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Name of Activity:

Wipe Out!

Purpose of Activity:

To perform specific sequential movement patterns while moving accurately to the beat of the music; connect movement of a simple, repetitive dance to aerobic activity and endurance.


Discuss arm movements of the 3 basic swim strokes: front crawl, back crawl and breaststroke. Practice moving to music and listening to change in phrases. Work on changing levels and doing so slowly and quickly. Teach or review the dance moves of the Twist and Monkey (60s dance move)

Suggested Grade Level:


Recommended music:

Wipe Out by the Surfaries

Beginning dance formation:

Start in a circle with everyone on a low level, in tuck position.

Description of Idea

During the introduction students jump up from tuck and shake their hands in the air over their head. First part - walking forward 16 counts while doing a front crawl movement with the arms, walking backward 16 count back crawl, transfer weight side to side and 16 count breaststroke.

2nd part - in place - 16 count twist, 16 count monkey, 16 count twist

Repeat this pattern until end. During the last 8 counts pretend to surf and then sink to the ground holding your nose like you're going underwater.


After the basic pattern of steps is learned and the students can count, keep the beat, and remember the sequence of the steps, some of the movements can be made more challenging. For instance: one of the swimming movements could have students doing the crawl 4x on one leg while balancing in a front scale,or doing the back stroke with a backward skip, or doing the breaststroke with jump half turns every 4 strokes. All theses could be taught in the course of the song and may also be used as challenges for students that wish to add more variety to this dance. That would add interest and physical challenges without slowing things down.

To make this dance more difficult start in lines facing and travel safely between people.

Assessment Ideas:

Teacher generated check list that focuses on teacher observation of the students' performance. The list could include: rhythm, memory, etc.

If the class has discussed the effect of exercise on the heart, students could be asked to feel their heart rates before the dance and after the dance in order to demonstrate the effects of exercise on the heart.

Adaptations for Students with Disabilities

To make this appropriate for the less skilled students or wheelchair bound students the whole dance could be done in a stationary position using just the arm movements.

Wheelchairs could be pushed forward, backward or in a circle by assistants or classmates.

Submitted by Teri Coker who teaches at McCollum Elementary in Albuquerque, NM. Thanks for contributing to PE Central! Posted on PEC: 1/18/2022.
Viewed 54630 times since 11/15/2005.

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Wipe Out!

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