As part of our mission to inspire a more ‘whole child’ development approach to dance, we developed the Groove Child® Primary Teachers Toolkit – filled with easy to use, creative and adaptable movement exercises for Primary school staff.
The toolkit is a way to inspire our school teachers to use dance and creative movement more frequently (daily, if possible!) as an active learning vehicle in the both the classroom and the the PE session.
The Groove Child INSET training for school staff covers key exercises they can use for different age groups, how they can be creatively adapted to suit any topic, session plan examples for both Dance and classroom sessions such as PSHE, and set music/choreography for pretty much every common term topic they can imagine! (And if it’s not in there – we’ll create it!)
So THIS term our co-founder, Amy Reynolds, was trialing parts of the toolkit with the lovely Mrs Kate Jennings (TA) at Mudeford Community Infants School.
Week 1 involved sessions with two Year 1 classes, with Groove Child exercises and set work tailored to the theme of an English Country Garden.
Through Amy’s guidance the children began with a Butterfly visualisation to focus their mind and then set about various warm ups, improvisations and confidence boosters involving everything from scurrying ants and twisted tree roots, to rhythmical jumping frogs and blossoming sunflowers.
Then using our Groove Dice exercise children volunteered with enthusiasm one after another, to show their movement ideas for different types of weather – very topical for the UK these past few weeks!
After a few minutes of working in small groups to create short garden/weather inspired sequences all children confidently performed their ideas to the rest of the class.
Finally, the session finished with work on a set choreography led by Amy, inspired again by the theme, that also included one or two of the children’s ideas.
Aside from all the physical benefits we know that dance brings, the toolkit can be a powerful way teach children to think outside the box, creative problem-solving, turn-taking, collaborating, respecting each others idea, taking pride in their ideas, and celebrating individuality.
For this first week Mrs Jennings joined in with the class, observing some of the toolkit exercises and how they were used for the theme.
NEXT SESSION, Amy will demonstrate a class with an entirely different theme – but still using the structure, exercises, and aims from the previous. THEN it will be over to Mrs Jennings to plan and deliver the third week’s session, using the session plans and guidance Amy provides….we can’t wait to see how she gets on!
And the feedback will ensure we can tweak the ease of use further if needed. The last thing we want to do is give teachers MORE work than they already have. We want it to be light, fun, and creative for the teacher/staff member as well as the children, and not feel time-consuming in terms of planning a session.
Stay tuned to see how it goes. It might be emotional… 🙂
Groove Child® classes are designed to help teachers nurture children’s positive sense of self, confidence, and self expression in a way that celebrates their individuality through creative movement and dance. Primary Head Teachers – visit our website TODAY and contact us to receive more details regardingCPD workshops in your area or personalised INSET training days for your staff: www.groovechilddance.com