5 students will still participate. The songs have a great beat, and everyone sings along.
When you, as a teacher/adult, set up your account, you choose one “mascot” to work on. Your mascot (silly cartoon character) earns points for every video you do. When you hit 10 points, your character enters the “Transmorgrifier” and gets some improvements, such as giant muscles, or gets taller, etc. The kids enjoy choosing a character together and watching it move through the various levels.
Check out the site, and let me know if you have any questions. It’s been a lifesaver – both in the classroom, and even at home with my own kids!