Deb Hopper’s Top 5 Tips for using muscle input to help kids concentrate in class
Remember that muscle resistance helps all kids. For kids who go too fast, muscle work helps slow them down, and for kids who just ‘can’t get going’, it helps to make them more alert.
- Chair push-ups help increase shoulder and arm strength. This helps with keeping kids in the ‘just right’ zone for ‘right now’, but over time it also helps build up strength for fine motor control. (see the Tool Chest book by Diana Henry for more info)
- Using a deskerciser, a band around the bottom of the chair allows kids to get leg resistance input while they sit at their desk.
- Play group games for strength, co-ordination and calming with a Co-operband. These great bands come in a few sizes, so you can choose small for a few kids or large for the whole class!
- In PE, get out the scooter boards and get kids to push themselves lying on their belly. This is great for strengthening their back muscles. Great for posture and sitting.
- Use a pencil topper for those kids who need mouth muscle (oral) input. Oral input is very effective and calming kids and getting them into the ‘just right” zone.