Fun Ways To Learn Science In The Classroom – Move And Learn

How Movements Can Boost The Interest In Learning?

Do your students constantly wiggle their bodies after a few minutes into class? Or, do they swing their feet under the chair or engage in conversation in between the class? When this occurs, it is clear that kids are losing focus and becoming significantly disengaged. Researchers have found that less movement in the classroom can be a deterrent to learning, and kids tend to lose their mental stamina. Studies have also demonstrated that including movement in the classroom can enhance student performance and engagement.

Private schools like Babaji Vidhyashram School in Chennai have adopted innovative methods to improve physical and virtual student engagement. This article gives a brief insight into the methods incorporated in these schools and how well students have responded to them. 

4 Top Strategies To Incorporate Movements In A Science Class

Multiple choice answers and body responses

Make your multiple-choice question answering sessions interesting by assigning body movements to each option. Explain to your students the various answer options and the different movements each should represent. Tell them not to reveal the answers until you ask the question or say “GO.”. For instance, if your question is, “Is an iron nail a conductor or an insulator?” make your students pretend as insulators or conductors. A kid posing as a conductor can wave his hands in all directions like a traffic cop, and a kid posing as an insulator can cross or uncross his arms. The primary purpose of these activities is to engage students physically in the classroom and provide educators with an opportunity to assess students effectively. 

Scoot

Students are asked to move around the whole room to answer questions in this strategy. Tutors post questions around the classroom. To reach their questions, the students must move away from their seats. It is highly recommended that teachers post their questions high up on the walls or in a big hallway so that kids do not remain seated but move around. Moving around in the classroom engages students and allows teachers to work with smaller groups for extra support.

Science Discussion cards

Discussing science concepts with science discussion cards can be an effective way to engage your students. Hand out a science discussion card to each student. Play the music and let them move around. They should pair up with the person they reach when the music stops. Afterwards, each pair of kids must discuss their science cards or even trade their cards. It’s best to do this activity when you have time on your hands and are reviewing the chapter. 

Body modelling

Body modelling is a popular move-and-learn strategy among students. Students use their bodies to model scientific concepts. Below are five different scientific concepts that body modelling can effectively represent.

  • Matter: The topic “matter” spans the middle school grade and is an important concept that must be understood thoroughly. The teacher can instruct students to make movements specific to each type of matter, such as solid, liquid, or gas. For instance, students modelling solids can vibrate and move slowly, whereas the one representing gas can move anywhere at anytime. You can also ask kids to pick a body part and describe its properties.
  • Force and motion: For middle schoolers, force and motion can be confusing concepts to grasp. The model can be used to demonstrate Newton’s law of gravity and concepts like acceleration and friction. Students can be made to run with or without their socks on to demonstrate friction, mass, and resistance. Likewise, students can demonstrate Newton’s third law of motion by bouncing on the wall to demonstrate equal and opposite reactions.
  • Energy: Make energy concepts interesting by engaging students in energy transferring activities. Let them hold hands and make waves. The more force they apply, the bigger the waves form; a classic example of energy transfer. This activity can also teach wavelength, frequency, and other concepts. Similarly, have kids rub their palms to demonstrate how mechanical energy is converted into thermal energy. 
  • Biology: If Darwin’s theory of evolution confuses your students, have them role-play different organisms. You can demonstrate evolution’s benefits by having them close their eyes or bend their limbs. By assigning roles to each student, you can make them enact a food chain. Students are tasked with hunting organisms according to the food chain hierarchy. Ask the kids what could go wrong when there is an imbalance in the entire chain. 
  • Earth system: Students can be made to enact planets and made to understand concepts about gravity pulls. In the same way, students can model current convection movements by forming a circle and pulling apart. Kids are likely to understand concepts more deeply when they are made to visualize trenches, mountains, or earth’s crusts with their body movements. 

Key takeaway:

Hands-on activities are the best way to help students understand scientific theories.   There are a number of top private schools like Babaji Vidhyashram School in Chennai, that have successfully incorporated body movement into science instruction. You should consider doing the same. Nevertheless, you should make sure that each student gets a chance to engage in role play and learn from it. 

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