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Name of Activity:

Rhythmic Ribbons

Purpose of Activity:

To practice various locomotor skills and to provide children with the opportunity to experiment with movement to music.


A familiarity with the locomotor skills to be employed.

Suggested Grade Level:


Materials Needed:

Rhythmic Ribbons, one per child. To make inexpensive ribbons: Begin with plastic shower curtain rings. Attach one, two, or three (depending on the width) one yard lengths of ribbon to the rings by looping one end of the ribbon over the ring and securing with a hot glue gun. The other end of the ribbon should then be folded over twice and glued to keep it from fraying.

Description of Idea

Put on some lively music and allow children to express the rhythms through dance with the ribbons.
1.Making Rainbows
Have the children lay on the floor and pretend to be asleep. Recite the following rhyme:

Rain, rain, go away
Come again another day
So that we can run and play.

When the thunder claps,
The clouds will clear
and pretty rainbows will appear.

At this, clap your hands and have the children jump up and run slowly, holding their ribbons high over their heads, throughout the movement space.

Repeat this activity using various locomoter skills, such as: skipping, hopping, galloping, taking giant steps, walking backwards, etc.

2.Moving to the Music
Create a CD or tape by dubbing music of different genres with a variety of tempos. Ask the children to move to the beat.

Assessment Ideas:

1.Making Rainbows
Is the student able to:
a. move when the cue is given?
b. listen to the locomotor skill that is to be performed and make an attempt at that skill?
c. execute the given locomotor skill?

2.Moving to the Beat
Is the student able to:
a. differentiate amongst different tempos and, if so,
b. translate that difference in beat to the movement of his/her body?

Adaptations for Students with Disabilities

If the child is unable to grasp objects, create a special ribbon by attaching ribbons to an elastic band that can then be put around the wrist. Hair scrunchees work well for this.
If the child has no use of his/her arms, create a ribbon with an elastic band that can be placed around the ankle.

Submitted by Anne Schaeffer who teaches at Somerset Valley YMCA in Somerville, NJ. Thanks for contributing to PE Central! Posted on PEC: 9/22/2003.
Viewed 116062 times since 5/25/2003.

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Rhythmic Ribbons

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