with the elements will help children reach new cognitive
Any kindergarten teacher knows that almost all five year
olds love to move, act, explore with their total identities and
bodies. When creative
movement is incorporated into their classroom diet, it is the
cement that helps to solidify the knowledge base of the individual
learner. My goal is to strengthen and enhance the students’
ability to learn by teaching the elements of dance (FOR) – body,
shape, force and time through the lessons of Mary Joyce.
By letting children learn to express themselves using body,
mind, and movement, I am going to open new pathways to help in
their ability to express themselves and learn through their
The learner will be able to:
Cognitive – Short
Term – Re-create a modeled four beat pattern. Follow in a
marching pattern with a teacher leader. Find a spot (using a
stuffed animal model) to work safely building shapes. Go near and
far from a set point, and then sit down without touching others
around them. Explore the shapes their body is able to made in
space and the levels of operation during shape making exercises.
Long Term - Learn the role of body, shape, force and time
as the basic elements of creative movement.
Affective – Short
Term – The student will be able to create a shape with her body
that she has never made before (beginning to explore her ability
to move and create). Long Term - Discover new insights to one’s
own body movement and learning style.
Social – Short
Term – Find a personal spot to create shapes without touching
others in the classroom. Long Term - Work with a variety of
groupings to explore the elements of dance.
Competencies – Short Term – Know their bodies are able to make
many different shapes. Draw a picture of an interesting shape.
Long-term - Explore the basic elements of dance body,
shape, force and time utilizing Mary Joyce’s text.
While reading First Steps in Teaching Creative
Dance to Children I realized that to get the children (and
myself) comfortable with creative movement, I needed to teach the
elements. As the author states, “This freedom can be used
successfully and with self-assurance, however, only after
preliminary exploration and learning of the elements of dance
(Joyce, 1994, p.7).” After
reading the text, I realized that the lessons in the book serve as
the underlying building blocks for me as well as my students.
I plan to teach basic elements using the Joyce text three
times a week for approximately 30-45 minutes a day.
My kindergarten classroom is a large area that has only
easily movable tables. I
will be teaching the all day kindergarten program during the next
academic year. Due to the length of the day, I will have the
luxury of time and freedom to explore the elements of movement
using the lessons provided in our text.
kindergarten children that I will be working with in the fall will
help me to know how much time I need to spend on developing
expectations for classroom instruction during movement. This
lesson might be spread over two days if the children are
interesting in doing more of the activities to build appropriate
Children will clap
a simple four beat pattern and then the children will repeat it
with their hands, feet, or a partner while clapping (p. 50).
Establishing Boundaries – Parade
Having the children
march behind me in line, we will explore the areas of the room
that are on/off limits during the movement activities (p. 50).
How to Stop
Finding the perfect
spot – Using the stuffed animals in the classroom home center, I
will show the children how to find a spot away from other children
during the upcoming shape activity. Half of the children will move
to one of the animal markers and then the other half of the
children will do the same thing.
I will have a “non-example” stuffed animal to show
children how the “perfect spot” away from other works.
I will show using a volunteer from the classroom and model
the idea for the students (p. 52).
Near and Far
Kindergarten age children are very honest in their opinions
about the activities during their busy school day. They aren’t
able to write or “take a test” about the areas of study but
teacher observation of outcomes and classroom participation are
always good indicators of whether goals and objectives are being
met. I will assess
how students are enjoying and meeting lesson goals and objectives
in several ways.
kindergartners asking to do the movement and dance lessons?
The past year children begged to do the movement
activities that were a part of our day.
the kindergartners to partners using dance related language
covered in the Joyce lessons?
interview – Are students able to make a high level shape and
hold it? Are they able to use the concept words of high level,
low level, straight to make a shape?
– Taken during the lesson to show the different shapes being
made by the students. After
the pictures have been developed are the students able to talk
about their shape using the language of the lesson?
Observation of the teacher during the lesson – What children
are able to follow the drum beats, create using the directions
and suggestions given
work – Recreating an interesting shape using a picture,
dictation may be taken by the teacher to show the thoughts of
the lesson to show and reflect on the shapes made by students
and to explore the long term goals and objects