14 Introduction hesitate to adapt the lesson plans, perhaps abbreviating activities or changing
their order, if you feel it is better for your group. If certain activities seem too
advanced, feel free to skip them and return to them later; they are offered here
simply as possibilities.
You may decide, for instance, that you wish to explore one activity and all
of its extensions in a series of movement sessions before moving on to the next
activity on the page. Or you may choose to ignore the extensions until you have
run through all twenty lesson plans, at which time you can return to Lesson 1
and begin again with the first suggested extension under each activity.
Another option is to add a specific warm-up exercise—a favorite finger-
play or song—perhaps, to the beginning of each lesson. Performing the same
warm-up all the time can serve to alert your children to the fact that it is
movement time. And you can finish with a cooldown of your choice too. For
instance, pretending to melt puts closure on the day’s lesson by offering chil-
dren a chance to relax and to lower themselves to the floor, where they can
await information about what comes next.
No matter how you choose to approach the lesson plans and activities, it
is vital that you implement lots of repetition. As an early childhood educator,
you recognize how important repetition is to young children. Just because a
movement activity appears only once in these lesson plans doesn’t mean it is
intended to be experienced only once! You should repeat activities and even
whole lessons as often as necessary to ensure success.
Will you do movement only as part of circle time, or will you schedule
longer movement sessions? Will you schedule sessions weekly, daily, or some-
thing in between? The following section of the introduction attempts to help
you answer some of those questions and provides information you will need to
make the best possible use of this program.
Scheduling Movement Experiences
As mentioned earlier, each of the lesson plans in this program consists of four
activities and is intended to take approximately forty-five minutes to complete.
Whether that holds true for you depends largely upon your particular situation.
If you have a very small group of children, for instance, or if you have had to