Happy Fall y’all! Paper pumpkins, calico corn, and furry woodland creatures may be adorning your classroom this time of year. They may even be incorporated into your lessons to add a little fun. So, why not incorporate autumn into your S.M.A.R.T. program?
By now, your students have been practicing S.M.A.R.T. activities for several weeks. You know what happens when students do the same things over and over…they can get bored. With a little creative thinking and some suggestions from your program guides, you can make S.M.A.R.T. activities new, novel, and stimulating to the brain again!
When adding a thematic twist to your S.M.A.R.T. routine think in terms of function, what the students can use, not fluff or simply decoration. On the Balance Beam you can use mini pumpkins, gourds, or calico corn to step over while maintaining balance in a heel-to-toe walk. The Pencil Roll can become ‘rolling in the leaves’!
Check out the Time Saving Tips section of this month’s newsletter for some visual development activity downloads and follow us on Facebook to share your fall S.M.A.R.T. ideas.
S.M.A.R.T. at Home
Looking for some creative ways to help your child with homework? We have some fun and effective ways using one of our S.M.A.R.T. Principles: Movement Anchors Learning!
We know you’re not alone if you find that, by the time they get home from school, your child is tired of sitting. So tackling a stack of homework at the table can be a real struggle. But did you know that thinking and learning aren’t just in our head? The body plays an integral part in our intellectual processes. Developmentally, movement plays a major role. Movement influences the ability to concentrate in a classroom and to learn to read and write. Movement can also be used as a way to recharge the brain!
How can you as parents successfully pair learning with movement? No need to feel stumped because we’re here to help! So whether homework is a battle or not, we have some fun ideas for you that involve movement!
Sports and Spelling: Incorporating your child’s favorite sport with a homework task can help keep them engaged, have fun, and learn faster! If basketball is your sport, you can combine dribbling with spelling. Here’s how:
Jump Rope: Students can pair a fun activity like jumping rope with homework. Use math fact flash cards and show the cards to our child while jumping. Have your child look at the cards and jump while saying the math fact out loud, one item per jump. (2 x 5 = 10 is 5 jumps.)
Repeat 5-10 times. Work on 3-5 facts per day. And remember, it’s always a good idea to include math facts they already know for review.
NOTE: Jumping rope is an incredibly high level motor skill. (Not to mention it takes quite a bit of energy and endurance.) If your child hasn’t gained this skill yet you can use the jump rope in other ways!
These Movement Anchors Learning ideas can be used with any number of things children need to learn: colors, shapes, numbers, letters, words, spelling, math, etc.
Time Saving Tips
Loop de Loos, Overs and Unders, and Tactile Trackers oh my!
November is the month to give them a try!
To develop and enhance eye movements and eye-hand coordination skills students need vision activities. Below are several fall themed activities for you to download, print, and practice.
That's One S.M.A.R.T. Teacher!
How often do you catch yourself asking your students “Did you trace three times?” Tactile Trackers or Wagon Wheels, two S.M.A.R.T. core vision activities, require that a student covers their left eye and traces a line, covers their right eye and traces a line, and finally traces with both eyes open.