We ask our students to read and write from left to right everyday at school. This task, that adults may see as simple, can be a daunting one for kids who have trouble crossing the midline of their body. In order for our students to be successful academically, we need to make sure they have reached all of their developmental milestones, like the ability to cross the midline and have both sides of your brain working efficiently together. Luckily there are many exercises involving cross body movements that can help strengthen the bodies & brains of our little readers and writers.
Here are 4 ways cross body movements can help:
When you move your arms or legs across to the other side of the body, both sides of your brain are activated, making higher learning concepts such as reading, comprehension, writing, and math easier to take place.
The development of the brain influences learning readiness and the ability to do things like listen, follow directions, and retain information. Cross body movements help activate and further develop the brain, helping kids become better listeners and more ready to learn.
When kids move and engage their bodies while learning, it can change the way the brain works and can accelerate their learning process. Movement and memory are also linked, so when kids can connect actions with concepts, learning is increased!
Cross Body movements make for an active and productive transition in the classroom. Have your kids tap their opposite knee or shoulder on the way to their table spot, and their brains & bodies are ready to learn!
A few of my favorite GoNoodle videos that feature cross-body movements:
- Montana James and the Palace of Peril, exclusive to GoNoodle Plus
- Eagle Pretzel with Maximo
- Wake Up, Overdrive, and Pump it Up from Fresh Start Fitness
For more videos, check out the “Cross Lateral Skills” Catergory.
Kaylee Peterson is a Kindergarten STEM teacher in Rochester, MN, and proud mom to two adorable 3-legged rescue dogs. Keep up with Kaylee on Twitter @mrskayleep.