Storytelling, Yoga and Coding

It is not easy to find authentic English materials for the younger ones apart from songs, chants and traditional stories. Yet, these can be boring after a while. That's how I came across Cosmic Kids Yoga, in search of engaging authentic resources for young English language learners. With Cosmic Kids Yoga, children can learn and do yoga while listening to Jamie's stories (she has an amazing English accent). What is so special for me about this story is that I uploaded my lesson idea to the Digital Educational Materials Resource Bank (Tempus Foundation, Hungary) and received a Digital Educator Award for my work.  

 

Here are the steps of our beloved Calypso the Flamingo lesson.

 

 

Step 1: Meet Calypso the Flamingo

 

To help students understand the story better, I created a storybook for them. We read it together and highlighted some important words (flamingo, birthday party, fly, parrot, surfing, monkey, jungle, crab, playing football, coconut, pineapple, mango, banana). The following questions can also help them understand the story: How old is Calypso? What does she have today? What does she forget? Who helps her? 

 

Click on the image to download the book:

 

 

 

Step 2: Yoga-time

 

We used bath towels as we don't have yoga mats at school. The video lasts for 16 minutes, perfectly enough for classroom use.

 

 

 

Step 3: After-story activities

 

To spice up the lesson, I used programmable floor-robots and micro: bits during the after-story part. First, we revised the directions and basic instructions (turn left / right, move forward / backwards three steps). Then we practised the most important words from the Calypso story with the cards I prepared for the robot activity. Floor-robot cards

 

There are many ways to use the cards and the floor-robot for consolidation. The simplest one is when the students choose a card and direct the robot to it.  They say the instructions in English and name the cards. If this is not their first yoga time, they can even perform the yoga pose when they land on a card (e.g. tree pose).

 

You can make the task more challenging by adding dangers or obstacles. We put volcanos or made a labyrinth out of pencils.

 

 The most challenging task was when we used the micro: bit to show the directions on shake. Students had to visit the different cards in chronological order based on the story but they had to start in the direction the micro: bit showed them.

 

 

 

 

Step 4: Story-telling with Blue-bot application

 

 

I created a mat for the Blue-bot app to retell the story while directing the blue-bot through the mat. I started the sentence and the students finished it. There is a printable version of this activity that students can do as homework:

 

Unplugged Calypso PDF

 

     

 

 

Cover photo: Logo vector created by macrovector - www.freepik.com

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Hi! I'm Natalia!

Welcome to NatiEnglish where you'll find fun and engaging learning activities and ideas to encourage young English language learners in the 21st Century.

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