Running Through the Forest
To develop students’ imaginations, creative thinking and listening to directions.
Before You Start
Skills Practiced: Jogging, jumping, running, ducking and following instructions
- Have students stand on their home bases
How to Play
- Tell all of the students to imagine that they are not on the yard, but that they are in a forest.
- Explain that the class is going to be explorers going on a walk through the forest using their imaginations.
- Have all the students walk in place while you describe the trip the class is taking through the woods. Occasionally have the students duck under “branches” and jump over fallen “trees.”
- Slowly begin to speed up the pace the children are walking.Maybe you hear something coming and you speed up so it doesn’t catch the class. Soon the class is jogging in place instead of walking.
- Suddenly yell that there is a bear or some kind of predator chasing them and speed the jog to a run.
- Add in the “branches” and the “fallen trees” so that the students are warming up their other muscles as well by jumping and ducking.
- After the students are winded, slow them down again.
- Next you can pretend to “swim” across a river or “climb” tree or cliff.
- Anything other variation that requires movement at different speeds and loosens the body is great.
- The activity can carry on for however long and however silly as necessary.
After students are familiar with this warm-up, it’s fun to have their input on the type of story to tell or journey to take—the beach, a hike through the mountains, etc.