Mrs. Deater Has an Active Classroom and You Can Too!
Natalie Deater is a Fourth Grade Teacher at Lovettsville Elementary School in Lovettsville, VA
What do you notice about your students when they’ve been sitting too long?
When students are sitting too long, they begin to lose focus for the topic being discussed. A simple walk to another location in the classroom to collaborate with a partner can be all the movement they need to refocus on the lesson.
How do you incorporate movement into your classroom?
I use movement throughout our school day because I have flexible seating in my classroom. By using flexible seating, students can move around the room and pick a spot that works best for them. Students are responsible for their learning and doing what works best for them, and in my classroom that includes taking movement breaks when they feel the need to move.
What impact does classroom physical activity have on your students?
When students are physically active throughout the school day, they focus better and are more prepared to learn. Movement in the classroom can change a student’s mood which then helps them have a more positive attitude about completing their work.
Why do you think teachers should include physical activity in class?
Teachers should include movement and physical activity in their classroom because it helps students learn. They can develop better relationships with peers if the movement also involves collaboration with peers or teachers. By allowing students to be active in the classroom, they get a quick break and can prepare for the next task or lesson.
Any tips or advice for teachers who are hesitant to introduce movement into their lessons?
Add some small movement breaks into your classroom, even if it’s just having students move around the room. Allowing students to decide when they need to move will give them the opportunity to give themselves little breaks when they need it. There are so many options on how to add movement into your classroom from brain breaks to flexible seating, pick something you think would work for you and give it a try!
For more information about Active Classrooms Week including toolkits to help plan and get the word out, visit the Active Classrooms Week page.