Combining academic performance and physical activity may sound a bit conflicting. Surprisingly however, not only do academic performance and physical activity go together, they work best together.(Source)
Studies have shown that academic performance can be increased through regular physical activity. This is because physical activity increases the amount of blood flow to the brain. Increased blood flow then releases endorphins which work to elevate mood and prevent mental fatigue. Furthermore, the overall learning experience of the student is enhanced through the direct physical involvement. (Source)
Here are examples of two exercises which will improve both students’ academic and physical skills- as well as providing a much needed break for teachers:
Math Flash Cards:
Create a series of flash cards with appropriate math problems. Have students form a circle, with one student holding the ball. The students are to pass the ball around the circle until told to stop. Whoever is holding the ball must answer the question on the flash card correctly. The ball is then thrown to another student in the circle and the game is continued until each student has had a turn at answering a question.
Spelling Musical Chairs
Set up a number of chairs in a circle, with the number of available seats being one fewer than the number of students participating. Have students march around the outside of the chairs to music, then stop the music. The student without a seat is “it”. Ask the student to spell a word. If spelt correctly, the student is allowed to tag another student and take that student’s seat. Continue until a student misspells a word. That student is then out of the game. (Source)