Skill-focused movement

Coordination skills with beanbags

Q: What inspired you to create a movement program?

A: Several years ago I had the opportunity to create digital content for an education program. For the first time I recorded instructional voiceovers and videos of me doing different activities with children. This was really fun to do and it all came quite naturally to me. I was totally in my element and doing what I loved, which made me realise that I really do have so much to share with others who work with early learners.

I suddenly become very eager to share my activity ideas, teaching methods and tips with others. I was motivated by the simple fact that the more adults there are teaching movement correctly and often, the more children there will be with sound emotional and physical well-being.

Movement supports holistic development. Through the consistent practice of regular movement, all areas of a child’s social, emotional and physical well-being are being catered to. However, the crucial period for this to take place is in the early years, when a child’s brain is like a sponge, soaking up every new experience.

Therefore, it is the responsibility of adults to teach movement well and often. And not just any movement, but purposeful, skill-focused movement that will positively affect a child’s physical and academic development.

This is why the MoovKids program focuses on the physical development of children aged three to seven. During these years, children’s brains are optimised for learning. Each new experience creates neural pathways in their ever-developing brains. Quality teaching and repetition of a movement experience then strengthens that newly created pathway, which supports muscle memory and brain development for future learning.

Based on research of the fundamental movement skills, I decided to create a curriculum with lessons that focus on six different areas: static and dynamic balance, locomotive and manipulative skills, axial stability and spatial awareness.

As a result of my teaching experience I am also very aware that regular skill-focused movement is of great benefit to children who have academic or physical challenges. Often it is a lack of exposure to a wide variety of movement experiences in the early years that effects a child’s ability to progress academically. This too, was the driving power behind my energy and enthusiasm to create a program that is fun to do and fun to teach.

In the program I share teaching and safety tips, the benefits of doing each activity, clear written instructions, as well as short videos that show very clearly how each activity looks when being done with children. This all supports easy lesson planning, and inspires the adults to teach well and with purpose. In addition, I have recorded a voice track for each video to directly inspire children to do the activities with enthusiasm and energy.

I have the potential and the opportunity to make a difference to children’s physical and academic development with MoovKids. I am determined to achieve this and will keep striving forward to make the MoovKids program the best it can be.

There is a saying I once heard, “Just let the children move and all else will come.” This is so true.

Teaching movement to young children is challenging, but by using my simple teaching methods with a concise and clear lesson plan, anyone can teach movement successfully to young children and make an important difference in their lives.

Darlene Koskinen