Stop and Go and Jump
Context for this Strategy
Stop and Go and Jump is a physical and mental warm-up that involves listening and body awareness. It begins with simple prompts that students respond to as they move through an open space. Later, when the teacher announces the meanings of prompts are switched, students must remember the new meaning for each prompt and the corresponding action.
Define the playing area and invite students to walk silently around the space. Encourage students to be aware of their pathways and change walking patterns often, while remaining aware of the rest of the group. Introduce the prompt “stop”: students freeze their bodies in place. Then, introduces “go”: students continue walking. Rehearse the prompts until they are understood. Next, introduce “jump”: students make a small jump in place, as bodies are able. The final prompt is “name”: students state their name out loud once. Once all the vocabulary and responses are clear play the game by alternating through different prompts. Next explain that prompts will begin to swap beginning with swapping “stop” and “go” with each other, so that when students hear “stop,” they start walking and when they hear “go” they freeze. Switch the actions of “jump” with “name.” If desired add a third set of actions “arms”: lifting arms up and “knees”: hands on knees, into the game.
- What different skills did you have to use to successfully participate in the activity?
- What was challenging about this activity? What was easy? Why?
- What skills did you use in this activity that you want to use in our work today?
- Try not to walk in a circle. Make sure your feet are covering the entire space.
- Listen carefully so you can process the command quickly before responding.
- Remain aware of others in the space.
- Invite students to be the caller who chooses the prompts for the group.
- Work together to create new prompts with academic vocabulary and gestures to add to the prompt vocabulary.
- MATH: Have students create gestures for parallel lines and perpendicular lines, or acute and obtuse angles.
- SCIENCE: Have students create gestures for landforms like mountain, butte, or island. In this version the teacher does not swap gestures and names.