Incorporating Movement into Sessions

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Why Incorporate Movement:

  • Using physical movement when a child is practicing a skill will activate more parts of the brain and make more connections, which will lead to better retention.
  • Physical movement will make the activity more fun so you’re less likely to have bad behaviors and more likely to have engaged students

How to Incorporate Movement:

1. Yoga Poses

  • Follow multi-step directions to get into yoga poses
  • Hold a yoga pose while you practice a skill repeatedly (like saying a word list)
  • Use yoga poses to get your body running right before listening to a teacher demonstrating a new skill

2. Gross Motor

  • Have the student play hopscotch (jump in squares drawn in chalk on the ground outside) and say their word or sound each time they hop
  • Each time they practice their skill, have them take one step up on a flight of stairs.  If they mess up, they have to go down one.  See who can win this very slow race.
  • Change position every 5 words (sit, stand, lay down, etc.)
  • Practice their word or skill while jumping on a trampoline
  • For minimally verbal children, do a movement activity they enjoy (like swinging) and then stop them in the middle and make them request it again

3. Fine Motor

  • Have students trace shapes or lines while they practice their words/sounds/skills
  • Have students stack small blocks as tall as possible, one for each time they practice their word/sound/skill
  • Have students write their words or sentences down while they practice them out loud
  • Have students sort flashcards into piles while they say them out loud
  • Hide the student’s words in a tub of dried beans or other sensory material and have them fish it out so they can practice it