Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Barnyard Frenzy!!

On Monday February 23, 2009, we had our second motor development lab at St. Mary's School Cortland. Unlike in our first lab where we simply played the games the kids wanted to, this time, each group had the opportunity to teach a lesson to the students. While we had prepared our lesson and organized what we wanted to do, we did not anticipate the energy and reaction of the kids...

Our group, 'Jumpin' Jack and the Core Four Plus 1,' taught an activity called "Barnyard Frenzy." For this activity, we used the big parachute as the central part of the game. The story is that there are baby animals underneathe the parachute and the goal is to save them and bring them to their parents who are outside the circle. The game began with a 'farmer' who would travel around the circle performing skills such as walking, galloping, skipping, and hopping. When the music stopped, they would go between two students on the parachute. These kids would be the 'farm hands' and go under to get the animal picture and bring it to the cone on the outside. The last one back was the new farmer and the game continued.

These rules seemed simple enough. But we weren't ready for the kids reaction. As soon as they saw the parachute, they went nuts! They started rolling in it, pulling it, and running underneathe. It took a while to start the game because we had to wait for some kids to get out! When the game was played, there was little confusion but due to the low number of kids participating at a time, many became distracted and bored. We eventually adapted to this and changed the game by having everyone hold up the parachute and travel in a circle performing the locomotor skills. And at the end, we concluded by having everyone go underneathe and sit and share a laugh!

This was the first actual teaching experience for all of us in a school setting. We definately were not ready for all that was thrown out before us. The kids were excited and wanted to play and we were the ones who had to keep up. But all in all it went very well and is a valuable experience to learn from. Next week, we're going to try and make our lesson better and keep the kids excited!

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