So you’ve taken on the role as teacher-mumma for the first time. Your lessons are going great, BUT, your kiddos just can’t sit still or seem to be off with the fairies! What is the problem?
This issue most likely has nothing to do with your teaching or learning environment but probably more to do with your child’s limited attention span and innate need to MOVE!!
To put it all in perspective, your child’s attention span is equivalent to their age. So for my 5-year old, I would expect that she could sit and listen to me for at most 5 minutes before I need to change things up. Which means, move her to a different location to do another activity, get her to stand up and move while we continue the activity, start working or simply change what we are doing altogether.
However, even with all these changes, as she is working, her brain is doing a lot of work and will become tired. Her attention span will wane and her ability to complete tasks will become more drawn out. You will see it in your child’s body language and in the speed in which they complete tasks. As the day goes on tasks will take longer and become more difficult for your child.
To help your child overcome these issues it is best to catch them before they even begin! Regular ‘brain-breaks’ can help a child overcome fatigue and continue learning for longer.
This is where The Brain Break Jar comes in!
In our house we have ‘brain-breaks’ every 15 minutes. At this point, my daughter will pull an activity card out of The Brain Break Jar and complete that activity.
All the activities on the cards have been chosen specifically to get your child moving or using other parts of their brain in order to relax and refresh them.
The list of activities in the jar are:
Some pointers when using the jar:
1. The length and number of activities completed at each ‘brain-break’ session is completely up to you
2. Do remember that this is intended only to be a short break – you may like to set a time limit or repetition limit to help your child know when it is time to return to normal work.
3. The activities are very open-ended to allow you the flexibility to adapt them to suit your own learning environment
4. Be clear about the guidelines for each activity with your child from the start
I hope you enjoy using the jar as much as me and my daughter have. You can find your copy of The Brain Break Jar here.
If you are looking for other resources to use perhaps in the Dance Off and Yoga for kids activities, please check out the following YouTube videos and websites:
Cosmic Kids – Yoga for kids
From the Pond Colouring Club – Great free colouring pages (just make sure you choose the free option)
Dance Like You’ve Got Ant In Your Pants – Movement song
Can’t Stop the Feeling – Trolls song
Simon Says – movement song
Super Stretches – Stretches for Kids
Let’s Move Jack Hartman – Brain Break Song for Kids
Move and Freeze – Song to get your kiddos moving
Stir it Up By the Learning Station – movement song
Shake your Sillies Out – movement song