Many of us (especially those of us of a certain age), grew up playing this simple game. It usually was played with a small rubber "pinky" ball. When it was your turn, you said the poem, filling in all the blanks, while simultaneously and continuously bouncing the ball. Stop bouncing, catch or miss the ball or if unable to fill in a blank - you were out of the game. Last one is the winner.
What we didn't know was how great this simple game was for the brain. Pulling together abstract thinking, demanding quick processing and pairing it all with motor coordination. It is a complex task that requires simultaneous use of multiple areas of the brain.
Try it with your students - Their performance may surprise you!
The Original Poem:
Follow the alphabet. All blanks must begin with the current letter.
"A" my name is "Alice"
I come from "Atlanta"
And I like "Apples"
Variations - Adaptations:
Change the Motor Challenge:
Lift your leg over the ball as it bounces every time you say your letter word (Alice; atlanta...)
Alternate hands as you bounce
After a few rounds, change the direction of play or shuffle players positions
Use different size balls
Use more than 1 ball - so 2 play at a time
Throw the ball up and catch it, instead of bouncing (our small ergo ball is perfect for this! It won't roll away.)
Use a balloon and keep tapping it up - alternate hands for an added challenge
Clap- set a pattern or rhythm that everyone does
Add a memory component:
"My name is mike, her name is Mary, his name is John"
"My name is Mary and I like Merry-go-rounds, he likes licorice, she likes kites"
Customize the poem as needed:
Practice vital information: use the students real name, address, and maybe add a phone number.
Practice Spelling words: My word is _____ and it is spelled _______.
Keep it simple: My name is _______ and my favorite food /TV show/Super hero/Subject in school is _______.
PFOT PRIVATE NEWSLETTER SPECIAL:
FREE SMALL ERGO BALL - perfect for catching, throwing, squeezing, holding... (You might want to order an extra one, because you won't want to give yours up!)
Enter coupon code:ALICE and get 1 free small ergo ball with your order. $35 min order. Expires Monday 9-15-14 at midnite. 1 free per customer/address. Black ball with varied imprints including: Happy Birthday; You Rock; Good Job; etc. Sorry- No choice of imprint.
4" Nubby sensory balls Senso-dot Balls 4 pack
7" Perfect size to catch! Sensory Ball
What looks like a Fish - But catchs like a ball. Spikey Blow Fish
PS: $5 Flat Rate Shipping Ends THIS WEEK! Order Soon!