Background: Have you ever met a ball with an attitude? Here’s a creative way to introduce the concept of having a “positive attitude” to your younger students. We use it as a part of our general class expectations and initial introduction to our physical education program at the beginning of the year.
- A Bigen Ball or Omnikin ball (36″ or larger)
- Black electrical tape to make a face of eyes, nose and a mouth on the ball
- Several coins (if needed) to place under the tape
Set-Up: Prior to this activity, use black electrical tape and create “Mr. Attitude” by using a 36″ or larger Bigen Ball or Omnikin ball. Use the black tape to make a face with a frown on it.
How We Do It: We have our students sit together on the basketball court facing the half court jump circle. I take “Mr. Attitude” and place it in the circle. We start out by having the face “looking at” the students as I begin to speak. The weight of the black electric tape (and coins placed under the tape if needed) will begin to cause the ball to roll out of the circle. Pretending that I am annoyed, I make a face, get the ball and put it back in the circle and tell him to stay! Once again, it rolls outside the circle. (It’s about now that the students will start laughing!) After several attempts, I pick up the ball and place it upside down so it will balance and not move.
Object Lesson: I explain that we all have attitudes and react differently to situations. Just like “Mr. Attitude,” we may react in a good way or in a way that may not be acceptable. Things always seem to go better with a good attitude! Throughout the year, it’s common for our younger students to say “I must have “˜Mr. Attitude’” (i.e., their basketball or soccer ball has an attitude and won’t do what they want it to do). Of course, we give it a “time out” and allow the child to get another ball which always seems to work better! We hope you and your students wiII enjoy this idea. We have found it to be very motivational as each student strives to do his or her best and to have a good attitude in our physical education classes.