Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Yoga in the Classroom

I get a lot of my creative classroom ideas during my morning workout session, but this one is by far the most literal. While in the flat-back pose, I was thinking about how one of my yoga teachers described this pose by telling us to breath deeply but remain static. That spark of memory led to this ELA concept:

After that initial idea, I was able to come up with 12 more poses that are inspired by literature concepts. You can find all of these poses here: Literary Yoga 

How I use these poses in class: 

1. Getting my students up and moving when the "zombie stares" set in. Before coming up with this lesson, I would just have students "stand up and stretch" when we needed to wake up during a particularly long bit of reading. However, that always ended up being a bit awkward because it seemed like the only stretch I could ever think of was the same ol' hands over head one. Now, I have an array of  poses to use, and they actually have meaning to them. For example, after reading a lengthy passage, I will say "Stand up and get into your eagle pose, and let's figure out what point-of-view this passage is in. Is it told from an eagle's point of view or a different kind of point-of-view?"

2. An impromptu story or novel review. Often I "forget" to make reviews before tests. Sometimes when I "forget," I will search Kahoot and find a premade game on there. Other times, I will be even more lazy  resourceful and have students review by going through the yoga poses and applying them to our review piece. I have done this three differnt ways. One way is as a whole class activity where I play the PowerPoint with the yoga slides while we answer as a class. The second way is by using the center posters and having students go in groups around the room doing the pose and answering the questions with their partners. The third way is by using my task card basket and having groups pull out a card, do the pose, then answer the question to get points for their team.

3. Exit tickets otherwise known as "Oh SH*T" we just finished this lesson there are 10 minutes left in class.  I make multiple copies the task cards included in this lesson and put them in a basket. I then let students select a pose from the basket and do the task. For their exit ticket, they must either teach another student this pose and task, or they must write down their answer on a sticky note before leaving.

Most of the time I use these activities to wake my high school students up and get the energy flowing, but if I were teaching middle school again, I would use this to help focus students. If you use it for focus, be sure to create a calming presence in your room before beginning. Turn the lights down low and put on a yoga station. My favorites are Pandora'sYoga Workout Radio and Harry Potter Sound Track also on Pandora. 

Check out the hashtags #yogaintheclassroom and  #yogakids to find more yoga inspiration on Instagram! My favorite yoga  instas to follow are: 

This is a fellow English teacher who does classroom reflection via yoga poses in her classroom, and she is SUCH an inspiration not only through her poses, but also through her words. 

This yoga educator does so much with the use of yoga to promote self-esteem in students. She is amazing. 

Lastly, this teacher is someone who knows how to have FUN with yoga. I love her quirkiness! 

Be sure to follow me for more creative ideas! 

Instagram: Bsbooklove
Pinterest: Ashley Million Bible 
Twitter: Bsbooklove
Facebook: Bsbooklove 
Periscope @Bsbooklove