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(Open thematic poster-Gymnastics) Print, laminate, and decorate the walls of your daycare with all kinds of posters.
(Open stickers-Gymnastics) Print the illustrations on adhesive paper and use them to create original stickers for your group.
(Open educa-theme-Gymnastics) Print and laminate the different elements representing the theme. Use them to present the theme to your group (and their parents) while decorating your daycare.
(Open educa-decorate-Gymnastics) Print, laminate, and cut out the illustrations. Use them to decorate your walls and set the mood for the theme.
Transform your various corners by adding gymnastics equipment and material. Create a special gymnastics area. Set exercise mats or towels on the floor and add cushions and naptime mattresses. Display pictures of gymnasts on the walls of your daycare.
Perpetual calendar-Gymnastics Day
(Open perpetual calendar-Gymnastics Day) Print and use the poster to announce a special activity-filled day. Ask parents to dress their child in comfortable clothes and plan several gymnastics-themed activities and exercises. Serve lunch and snacks on exercise mats, just for fun.
(Open picture game-Gymnastics) Print and laminate the pictures in the format you prefer. Use them to spark a conversation with your group. Ask children questions about gymnastics.
(Open picture game-Gymnastics) Print and laminate the pictures in the format you prefer. Use a hole-punch to make a hole in the upper right and left corner of each picture. Stack the pictures and insert a ring through each set of holes. The flipogram is easy to manipulate. Simply show children how they can lift a picture and flip it under the stack. Name each item with your group. Use the flipogram to encourage children to talk during circle time and to ask them questions about the theme.
During circle time, ask children if they have ever done gymnastics or if they know what gymnastics involve. Name various gymnastics apparatus (balance beam, uneven bars, parallel bars, vault, floor, pommel horse, still rings, etc.). Use pictures to represent each one.
Before children arrive in the morning, set several cushions, exercise mats, balls, rings, etc. on the floor. Display gymnastics-related pictures on your daycare walls. Wear activewear and a sports headband. Once all the children have arrived, prepare a gymnastics circuit with their help.
This tool was created in response to a special request received. (Open poster-Directed activities) Print and display.
The pictures may be used as a memory game or to spark a conversation with the group. Use them to decorate the daycare or a specific thematic corner. (Open picture game-Gymnastics) Print, laminate, and store in a "Ziploc" bag or in your thematic bins.
(Open picture game-Gymnastics) Print the pictures twice and use them for a memory game.
ACTIVITY SHEETS AND WRITING ACTIVITIES
Writing activities-G like gymnastics
(Open writing activities-G like gymnastics) Print for each child or laminate for use with a dry-erase marker.
Creating your own activity binder
Laminate several activity sheets and writing activities and arrange them in a binder along with dry-erase markers. Leave the binder in your writing area and let children complete the pages as they wish. At the end of the day, simply wipe off their work so the activity binder can be reused.
(Open educa-spots-Gymnastics) Print for each child. Use bingo markers to add color inside the circles. If you don't have bingo markers, stickers or cereal can also be used.
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print several word flashcards. Glue them on pieces of paper, laminate them, and arrange them in a binder. Show children how they can trace the words using dry-erase markers. If you wish, leave room under each word so children can try to write the words without tracing the letters.
(Open educa-nuudles-Gymnastics) Print for each child. Have children color the sheet and use Magic Nuudles to give it a three-dimensional look. Variation: You don't have Magic Nuudles? Have children fill the spaces designed for Magic Nuudles with bingo markers or stickers. To order Magic Nuudles.
The flashcards may be used during circle time to spark a conversation with the group or in your reading and writing area. They may also be used to identify your thematic bins. (Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) exercise mat, mirror, stretching, ribbon, gymnastics, gymnast, balance beam, parallel bars, horse, trampoline, gymnasium, rings
Point to (or name) the items
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print, laminate, and display the word flashcards on a wall within your circle time area or on a large piece of cardboard that can be moved around. Children take turns identifying a flashcard or naming an item.
(Open sequential story-Gymnastics) Print the story. Laminate the illustrations and cut them out. Children must place the illustrations in the correct order.
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print and laminate the word flashcards. Have each child pick a word and present it to the group (ex. gymnasium). Ask them questions to see what they know about the theme.
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print many copies of the word flashcards and encourage children to use scrabble tiles to write the words. Manipulating the small tiles represents a great fine motor skill exercise. At the same time, children will notice which letters make up the different words.
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print two copies of several different word flashcards. On a large piece of cardboard, stick one copy of each flashcard vertically to create a word column. Cut the second copy of each word flashcard so you have the word on one side and the illustration on the other side. Attach Velcro behind each part as well as to the right of the uncut flashcards (on the cardboard). Arrange the cut flashcards on the table and encourage children to look at your flashcard board to identify a matching word and illustration. When they succeed, they may stick them next to the corresponding flashcard, on your board. This exercise will help children associate words with pictures.
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print several word flashcards. Use a hole-punch to make a hole at the top of each flashcard. Thread a ribbon through each hole and tie a knot. Bring the word flashcards outside and encourage children to use them to decorate a tree. Every time a child adds a flashcard, invite him/her to "read" the corresponding word. Children will be happy to repeat this activity many times. Eventually, they will learn to recognize the words.
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print two copies of several word flashcards. Hang one copy of each word on an indoor clothesline with colourful clothespins. Arrange the copies in a pile on a table. Let children take turns picking a word and finding the matching word on the clothesline. When they find a match, they can place the flashcard on top of the one that was already hanging on the clothesline. Help younger children manipulate the clothespins if necessary.
(Open word flashcards-Gymnastics) (Open giant word flashcards-Gymnastics) Print several word flashcards and hide them throughout your daycare or yard. Divide your group into two teams. When you give them the signal, children must search for the flashcards for a pre-determined period, for example three minutes. When the time is up, children must be able to "read" their flashcards to earn a point for their team. If they are unable to find the correct word, the other team can earn the point if they succeed.
ROUTINES AND TRANSITIONS
Encourage children to move around the daycare and up and down hallways performing various gymnastics-related moves such as walking on tiptoes, a sideway shuffle, etc.
PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND MOTOR SKILLS
(Open body part die) Print and laminate. Glue the illustrations on the sides of a cardboard box to create a giant die. Children take turns rolling the die and executing a stretch or exercise involving the illustrated body part. For example, if the die lands on the illustration of the head, the child can perform head rotations.
Organize a brief aerobics session to prepare children for other activities. (Open games-Aerobics) Print and laminate the illustrations and use them to introduce your group to the various moves.
My motor skills area
Set up a motor skills corner within your daycare. It could include a miniature trampoline, a few hula hoops, a balance beam, or just simple exercise mats on which children can perform somersaults. Children will enjoy using this corner to release any extra energy they may have. You may want to make this corner permanent. It can greatly reduce the need for timeouts.
Every morning, start the day with 10 minutes of aerobics. Gather your group in a large room or in your yard. Play fast-paced music and encourage them to perform a series of jumps and exercises. If you prefer, several exercise DVDs created for children are available in big-box stores.
Use string to create a course children must complete. Thread the string between chair legs, behind and over furniture items, etc. Make use of items that can safely be explored by little ones. Children follow the string, moving over and under a variety of obstacles.
Ribbon obstacle course
Stick ribbon on the floor to represent a path children will follow. The ribbon can, for example, lead to the bathroom or the kitchen. Children will love walking on this colourful "road".
Jump, jump, jump
Use string to hang soft toys (stuffed animals) form the ceiling. Encourage children to jump to touch them.
Hold a hula hoop out to the side. Children take turns walking or jumping through the hula hoop. Once they have all had a turn, raise or lower the hula hoop. If you wish, alternate between high and low.
Give each child a hula hoop. Show them how they can spin it around their waist.
Invite children to stand in a circle, holding hands. Introduce a hula hoop inside the circle and close it off again. The goal of the game is for the hula hoop to make its way around the circle without children ever letting go. Will your group figure out how they can succeed?
Spinning hula hoop
Spin a hula hoop in the centre of your playing area. Children take turns spinning the hula hoop. They must try to make it spin continuously.
Boat on the water
Divide your group into pairs. Children sit face to face with their partner, inside a hula hoop. Encourage them to sway back and forth, as if they were in a boat.
Hula hoop targets
Set hula hoops on the floor or hang them from the ceiling and invite children to throw soft balls or bean bags through them.
Set a long rope on the floor to represent a balance beam. Invite children to imagine that it is a few feet off the ground. Have them walk on the rope barefoot. They must never set both feet beside the rope. You may ask them to walk backwards, to jump on the rope, to crawl on the rope, etc. Variation: Use colourful electrical tape to draw a narrow rectangle on the floor to represent your balance beam. Encourage children to perform different moves.
Like circus tight-rope walkers, invite children to walk on your balance beam or a rope while holding an umbrella.
Set a small stool, a recycling bin, or any other item you have on hand on the floor to represent a pommel horse. Show children how they must jump over it.
Set several exercise mats on the floor and invite children to perform somersaults.
Set a variety of low objects on the floor and invite children to jump over them with their feet together.
Let children jump on a small trampoline. Use a timer to avoid conflicts or have each child jump 10, 20, or 30 times, depending on their age.
If the weather outside is nice, organize outdoor gymnastics. The fresh air will add to the benefits of this physical activity.
Show children how to hula hoop. You can use a timer. The child who can keep the hula hoop in motion the longest will be your hula hoop champion.
Fun obstacle course
Use a balance beam, a tunnel, and other material you have on hand to create a fun obstacle course for your group. You can ask them to sing a song or carry an object as they complete the course. They may also work as a team or individually.
MUSICAL AND RHYTHMIC ACTIVITIES
Purchase several rhythmic ribbons (or make your own using wooden sticks and lightweight fabric). Show children how they can manipulate the sticks to spin the ribbons. Variation: Use different types of fabric to create unique rhythmic ribbons. Children will love exploring different textures.
Gymnastics obstacle course
Use cones to create a special obstacle course within your daycare. Have children complete the course to the sound of music. Encourage them to follow the beat.
ACTIVITIES INVOLVING PARENTS
Ask parents to stay for 5-10 minutes in the morning or at the end of the day to take part in a simple gymnastics challenge.
Invite active parents to organize a brief gymnastics-related activity for your group. Older brothers and sisters may also enjoy leading an exercise session.
(Open counting cards-Gymnastics) Print and laminate. Prepare a series of wooden clothespins on which you can paint or draw numbers 1 to 9. Children count the items on each card and place the corresponding clothespin on the correct number.
Roll and color-Gymnastics
(Open roll and color-Gymnastics) Print for each child. This game can be enjoyed individually or as a group. Children take turns rolling a die, counting the dots, and coloring the corresponding part.
Encourage children to balance a book or other object on their head as they walk around the daycare.
(Open educ-math-Gymnastics) Print and laminate for durable, eco-friendly use. Children must count the items in each rectangle and circle the correct number.
Educ-same and different-Gymnastics
(Open educ-same and different-Gymnastics) Print and laminate for durable, eco-friendly use. Children must circle the illustration that is different in each row.
MORAL AND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
With a partner, children must create a short gymnastics routine to the sound of music.
My gymnastics costume
Provide activewear in different sizes and colors and invite children to create their own costume.
Set a large blanket on the floor. Ask children to lie on their back and relax. Invite them to think about activities they would like to do with their family or friends.
Balance is very important in gymnastics. Test children's balance with simple activities:
- Have them stand on their right leg and then on their left leg.
- Have them walk on a balance beam.
- Have them set a book on their head and walk around the daycare.
Learning to exhale
Give each child a glass of water and a drinking straw. Encourage children to breathe out, blowing bubbles in the water.
(Open creative coloring-Gymnastics) Print for each child. Have children complete the drawing as they see fit.
(Open coloring pages theme-Gymnastics) Print for each child.
DIFFERENT WAYS TO USE THE COLORING PAGES
Identical coloring pages-Gymnastics
Print the same coloring page for each child and an additional copy for your model. Color only certain parts of your picture. Present the model to your group and ask them to color their picture to make it look exactly like yours.
Print and laminate several coloring pages and arrange them in a binder with a few dry-erase markers. Leave everything on a table for children to explore.
Play musical drawing with your group. Give each child a coloring page. Have children sit around a table. When the music starts, they must pass the coloring pages around the table. Every time the music stops, they must color the picture in front of them until the music starts again.
Give each child a picture to color. When they are done, cut each picture into pieces to create unique puzzles.
SONGS & RHYMES
(Open songs & rhymes-Gymnastics)
By: Patricia Morrison Sung to: Hot cross buns
The beam, the floor
Keep your balance
You'll run and jump, twist and turn
You'll have so much fun
The bars, the horse
So much to learn
The Educatall team
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