Cool as a cucumber
A cool down activity is always a nice refreshing change from the upbeat pace of the rest of a dance class.
A cool down activity also helps your body reset and this is very important. In addition, it can bring awareness to your students that this is the end of the dance class. We've found this awareness to be helpful as it encourages our students to put their last little energy, effort and focus into this one final activity!
In other words, TO GO OUT WITH A BANG!
Now, your students may not necessarily understand all of this, that is why it is important for you to teach them. Take the time to explain this to them in simple terms so that they can understand and get used to a cool down activity being a part of a normal dance class structure. In this way, they would learn and understand the value of a cool down activity and probably appreciate it more as well.
Given the fact that we are still working through our "Ocean" theme, with this week's focus on seaweed, we thought it was an obvious choice to model this activity after seaweed swaying in the ocean. We started in a low position and moved slowly upward to standing. Then reversed the movement, ending in the low position in which began.
How did it go?
This simple activity was well received by our students. We had fun playing around with different (slow to slowest) speeds which proved to be a good way to teach them about taking their time! We all know how most children can be. Everything is a race. It's always about being the first one to finish and of course, we saw a lot of those antics when this activity was first presented to them. Sooner rather than later, though, our students started to embrace the idea of taking their time and really got deep into things and at times shouted out in excitement over how slow they were moving!
One suggestion to make this activity a lot more calming would be softly playing some calm music or ocean sounds in the background to accompany the movement.
Take a look!
So if you are looking for a cool down activity to incorporate into your ocean themed dance class curriculum, then feel free to watch our video. We are certain that your students will be and feel as cool as a cucumber during and after this activity.
Keep It Cool,
Tiva & Randa