Why do we do so many songs with movements, especially for young learners?
It doesn’t seem connected, but we keep students moving to increase their vocabulary!
Total Physical Response (TPR) is a method of language teaching which intends to create a link between body movement and verbal input. By acting out words, students internalize the word’s meaning and create a brain link between action and speech.
With TPR, students learn the meaning of words they hear by direct observation. They see and feel the meaning of the word before being told what it means.
TPR also has the benefit of keeping students physically active, and has even been linked to reduction of stress and anxiety.
At home, you can encourage this type of language learning by playing the game “Simon Says,” playing a “follow me” game where students follow your actions, and reading and acting out action books like “From Head to Toe” by Eric Carle or “We’re Going on A Bear Hunt” by Michael Rosen.
So, go ahead and stomp like an elephant, tiptoe through a dark cave, and row your boat!