We found fourth and fifth graders need a little coercion to get them curious about how their bodies affect their brains. So we start with the lesson Getting Started ( p.33 in the book A New SENSORY Self Awareness). The Muscle Testing lesson helps them get the feel of their bodies’ connection to muscle strength and listening. How the two, muscles and listening, come together is related to hydration. The kindergartners to third graders can go right into the all the other lessons without any convincing. Check out this link for the step-by-step procedures with the younger kids at Get Sensational Attention.
Here’s How We Begin
Pick a child from the classroom and look at how big the head is, then use a water balloon to represent the size of the brain. Share with the kids how the brain is full of water and drinks more water than any organ. As a result, if the student is not feeling well simply because they need water, the muscles know it long before the brain and muscle strength weakens. Listening and attention also gets depleted when dehydrated.
The older elementary school kids play the game Hula Relay“(p. 58) instead of Personal Bubbles Freeze Dance. The relay game is a fun way to introduce spatial awareness inside the body and the space around them. If the kids step on the hula-hoop or bump into other, it gives a chance to open their ears and minds to learn the practice No Place Like Home. The Home lesson gives the kids an opportunity to feel the differences between how they play when their attention is just outside themselves compared to both inside their bodies and around them.
With fourth and fifth graders we are giving the kids an introduction to their own best friend inside. The uniqueness of who they are comes into awareness. When awareness grows, they grow in both their hearts and minds.