Importance of movement

Our brains are activated when we move.  Moving energizes the muscles and nerves in the whole body, but it also stimulates the brain to be alert.  When having students move, cardiovascular exercise is not necessary.  The following ideas are great for beginning lessons with movement:

* A 5-minute walk in fresh air

* Slow stretching exercises

* "Brain Gym" type of movements where the student is given exercises that cross mid-lines of the body to stimulate simultaneous processing of both hemispheres of the brain, as well as intercommunication among various parts of the brain

* Throughout a lesson, having students alter postural position, such as: stand up, sit down, jump or hop, march, turn around, or move to another area of the room

* Give students opportunity to work in various seating positions, such as: hard chair at a desk or table, soft chair or sofa, lying on the floor, and curling up in a beanbag chair or on pillows

For other ideas on how movement affects learning, check in the Teacher Resources section of the catalog for the book entitled "Learning with the Body in Mind."  "Brain Gym," a resource manual for midline exercises is also listed in the Teacher Resources section.

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