Thursday, February 28, 2013

SPIDERMAN revisited

            Some children get stuck in the Body-Side pattern, which should lead to the Cross-Lateral pattern.  As Spiderman, the child can move laterally at first, then  use arms and legs alternating – right arm with left leg, left arm with right leg, in a truly Cross-Lateral movement  Some children will do this as a Body-Side activity for weeks or months and only come to Cross-Lateral movement after they have had success for many days with the one-sided Spiderman.

The direction is simple and very engaging – who doesn’t want to be Spiderman? I tell them, “Your job is to move like Spiderman does, going across the room as if you were going up a wall.  Use your right hand and your left foot, then your left hand and your right foot. Go as far as you can in one direction, go back in the other direction.  Do that twice the length of the linoleum.”

There is a big Vestibular component to this exercise, because the head is almost upside-down as they move along the floor. If the space is big enough, the children could each have a section of wall and pretend to be Spiderman vertically.  For most children this isn’t as much fun and, for me, it does not have the Vestibular component because the whole body is vertical.

When the children do Brain Dance every day, they are familiar with the names and bodymovements of “Body-Side,” “Cross-Lateral,” and “Vestibular.”  Because of this daily familiarity and practice, they know WHY they are doing Spiderman – I like to think that helps them enjoy it!