I think we all know how important exercise is for kids (ok and adults). So what better way to encourage our kids to exercise than by also teaching them the letter E!
- Materials for an obstacle course
- E Tracing Page
- Lots of space!
- 4 Construction paper “E”s
- Cheap blank water bottles
- Paint pens
Hook: Have a little obstacle course set up for your child. You could just do this inside with some pillows and furniture, or you could go all out and set up a nice big outside. Throughout the obstacle course place some letter “E”s. Have your child go through the obstacle course gathering all the letters as fast as they can.
Step 1: Ask your child how they feel (out of breath, tired, happy, sweaty). Explain what exercise is and that it starts with the letter E. Have your child place the letters they gathered in four different parts of the house (you can pick these out ahead of time). Tape them somewhere prominently that they will easily see.
Step 2: Sit down with your child and practice writing the letter E. This will give them some cool off time before starting more exercises.
Step 3: Explain to your child that one of the purposes of exercise is to get your heart beating hard. If you have a stethoscope on hand you can have them listen to their own heart. Otherwise have them place their hand on their chest or feel their pulse on their neck or wrist. Have them notice that since they aren’t running around and are resting their heart is beating slower.
Step 4: Have them find one of the letter E’s they put in the house. At this letter teach them how to do jumping jacks. Have them do a couple. Move to the next letter. Teach them how to run in place. Have them master this skill. At the next letter teach them push ups. They may not be able to do real ones but you can teach them with their knees on the ground. Don’t be harsh, though! This is supposed to be fun! At the last letter teach them crunches.
Step 5: After they have mastered (in a loose meaning of the word) the 4 exercises go back to the first E. When you say go both of you (you can exercise too!!) do 10 jumping jacks. Run as fast as you can to the next letter and do 10 seconds of running. Continue to the last two letters doing 10 of each. You can make it a little race of who can do their exercises first.
Step 6: When you are done have your child listen or feel their heartbeat again. Have them notice how much faster their heart is racing now. Explain to your child that you don’t just have to do those exercises to get your heart racing. Have them come up with some other activities that can be exercise (trampoline, swimming, wrestling, etc.).
Step 7: Cool down by tracing the letter E again.
Step 8: Explain that drinking water is very important when you exercise (make sure you’ve been drinking water!). Let your child decorate a blank water bottle with paint pens or permanent markers that can be their water bottle for when they are exercising.
We seem to have a plethora of water bottles at our house so we just used an extra instead of buying a new one.
FIELD TRIP IDEA: Take them to a gym. Let them see the different machines people use to exercise. You can also take them to a park.
TREAT: Some sort of energy food, like healthy granola bars
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