Kidnastics:A Child-Centered Approach to Teaching Gymnastics


KiDnastics® makes your job easier:

-Simplifies instruction into three easy steps

-Frames content around just five movement categories

-Increases kids' movement vocabulary

-Goes beyond isolated skills to routines and sequences

-Provides for individual differences

-Requires little or no spotting

Forget about dragging around heavy gymnastics equipment; put an end to your worries about student safety. This book brings to life an instructional model...

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KiDnastics® makes your job easier:

-Simplifies instruction into three easy steps

-Frames content around just five movement categories

-Increases kids' movement vocabulary

-Goes beyond isolated skills to routines and sequences

-Provides for individual differences

-Requires little or no spotting

Forget about dragging around heavy gymnastics equipment; put an end to your worries about student safety. This book brings to life an instructional model that will change the way you teach gymnastics.

KiDnastics® is a simplification and a rethinking of traditional gymnastics. It's a one-of-a-kind program inspired by children and built around the joy of moving and the interplay of movement and the environment. Borrowing elements from traditional and educational gymnastics, KiDnastics places the conceptual focus on how both traditional and nontraditional equipment can be adapted, changed, or manipulated to produce different practice environments for more efficient student learning. No special equipment is required, and the concepts are adaptable to any physical education setting, regardless of resources or budget.

This highly visual book takes a unique, three-step approach to teaching gymnastics:

1. Practice single skills.
2. Sequence the skills together.
3. Perform them for an audience.

To simplify instruction, the KiDnastics model frames its content around just five movement categories: rolling, jumping, balancing, vaulting, and hanging and climbing. The book presents 70 skills divided into 16 themes within those movement categories. Once the students learn some basic movement skills, they combine them into sequences with partners, trios, or small groups. The kids choreograph their own routines (often coming up with very creative sequences) and have a blast in the process, all the while learning cooperation and teamwork. Finally, students demonstrate their routines in a variety of ways. The book gives you tons of ideas to help you coordinate a culminating event—a KiDnastics show—by providing organizational ideas, formats, checklists, and sample parental newsletters.

This step-by-step line of attack makes it easy for you to learn the KiDnastics approach and then teach it to your students. You play the role of facilitator, presenting tasks that students practice first in one environment and then in many different environments to expand their movement repertoires. The book includes illustrated task cards that you can photocopy and laminate so that class preparation is easy—just have students select task cards and then develop their own routines.

This child-centered approach applies COPEC's (Council on Physical Education for Children) developmentally appropriate physical education practices by helping students acquire a well-rounded movement base and challenging them to select their favorite moves and refine their skills through practice of their own partner sequences. KiDnastics is also effective in inclusive settings because the students work at their own ability levels in noncompetitive situations, and you can provide for individual differences by modifying or reconfiguring the practice environment.

KiDnastics works equally well whether you prefer a child-centered, indirect, and problem-solving style or a more direct style. It's a great way to make your job easier and at the same time help students have more fun and achieve greater success.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780736033947
  • Publisher: Human Kinetics Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/6/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 184
  • Age range: 5 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Eric Malmberg, EdD, has traveled the world studying gymnastics teaching and systems, and he has taught gymnastics at every level from preschool to national and Olympic levels. He has coached four national championship teams and numerous All-Americans, and he has been named National and Regional College Gymnastics Coach of the Year many times.

Malmberg is an associate professor of physical education and former department chair at the State University of New York at Cortland, where he was voted “most valuable faculty” by students in 2002. He has been a member of the USA Gymnastics Education Subcommittee for many years. He is also a member of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance; the National Association for Sport and Physical Education; the Council on Physical Education for Children; and the New York Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance—the latter of which recently bestowed on him an Amazing Person Award. Malmberg is also coauthor of Sequential Gymnastics and I Can Do Gymnastics.

Malmberg holds a doctorate in teaching and curriculum from Syracuse University. He and his wife, Sue, live in Marathon, New York, and have three kids (who, according to Malmberg, constantly reinforce the principles brought forth in this book). In his leisure time, Malmberg enjoys hiking, kayaking, and backpacking.

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Table of Contents


How to Use This Book

Part I. Understanding KiDnastics®

Chapter 1. Rethinking Gymnastics Instruction: How KiDnastics® Evolved
Listening With Our Eyes
Other Gymnastics Models
A Hybrid Model
A Three-Step Approach
A Style-Free Model

Chapter 2. Environmental Manipulation: An Approach to Skill Development
Expanding Movement Vocabulary
Specific Shaping of Skills
Nontraditional KiDnastics Environments

Chapter 3. Teaching and Assessing KiDnastics®
Using the Three-Step Approach

Part II. Practicing Environmentally

Chapter 4. Rolling Environments
Rolling Skill or Theme 1: Four Basic Rolls
Rolling Skill or Theme 2: Safety Rolls
Rolling Skill or Theme 3: Forward, Backward, and Shoulder Rolls

Chapter 5. Jumping Environments
Jumping Skill or Theme 1: Good Landings
Jumping Skill or Theme 2: Five Basic Jumps
Chapter 6. Balancing Environments
Balancing Skill or Theme 1: Static Balances
Balancing Skill or Theme 2: Upright Dynamic Balances
Balancing Skill or Theme 3: Inverted Balances (Tip-Ups and Head Balances)
Balancing Skill or Theme 4: Inverted Balances (Hand Walks and Balances)

Chapter 7. Vaulting Environments
Vaulting Skill or Theme 1: Animal Movements
Vaulting Skill or Theme 2: Wheeling and Cartwheeling
Vaulting Skill or Theme 3: Front, Flank, and Straddle Vaulting
Chapter 8. Hanging and Climbing Environments
Hanging and Climbing Skill or Theme 1: Hanging Shapes
Hanging and Climbing Skill or Theme 2: Hanging and Traveling
Hanging and Climbing Skill or Theme 3: Rotating
Hanging and Climbing Skill or Theme 4: Supporting

Part III. Sequencing and Performing KiDnastics® Routines
Chapter 9. Ideas for Sequencing and Performing
What Is a KiDnastics Sequence?
Sequencing Within the Five KiDnastics Movement Categories
Sequencing Across the Five KiDnastics Movement Categories
Teacher-Selected Sequences
Task Cards
Student-Selected Sequences
Performing KiDnastics Work
KiDnastics Partner Routines: An Authentic Assessment

Chapter 10. Organizing and Performing KiDnastics® Shows: A Culminating Event
What Is a KiDnastics Show?
Why Do a KiDnastics Show?
Who Can Participate in a KiDnastics Show?
Invitations to a KiDnastics Show

About the Author
Appendix: Task Cards

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