Class Energizers

Physical Education Classroom Energizers

Energizer #1

Please practice the following activity in your classroom as a warm-up, transition, or closing activity.

“Repetitive gross motor movement strengthens secondary dendritic branching. That’s the part of the nerve cell that remembers details. Daily exercise cements the details learned in the previous 48 hours. The human brain unconsciously processes cognitive information while you’re at play or while you’re involved in physical activity. If that physical activity doesn’t take place, anywhere from 20% to 80% of that learned cognitive information is lost.”

Jean Blades Madigan
Former Texas Teacher of the Year and a World-Renowned Neurokinesiologist

Cross lateral movement helps to integrate brain hemispheres. We all naturally have a dominate hemisphere but when we use the corpus callosum (the part of the brain that sends information from one side to the other) we actually increase the blood flow to all of the brain.

Thumb & Index Finger Drill:

This is a fun and quick activity that only takes a minute to practice. Place one hand out in front of you, with the thumb up and the other hand out in front of you with the pointer (index) finger out. On a vocal command of "switch", switch the fingers on your hands, the thumb-up hand to the pointer hand and the pointer hand to the thumb-up hand. Repeat the “switch” command several times. Begin slowly and gradually “pick up the pace” of the switch commands. This drill does get easier with practice.

Whole brain is always better than half a brain!!


Energizer #2

Please practice the following activity in your classroom as a warm-up, transition, or closing activity.

"Basic motor skills lay the foundation for other learning. What makes us think is what makes us move. The opposite of exercise, sitting in a chair, inhibits learning. When you sit for longer than 17 minutes, blood pools in your hamstrings, the large muscles in the back of your leg. That pulls needed oxygen and glucose from the brain and when that happens the body produces melatonin and your brain is essentially telling your body, “You can go to sleep because no movement has occurred.”

Jean Blades Madigan
Former Texas Teacher of the Year and a World-Renowned Neurokinesiologist

 

North, South, East, West:

This is an activity that classroom teachers can use to check for understanding, review for assessments, or energize a class that has been sitting for a long period of time. The teacher or leader calls out a clue or asks a question and the players respond by facing the direction of the correct answer. Clues or questions may be easy (face west) or more difficult (face the Atlantic Ocean).

Variations:

  • Elementary or beginning levels may have North, South, East, and West, posted on the proper wall in the room.
  • Ask compound questions (face the state whose capital is Albany)
  • Add aspects of fitness (turn south and do 5 push ups, sit ups etc...)
  • With the class sitting or standing or even lying on the ground, have students stretch to the North, South, East, West.
  • Multiple Choice Questions – North =A, South=B, East=C, West=D.
    • Face the direction of the correct answer.
    • Assign a different exercise for each direction they face.

Energizer #3

Please practice the following activity in your classroom as a warm-up, transition, or closing activity.

“Laboratory studies in mice and humans, for instance, show that exercise prompts the brain to produce greater amounts of a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor or BDNF, which Dr. Ratey likes to call “Miracle-Gro” for the brain. It encourages brain cells to sprout synapses, which are crucial to forming the connections the brain needs to make in order to learn. It also strengthens cells and protects them from dying out. Other research also suggests that exercise plays a role in neurogenesis, the production of new brain cells, in middle-aged and older adults and in laboratory animals.”

- Dr. John Ratey M.D
Harvard Medical School

 

In order for man to succeed in life, God provided him with two means, education and physical activity. Not separately, one for the soul and the other for the body, but for the two together. With these two means, man can attain perfection.”

- Plato

Gotcha:

This is a quick activity that classroom teachers can use to energize a class before they take a test, as a transition, or for a class that has been sitting for a long period of time.

  • Students stand in a circle.
  • Students hold their left palm facing up and flat to the left below just shoulder level.
  • Students place the point of their right index finger in the palm of the person standing on their right.
  • Teacher gives the command “Gotcha”.
  • Students try to grab the index finger in their left hand, and at the same time remove their right index finger before it gets caught.
gotcha1 gotch2

Created on July 7th, 2011 | Last updated on November 24, 2013