strut your stuff and rhythmic challenges
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Strut Your Stuff and Rhythmic Challenges. Presented by Liz Butts, M.S., M.Ed. Instructor at the University of West Georgia. Planning your strut. Pick your date and venue. Involve students with program planning.

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strut your stuff and rhythmic challenges

Strut Your Stuff and Rhythmic Challenges

Presented by Liz Butts, M.S., M.Ed.

Instructor at the University of West Georgia

planning your strut
Planning your strut . . .
  • Pick your date and venue.
  • Involve students with program planning.
  • Have a theme and music theme using music between demonstrations avoiding awkward silence.
  • Integrate across the curriculum for theme approach.
  • Demonstrate what you DO – your stuff.

Keep notes for potential student performers.

  • Keep performers together by class to avoid extra rehearsal time.
  • Allow for student creativity.
  • Forget choreography and synchronization.
  • Keep demonstrations brief and rotate groups.
  • The three-ring circus approach allows for different demonstrations.
  • Demonstrate developmental progression of skills using younger and older students.
  • Involve parent participants if possible.
field day struts
Field Day Struts . . .
  • Think outside of the typical box
  • Example: Blast from the Past field day
  • Parents and grandparents play old fashioned games
  • Games involved horseshoes, washers, hopscotch, yo-yoing, Chinese jump rope, jacks, marbles, croquette, sack races, etc.
rhythmic challenges you don t have to dance
Rhythmic Challenges . . . You don’t have to dance!
  • Listen for appropriate music. Absolutely critical that you select age appropriate music with lyrics that do NOT contradict the positive messages of health and well-being!
  • Select music that has a steady 4/8 count beat.
  • Forget the idea that everyone has to be doing the same thing! Choreographed routines are not essential!
  • (Traditional dance from the Philippines using bamboo poles)
  • Tinikling teaches communication, cooperation and requires synchronized rhythm!
  • Equipment: PVC pipes – 1” to 1.5” in diameter & 7-8’ in length and 2.5-3’ 2X4 boards (2 pipes & 2 boards per set)
  • Minimum number of students: 3 (2 strikers & 1 jumper)
tinikling con t
Tinikling, con’t.
  • Rhythmic count: basic 4 count works best with steady 8 beat music (Cues: down – down – in – in) (Traditional beat is a 3 count beat with cues: down – down – in)
  • Basic jumps: double straddle jump (Cues: in – in – out – out) or side step hops (With right side to poles hop in with right foot first, hop in with left, hop out with right and hop in place, hop back in with left, hop in with right, hop out with left and hop in place and repeat) (Cues: in- in – out – hop)
tinikling teaching tips
Tinikling Teaching Tips:
  • Before allowing students to use the pole sets, have students practice the beat with their hands by striking knees twice and clapping twice with a steady pattern to music.
  • Have students practice jumping footwork without the poles. Use gym lines, jump ropes and stationary poles initially.
  • Teach students to keep their thumbs parallel with the pipes to prevent thumb “smashing”!
  • Strikers should have the 2x4 boards about 6” forward of the pipe ends to allow room for their hands.
  • Strikers should only slightly raise the poles when striking. (Students tend to raise them too high.)

This rhythmic activity teaches cooperation as students learn to strike together with the beat and attempt to help not hinder their jumping classmates.

  • Rotate striking and jumping frequently to avoid fatigue and keep students actively moving.
  • This is an excellent station activity.
  • After students master the basic jumps, allow them opportunities to explore new ways of moving in and out of the poles. They can even turn cartwheels in and out of the poles.
  • Add partner tricks and manipulatives of all kinds with balls, bean bags, hoola hoops, lummi sticks, streamers, etc. Students will amaze you with their creativity!
lummi sticks
  • Equipment: dowel sticks – 2 per student
  • Teaching Tips and Challenges:
  • Using steady 8 count music, have students begin by exploring/creating basic patterns with a partner while sitting. Encourage them to think of new positions and new ways to keep the beat using their lummi sticks.
  • After students establish sitting skills, have them stand and add new moves while standing stationary.
  • The last challenge is to have students move with a partner or within small groups keeping the rhythmic pattern. This activity adds an extra skill level when combined with tinikling and long jump ropes.
streamer rhythms
  • Equipment: ½” to ¾” dowel sticks cut into 12” lengths; small eye hooks inserted into one end of each dowel; fishing swivels connected to the eye hooks; 3-4’ lengths of bright surveyor tape tied to the fishing swivels
  • Activities: Lower elementary students especially benefit from this type of rhythmic activity.
  • Using steady beat 8 count music; have students move within their own personal space performing various non-locomotor and locomotor skills.
  • Movement skills can be exaggerated and students are motivated to move more with the streamers than without them.
  • Depending upon the number of streamers, it is excellent for large or small groups or stations if streamers are limited. Streamers provide color for programs and demonstrations.
sport movement choreographed routines
  • Teaching/Choreographing Tips:
  • Music selection and patterning – Select appropriate music with steady 8 count beat (instrumental only is really best). Using paper and pencil, chart the music pattern with one strike for each 8 count beat. Identify how many 8 count strikes you have in the introduction, the repeated chorus or main refrain, and the verses by making separate rows for the 8 count beats. You should end up with a chart of the music pattern.
sport movement choreographing
Sport movement choreographing
  • Identify desired sport movement skills that can be performed in 4 or 8 count steps (Example: basketball layup shot – left, right, left, up for 4 counts)
  • Students can enjoy the challenge of coming up with the sport skill moves and trying to fit them into the pattern so that the introduction involves a certain set of moves, the chorus involves repeating a different series of moves and the verses another series of moves.
  • Moves can involve jumping, sliding, crossovers, simulated throwing, passing, shooting and movements in various directions at different levels. This type of sport rhythmic training has been successful with upper elementary, middle and high school students and even football teams.