I am so excited to be a GoNoodle Ambassador and be a member of the Blog Squad! I first found out about it from a friend, Casey Lynchey, who raved about how much her year 4/5 pupils were enjoying it. So, I had to try it out for myself. I couldn’t believe it! She was right…this was one of the most amazing sites I had stumbled upon in a while. Here’s how I use it with my Year 5 pupils.
GoNoodle is at the top of my list because kids love it. I know a site, game, app, program, curriculum, project, or activity really becomes a success when the kids buy in and enjoy it. It is changing the way we transition from activities and how my kids focus and participate during lessons. All I have to do is select the type of brain break we need and then start that particular video. The video demonstrates exactly what the kids are expected to do. They instantly follow along.
Focus in lessons:
Living in Britain, we get quite a bit of rain and this is especially true for North West England! The children in my class are quite active and on a wet day they tend to get a bit of ‘cabin fever’ but this is soon remedied with a nice 5 minute GoNoodle video. We used several of the energize brain breaks before we started a lesson that I knew would require a period of sitting. We followed it up with a calm brain break. GoNoodle even has special 10+ minute videos for a full wet break-time, the great thing about these videos is that many of them are like a mixtape of a few different types of videos.
From the government’s changes to the curriculum we have high expectations of our children and the output of work we expect them to produce. So, why not have a 2 minute brain break to encourage further work. Also, this could be a nice, happy start the morning.
The central theme of mindfulness is to keep your mind on the present. This produces a healthy mindset, rather than worrying about past and future challenges or worries. A GoNoodle activity will address this in some way but there are specialist videos for this too
Another way I use GoNoodle is great way to get your class focused, seated where you want them in a nice positive way. I have used this during transitions to different subject places or changing from teaching one subject to another. The energize brain breaks are great! Depending on the time you have, you can select the brain break that is “just right.” There are also have fantastic breaks that include skills such as counting by fives.
There are some new features on GoNoodle Plus which provides some features that may help teachers in lessons. Mega Maths Marathon is an enjoyable way to practise maths in and out of class, players run on the spot and answer Year group specific maths questions.; questions can be customised to areas of maths. I am excited to go back in September and see how it enriches my class’ attitude to maths.
Bodyspell is another new feature where students make their bodies into the shape of each letter in a word they are spelling. You can choose one of 45 ready-made word lists already in the game, or upload your own words. In England, each class has a list of 100 “Core Words” that they should know how to read and spell by the each key stage.
As a positive reward
This could be a positive way to promote behaviour in your class, to enjoy exercise and to treat it as a reward! Without getting into an academic debate, the basics are simple. The more you exercise, the more the blood flows throughout your body. As more blood is pumped to your brain, more oxygen is delivered.
There is a researcher who studies the brain, John Medina, author of Brain Rules. If you haven’t seen his three-minute video on the power of an active person in relation to brain function I highly recommend you take the time to research him, he discusses the impact of physical activity not only on our health but also on our learning.
I hope your class enjoys GoNoodle as much as mine does! My class have even created their own accounts, which can be a fun way for them to keep motivated with physical activity and mindful behaviours over the weekends, out of school and holidays.
Let me know how you get on by commenting below!