Movement activities are an engaging and fun way to help students learn science. Increase participation, motivation and knowledge retention using these simple activities with your students. They can be edited to fit into your curriculum or be adapted to other scientific topics with a little creativity.
States of Matter
Direct students to create motions for different kinetic energies to represent the solid, liquid, gas and plasma states of matter. Students should rotate in place to mimic solid matter, sway side to side to represent liquids, swiftly walk past one another to represent gases and run around each other to represent plasma. For large groups of students, use a whistle prompt to change states. For more experienced students, ask them to change states via condensation, evaporation and transpiration.
Bring students outside to act out the movements of tectonic plate boundaries. Teach them this poem:
Convection moves the Earth,
The lithosphere is shaky turf.
The boundaries move inside,
Convergent boundaries collide,
Divergent boundaries divide,
And transform boundaries slide by side.
Have student copy and memorize the poem. They will recite the poem while moving. When "convection moves the Earth," students should move their arms in circles. When "the lithosphere is shaky turf" and "boundaries move inside," students should pretend to be on unstable ground. When "convergent boundaries collide," students move close together. When "divergent boundaries divide," they move apart. When "transform boundaries slide by side," students should walk past one another.
Transformations of Energy Scavenger Hunt
Students move around the school campus or home to identify everyday objects' transfers of energy, including their own bodies. First help students to recognize the transfers between kinetic, potential, chemical, mechanical, thermal, sound and light energies. Then send them on a timed scavenger hunt to list and describe as many transfers of energy as they can throughout school campus. The group or individual with the most transfers wins.
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