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Year Around Fun for Everyone

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Two curriculum integration activities (language arts and math) for grades K-3.  
Submitted by Becky Tucci, Morrisville, North Carolina.  

Background: Here are two ideas for your kindergarten to third grade students. The first one is a fun language arts and math integration idea for your K-1st grade students. The second is a neat lead-up game that we have found works well with 2nd-3rd grade students.

Jump Rope Writers (Grades K-1)

Purpose: To reinforce letters, numbers, and shapes; directionality and laterality; using prepositions (i.e., on top of, beside, over, under) needed for games; and cooperative/peer tutor skills.

Assessment Value: Can be used to assess basic letter/number formation and recognition, math place values, gross motor and fine motor skills.

Equipment:
- Jump ropes

Set-Up: Students are given a jump rope and directed to find a spot in the gym. When they have found a suitable space, they will follow the teacher’s commands.

How We Do It: Using their jump ropes, the students will respond to the teacher’s cues. For example:

By yourself, or with a partner, can you …
- Form a circle with your jump rope?
- Form a square with your rope?
- Oval? Rectangle? Triangle? Diamond? Squiggle? Straight line?

“Can you make the first letter of your first name?â€

“Can you form the number you will be on your next birthday?â€

“Can you form the 12th letter of the alphabet?â€

Other: During this activity, the teacher can provide a variety of movement challenges. For example, “Can you make your body look like your shape?,†“Can you walk between the shapes on the floor?,†“Jump over the letters on the floor?,†“Step into a round shape?,†“Jump over a straight line?â€

Bucket Ball (Grades 2 and 3)

Purpose: Lead up skills for T-Ball, beginning strategies for throwing and base running.

Assessment Value: Can be used to assess throwing, catching, and fielding skills. General baseball/softball knowledge can be assessed and used to determine the next level of teaching the skills.

Equipment:
- Small gatorskin balls
- Softee bats
- Batting tees (or cones) and bases
- Large buckets

Set-Up: Create as many Bucket Ball diamonds as feasible. In this game, the batting players and the outfield players are numbered (i.e., #1-#6). Number 1 is the first batter and the Number 1 for the fielding team is the pitcher.

How We Play It: To begin the game, the pitcher throws the ball to the catcher, who places the ball on the batting tee. The batter will hit the ball off the tee and run the bases. The fielding team will retrieve the ball and throw it to the pitcher. The pitcher will place the ball in the bucket. Before the ball is placed in the bucket, the base runner must stop on the last base passed. The runner is out if he is not standing on a base when the ball is placed in the bucket.

Rotate Positions: When the second batter is ready, the original pitcher rotates to become the catcher. Outfield player #2 will become the pitcher, the outfielders move up one position, and the original catcher becomes an outfielder. The team will change sides after all players have batted or there are three outs.

Scoring: One run is scored for each player who gets to home plate.

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