Substitute Creature

Check out the book by Chris Gall

The troublemaking students of Ms. Jenkins’ class arrive at school one day to discover a substitute creacher has come to put a stop to their monkey business! He regales them with mind-boggling stories about his former students who didn’t follow the rules: Keith the glue-eater, Zach the daydreamer, and Hank the prankster, to name a few. But even this multi-tentacled, yellow-spotted, one-eyed monster’s cautionary tales about the consequences of mischief-making can’t seem to change the students’ wicked ways until he reveals the spookiest and most surprising story of all: his own.

The teachers at Edison Elementary School in Ashland, Ohio go all in for Halloween! This story provided a wonderful tie-in for MOVEMENT MOMENTS. The best dance element was SHAPE – SIZES!

1PR Explore and experiment with locomotor and non-locomotor
movements using changes in body shape, time, space and movement
quality to construct meaning.

Students had previously NOT shared what their Halloween costume was going to be. After our warm-up, we allowed the kids to think about the movements their Halloween character would make. They needed to have three movements and their demonstration needed to be without words or sound effects.

After the students shared their three movements in sequence the class would guess the character. Then, two or three students would offer ideas for revising the movements for additional clarity.

By doing so the students learned to construct, revise, edit their choreography. They also learned so many new movements. This short game supports the tenets of social-emotional learning too (self-awareness, self-management, responsible decision making, social awareness, and relationship skills).

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