The Effect Of Movement On Student Learning

2101 words - 8 pages

Movement is one of the most highly debated topics among teachers today, as every individual has his/her own opinions in their teaching philosophy. Teachers must get around barriers caused by the high priorities of standardized testing and low effort to include movement in their classroom; therefore, it puts too much stress on the general education teachers. There are insufficient amounts of space to complete activities requiring movement when in a classroom; therefore, the teachers are incapable of safely navigating students around the room. Some students will refuse to participate in different physical activities, causing frustration when teachers are trying to plan full class activities, and this takes away from academic instruction. It is often that educators exclude these physical activities from the classroom due to stress that is put on the schools to perform higher academically; however, studies show exercise may be a large factor in the student’s performance. There are so many ways to incorporate movement into the lessons that increase the students’ academic achievements while motivating them. As space is limited in the classroom, during the warmer months, teachers can use the outdoors as an engaging experience to refresh the students’ minds and prepare them for new lessons. Physical activities can also be used to reinforce information that was previously taught during lessons to increase the student’s knowledge of the topic. Opinions vary from one person to another, but there is only one way to find the effects that exercise has on the student’s abilities. Physical activity should be incorporated into the classroom because it promotes cognition and academic achievement, improves student behavior and attitude, and refocuses the students.
Cognition, the mental process of knowing, is greatly affected by movement due to the brain activity involved. A study showing the improvement in cognition took place in a rural area of Hartford, South Dakota, during 2004-2005. Those involved were nineteen second grade students, all from middle socio-economic status families. For the experiment there were two separate classrooms; one was controlled, and the other experimented in movement curriculum such as Brain Gym activities. Evaluations of beginning work was done “to determine students’ progress, evaluate, plan instruction, and make changes.” They were “also used to communicate with the parents about their child’s progress” (Spielmann, 2004, p.32). All parents were informed that the Brain Gym activities would not affect the students’ grades. The teacher used the school’s guidelines as well as the second grade curriculum when integrating the Brain Gym. During the process of this study students were encouraged to participate in the activities every morning. The teacher explained to the students how to do the morning activities, and then they would complete them and follow the exercise with a journal writing session in...

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