Student Choice -Moving and Dancing with Drum Fit

Forest Park Elementary School Physical Activity SD068 School Level Elementary Island Health Authority Public

Students are in Grade 1 and have a lot of energy to use up daily.  Although we participate in Daily Physical Activity (in a variety of ways inside and outside of our classroom) students are struggling with engaging in an activity that is fun, increases participation in DPA, and results in students getting out there energy and working up a sweat/raising heartbeat/being out of breath.

As a class we begin to search around and look for an activity that students thought looked fun and wanted to engage in as a class.  We came across drum fit and began to wonder if participating in an activity we were engaged and excited about would help them to increase their participation and effort in DPA.  (With the added goal of wanting to transition into setting goals in DPA to increase student effort).

After materials were ordered and arrived, and the teacher/student teacher learned all they could about how to teach/lead Drum Fit, the class begin to participate in Drum Fit activities 3 to 5 days a week.  Students began by learning the basic Drum Fit moves, then progressed into learning routines, and lastly began to try and create their own routines that followed along with the music.

Key areas of health and learning we focused on: As a class we focused on finding DPA activities we loved (and wanted to engage in as a class) to help improve students attitudes towards DPA and increase their participation in DPA, and we focused on increasing our effort when participating in DPA through setting personal goals (bigger movements, faster movements, participating the whole time, etc.).

The tools / resources we used: equipment (exercise balls, rhythm sticks, sound system, music), we utilized SMART Goal setting process (specific, measured, attainable, relevant, timely) to set individual goals, measured effort during participation using a 3 point scale (1 – not sweating / can easily breath, 2 – starting to sweat / breathing a little faster / can still talk, 3 – really sweating / breathing fast / hard to talk) students would hold up 1, 2, or 3 fingers to show how hard they were working (self-reflection / check-in piece).  Lastly used Plicker app to pre / post assess students’ participation, effort, and attitude towards Daily Physical Activity.

Students were active participants in this inquiry.  Although students were guided through the inquiry process (as this was their first inquiry) it was students’ choice as to what activity (as a class) they wanted to engage in.  It was also students’ choice (individually) to set their own goal to help increase their effort in DPA.  At the end of this project students actively reflected and discussed what they learned during this process and found out … (look below at the outcomes to find out what they discovered).

Our class was very lucky to have a great student teacher who had completed Drum Fit training to teach/lead students in Drum Fit (which we did not know when we chose this activity J).

I believe this activity contributed to class connectedness.  Students learned to work alongside classmates and even the teachers in the room as we all had to organize and share equipment and ultimately participate actively together in partners.  I would not say school connectedness as we did not venture outside the classroom with this activity.