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Teacher: Diana Berry who teaches at Guilford Middle - Grades 3-5; Guilford Primary in Greensboro, NC.

Name of Best Practice: Purchase A State by Walking

Rationale/Purpose of Event: To motivate students to become physically active and to integrate physical fitness with social studies and math.

Suggested Grade Level: K-5

Materials Needed: USA Map; designated walking areas; USA facts; cut outs to represent states purchased and cars.

Purchase A State by Walking

Each fifth grade class is given a list of the United States and the number of laps needed to "purchase" each state. The class has to walk the laps together for them to count. When the laps have been completed, the teacher completes an information form with the name of the state they wish to buy, time submitted, and date. The class will receive, in return, a state fact slip with the state's abbreviation, bird, nickname, and population. (You may choose any state fact for this slip.)

On the gym wall I have a USA map with each 5th grade teacher's name beside it. As states are purchased, I place a USA cut out with the state's initials on it beside the teacher's name.

The competition developed quite strongly between classes. The winner this year won by three states.

The class winner could receive, for example; extra physical education time, refreshments based on their favorite state,
game time based on states (state BINGO), etc.

I have extra information forms posted in the teachers' work room with a list of states that have been purchased. This keeps teachers updated and the project continuing more efficiently.

I only see my classes once a week. This project helps keep the students physically active and assists them in the recognition of state location and facts.


Raleigh Walk - Our fourth grade does take a field trip to the state capitol. I have a NC map on the gym wall. Each fourth grade has a car (which students have colored) placed on a number line. The car moves down the line as the number of laps walked increases. We use the approximate number of miles to the capitol as the number of laps needed. Helps students with map skills, location of capitol, and physical activity.

JUNGLE JAUNT - used in K-2; walking laps around black top on playground. One of my kindergarten teachers uses this to help students with their counting. The goal was to walk 100 laps. This one class is now on 583! However, they need to count on assessments is how they count as they walk. One thing that surprised the teacher was that the students don't talk while they walk! She has never told them not to - they just never have! Parents have painted a jungle scene on one of the hall walls, and we have a jeep for each class that moves along with the number of laps walked.

Use PE Central's Log It Online Walking Program to keep track of the miles walked as well.

Teaching Suggestions/Tips:

Keep the states purchased current! Students check and count the number of states beside their class name when they come to the gym.

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Posted on PEC: 2/22/2003 and has received 62 votes.

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