You can give standards a brain break with these smart cookies. Purposeful practice for automaticity (repetition) is a key to skill mastery, so these playful exercises will have children practicing skills as they move and have fun.
Children stand and put their hands in the air as they say a letter. They put their hands on their shoulders and make the letter sound. As they touch their toes they say a word that starts with that sound.
A (Hands up in the air and say “A.”)
/a/ (Hands on shoulders and make the short /a/ sound.)
____ (Say a word that starts with “A” as you touch your toes.)
Adaptations: Say words that are nouns, verbs, or other parts of speech as you touch your toes.
*Children can “Phonercise” with Dr. Jean on this video:
Macarena Count to 100
Directions: Children stand and do the “Macarena” as they count.
1 (Right arm out palm down.)
2 (Left arm out palm down.)
3 (Right palm up.)
4 (Left palm up.)
5 (Right hand on left shoulder.)
6 (Left hand on right shoulder.)
7 (Right hand behind head.)
8 (Left hand behind head.)
9 (Right hand on left hip.)
10 (Left hand on right hip.)
(Clap two times.)
That is one ten. (Hold up one finger.)
*Skip count using the Macarena. Counting by 2’s, 5’s, 10’s, etc. will help children with multiplication.
*Do the “Macarena” with Dr. Jean on this video:
Have children stand and pretend to dribble a basketball. Spell out words as you dribble, and then shoot the ball in the hoop as you say the word. For example:
T (bounce), H (bounce), E (bounce) ~ “the” (throw the ball in the hoop)
Adaptations: Take a batter’s position. Pretend to take a swing as you say the letters; then hit a home run as you say the word. For example:
R (swing), E (swing), A (swing), D (swing) ~ “read” (swing around)
*Let children suggest other sports where they could practice spelling words. For example, swimming, soccer, tennis, fishing…it’s endless!
Top to Bottom Math Facts
Children stand and put their hands in the air as the teacher says a number. When they touch their heads the teacher says “plus” or “minus.” As they touch their waist the teacher says a second number. When the touch their knees everyone says “equals.” And when they touch their toes they say the answer to the math fact.
Adaptations: Tell number stories where children touch and tell the answer.
*Let children take turns calling out math facts.
How about some sample smart cookies?