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Movement Composition 2023

Central Idea

People express themselves differently through dance and music


This unit gave kids the opportunity to explore movement in a different way since for most of our students this is their first exposure to gymnastics. Many have not experienced a forward roll before. We started quite basic but we also progressed to using key AtL skills to help them learn these new skills. We did want to include a group performance into this unit but just ran out of time.

Lesson 1

We started this first unit by going over the essential agreements and rules of our gymnastics room. It is a different environment than the gym and requires particular attention to safety. There’s balance beams, a single bar, parallel bars, etc., therefore, safety is absolutely crucial in this room.

After introducing the rules of the room and each piece of equipment the kids went through their warm-up that I projected up on the screen.

Once their warm-up was completed the kids had 15 minutes to explore the room, try out the equipment safely with me and my teaching assistant supervising.

I then gathered the kids back to our ‘meeting mat’, the area in front of the screen, and discussed what we would we doing in this unit. We watched this epic video from the Tokyo Olympics.

I intentionally chose this video as it demonstrated that men can do gymnastics as well considering it’s stereotypically done only by girls at schools. But after seeing this video a lot of the boys were in awe.

I then introduced the unit, their central idea, and then their project, which was to create a 10-movement sequence that consisted of a variety of movements.

We ended the lesson with 5 minutes of moving time where they could use the equipment freely yet safely.

Lesson 2

We started the lesson off with the warm-up I introduced in the previous lesson. I like having the kids come straight into class and getting stuck right into an activity. There is no idle time whilst we wait for everyone to get into the gym. If a bunch of kids get in first then they get more activity time, those that come in later have less time. Once they are finished their warm-up or once 5 minutes is up we gather on our meeting mat and we start the lesson introduction.

We then did a “jump up” review. I ask a question related to our unit and they jump up if they want to share a response. Just to keep our lesson active. I asked, “what’s our unit?” “What did we do last lesson?”

Afterwards, I demonstrated our floor work relay. This consisted of 4 teams with 4 activities the kids needed to complete.

Activity 1: Walk on a jump rope (balance)

Activity 2: Forward roll on a wedge (roll)

Activity 3: Half/Full turn jump in a hula-hoop (jump)

Activity 4: Low beam walk (balance)

Activity 5: Skip back to the start and tag the next team member (travel)

Each activity here was related to a category of gymnastics. Anybody we saw that needed help with an activity I pulled out and work on individually. Whilst I was with these kids, our teaching assistant was supervising the main activity.


After a few rounds of this I shared our driving question and then asked them to answer the question using the central idea.

I then showed them part of this video from Cirque Du Soleil and asked the question, “is this an engaging performance?”

After the video, I asked the kids what they said as they were watching and they said “WOW” and “COOL” to name a couple. They determined that because they were saying those things that it must be engaging. We unpacked what made the scene engaging and they came up with difficult tricks, scenery, music, costumes.

We ended the lesson with everyone analyzing and attempting the bridge to get some basic skills in.

Lesson 3

After the warm-up, we gathered around and did our “jump up” review routine. We answered the driving question again using the Central Idea.

I then introduced our PowerPoint for this unit, you can access by clicking on the picture below.

We split into 3 groups. One group would be with our teaching assistant on the beam where they would be covering the Walks from the PowerPoint. Another group would be with me on the single bar and the final group would be independently working on the floor movements where they have the PowerPoint for guidance.

We spent about 8 minutes at each station. After the second rotation we gathered on the meeting mat and I introduced the Learner Profile for this unit – Courageous.

I asked them how does being courageous connect with this unit. We discussed this and then went for our final rotation.

Lesson 4

After the warm-up and ‘jump up’ review routine we did the Driving Question but added in the Courageous Learner Profile as part of their response.

We followed the same format as the previous lesson but focused on the beam where they would be working on turns and jumps, handstands, and floor work. The kids will have iPads to help them at the floor station.

After 2 rotations I introduced the kids to their first AtL of this unit, Analysis. You can access my AtL document here that connects the AtLs to PE.

After a brief discussion about the connection between the Analysis AtL and the unit we did our final rotation.

Lesson 5

We did our warm-up, jump up review and then the Driving Question which now included the Central Idea, Learner Profile, and AtL.

Since we introduced the kids to most of the movements from the PowerPoint, albeit, only briefly, it was time for them to start their project. The beauty of having kids working on their projects independently means it allows me and our teaching assistant free to assist those that need extra attention with their movements.

I introduced the students to their planning document.

Lesson 5

The goal of today was for the kids to choose and practice at least 4 movements for their performance. The students had our PE iPads available to help them choose their movements. Before sending them off to work on their project I introduced the students to the Plan, Perform, Reflect cycle. They worked out that this cycle is continuous with the goal of improving their performance.

For the rest of the lesson students worked independently to create their performance. Meanwhile, this left me and my teaching assistant free to roam around and help out wherever we felt we needed to be or if a student asked for our assistance.

Lesson 6

After our warm-up, jump up review, driving question routines the students continued with their planning, performing, and reflecting. Their goal was to complete 8-10 movements. This lesson was primarily student-led, which freed my teaching assistant and I to help out wherever we were needed. I absolutely love these types of lessons since it demonstrates how independently capable these kids can be when given the opportunity.

Lesson 7

After usual routine of warming up, reviewing, and responding to the Driving Question, I introduced the plan for the day.

I introduced the second AtL of the unit – Evaluation. After the kids had a read of the slide, I gave a mindful pause to allow them to answer the question of, “how does evaluation connect with this unit”?

The kids were paired up randomly using Team Shake on my phone and they performed for each other and then evaluated each other’s movements. This data would then be used in the next lesson as a reflective tool.

Lesson 8

Following our usual lesson starters we answered the Driving Question but now including our second AtL of Evaluation.

Students went back to their planning documents as well as the Evaluation their partner filled out for them. They spent about 20 minutes using the Plan, Perform, Reflect cycle to improve their performance. There was a flurry of activity with kids improving their individual skills, some researching new skills, some analyzing the movements on the iPad and finding ways to improve their own skills, and some sorting out the order of their movements to make it flow better. This was a great lesson to be a part of.

With about 10 minutes to go, I introduced the next element of their performance – music. This part of the unit I wanted to spend more time on but time was critical and we needed to wrap this unit up so we had enough time for their subsequent unit. We lost a large chunk of time due to COVID lockdowns previously.

This next activity was to let the kids move freely to the music and see how each song made them move. I played these songs: River by Bishop Briggs, Faded by Alan Walker, Happy by Pharrell, and Around the World by Daft Punk. After this activity I asked the kids what emotions each song made them feel. After this lesson, we were running a bit overtime, I told them that they can choose one of those songs to put with their performance.  

Lesson 9

After our usual start of lesson routine the kids informed me which music they wanted as part of their performance. We then had 15 minutes to practice their movement sequences with the music. Unfortunately, the kids only chose two songs out of the 4 which made me really sick of these two songs – Faded and Happy. I alternated playing these two songs for the next 15 minutes.

Our next activity was to evaluate their performance with their music.

I broke the Happy song group into 2 groups with each person from one Happy song group watching someone else in the other Happy song group. I hope that makes sense to you. Let me know in the comment box if this doesn’t.

I did the same thing for the Sad song group (Faded).

Using this feedback, the kids will be going through the Plan, Perform, Reflect cycle to refine their performance.

Lesson 10

We followed the usual lesson starter routine and then the kids worked independently using their new evaluation activity feedback to refine their performance. I played the same two songs repeatedly throughout the lesson. My Teaching Assistant and I were wandering around helping those that needed help or requested it.

Lesson 11

We did not do a warm-up for this lesson. We needed the entire lesson for the kids to perform their final performances. These performances were uploaded onto Seesaw for their families and friends to see.

Whilst one student was performing, the two subsequent performing students were waiting in the ready area with their plans doing any last minute preparations they felt they needed. The rest of the class were in the audience watching and applauding before and after the performance.

It was great to see them supporting each other although I did have to remind some children how to be respectful audience members.

Lesson 12

We moved back into the gym for this lesson. The students had 5 minutes of Moving Time where they have a trolley-full of equipment to use and just move around freely. They can shoot baskets, kick a soccer ball, use small or long jump ropes, basically just move around. We then did our ‘jump up’ review routine which populated the whiteboard with the Central Idea, Learner Profile, Atl #1, and AtL #2.

Above is the reflection each student needed to complete. They watched and evaluated their performance and then answered the Driving Question.

With about 10 minutes left of the lesson we separated into 4 teams and played a game of Castle. You can see how this game is played here. Any students needing more time with their reflection stayed with me until they were complete.

Unit Reflection

I liked the way this unit was organized and I got a massive kick out of seeing how well the kids worked independently when creating their performances. They had a solid understanding of the Plan, Perform, Reflect cycle and how it helped them enhance their performance. The way I structured the Driving Question and gradually dripping in the elements of the unit (learner profile and AtLs), I felt, assisted their understanding of these elements since they were explicitly introduced and continuously touched upon. There were ample opportunities for movement and many of them enhanced their gymnastics abilities. The Analysis and Evaluation AtLs were used frequently since we had specific activities targeting these AtLs. Although, I felt more could be done with the music since this part of the unit was rushed.

Overall, I’m pleased with how this unit was executed but as always, it can always be improved.

Any questions or comments? Feel free to drop me a message in the chat box.

G3 - Body Systems: Project
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