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Spatial Awareness Physical Education Games

Instructor: Jennifer Smith

Jenn has been an educator for 10 years. She has a master's degree in Teacher Leadership and a bachelors degree in Elementary Education and English Language Acquisition.

These activities and games can help students understand what spatial awareness is. The games will also increase students' spatial awareness so that, as they grow older, they will be aware of themselves and their surroundings.

Spatial Awareness Activities and Games

Spatial awareness is a skill that children acquire as they age. However, it is important to hone in on these skills while they are younger in order for children to become aware of themselves and their surroundings. Spatial awareness exercises are building blocks in understanding spatial ability and awareness concepts, such as math skills, visual perceptual skills and body awareness. Use the following activities and games to help children build their spatial awareness and have fun while improving their skills.

I Spy

This activity challenges children to be aware of their surroundings and pay attention to given clues. One person finds an object in the room and says: 'I spy with my little eye something...,' giving a simple hint. The other person must guess. To make the game more challenging, add in a near/far object, and when the person guesses incorrectly, hint whether it is near or far away from them.

Simon Says

This exercise is great for improving student ability to follow directions. One person is Simon and gives directions that everyone else follows. If students carry out the wrong command, use the wrong side of their body or don't listen, then they are out. Be sure to have Simon include right and left when giving commands. After all, children with spatial issues tend to get right and left mixed up.

Musical Chairs

Musical chairs challenges children to be aware of the space around them, be aware of the pace at which they walk and maneuver around other people. The classical music that accompanies the movement has shown benefits related to organizing thoughts and spatial-temporal reasoning.

Materials

  • classical music
  • music player
  • chairs

Instructions

Set the chairs up in a circle and have students walk around them while the music plays. When the music stops, they must safely find a spot to sit. Every time, take out a chair so one student is left standing each round. That student is out. You might award the winner of the game a small prize.

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