Thoughts on Across-the-Floor Movement
I’d like to share some observations we made after one of my college students lead a combination for ages 6 and 7. The combo was march for 8, make two shapes for 4 counts each, slide for 8.
Technique Issues: We noted a relative weakness for moving on the pulse in a sequence. Some children had trouble staying on the pulse. Generally, we spend time on creative and exploratory activities that are not metered. We see that we can spend more time on metered movement. The children are ready and interested.
How to help them improve? This can be handled by observing the weaknesses and addressing one of them at a time on a pass across the space. e.g. just focus on the pulse. Perhaps, after observing the skill level, have the children just march across. Then just slide across. Then do the combo. Some other things we could help the children focus on….thinking ahead for transitions, improving their performance energy, being aware of their traveling partner.
Space Issues: We found that an adult helper waiting on the other side to keep the children organized in the far corner was valuable. Without a helper, we might have the children peel off and return to the first line, always moving across the floor in the same direction. Or, revert to short lines and make the phrase shorter (4 marches, 4 slides).
Behavior: we found that some children moved across in pairs with a student who had the same low-energy attitude, and this held them back. It’s worth checking to see how people are paired up and fix that, after they move across the floor once.