Jumping jacks are a highly coordinated skill but also one that is very common in elementary school. So what can you do if your little one is struggling with learning how to do jumping jacks? Here are some steps you can try!
Start by showing them what a jumping jack looks like and ask them to try it. You can do it with them so that they can model what you are doing. If they aren’t able to get it you can break it down into smaller steps.
- Have them stand in place and then jump so that their feet open. And then jump so their feet close. You can use spots or tape marks on the floor if they need extra cues. Take it slow and have them pause after each jump. Feel free to continue to model the task for them.
- Next have them jump with their feet open and then clap their hands over their heads once their feet are open. Then jump their feet closed and once closed bring their hands back down to their side. Model as needed and keep performing as 4 separate steps.
- Next make it into two steps. So they jump open and clap over their head at the same time. Pause and then jump close and bring arms down at the same time. Again, continue to model as needed.
- Now we are going to make it into one step. Jump open and clap overhead and then jump close and bring arms to the side without pausing in between. Stop after you complete one. Continue to model and complete in increments of one.
- Start adding more in without pausing. Do this one at a time.
If at any point they struggle with a step go back a step or two until they are successful and then slowly move forward again.
What is your favorite way to teach jumping jacks?