Tried It Tuesday - GoNoodle

We have our state testing this week. It doesn't sound as high-stakes as many of the tests that some of your students are taking, but the data is still used to report on the district and look at individual progress.

A while back, I was introduced to {}. You may have seen others blogging about it. GoNoodle is a website with free brain breaks that my students really enjoy.

First, you pick a Champ.

From there, you get to choose a variety of brain breaks, ranging from calming, breathing exercises to Zumba workouts. I will mention here that if your building blocks YouTube, you won't be able to use all of the breaks at school, but there are enough other activities to keep your kids moving and engaged.

Your Champ is pretty hilarious...

The more activities you do, the more your Champ grows. When you have maxed out one Champ, you get to pick a new one.

Any need that you could possibly have is covered by one of the brain breaks. Feel like a sing-along? Watch the drama as they sing with "Let It Go", complete with lyrics and a bouncing snowflake! (I think that my own kids have maxed out the Champ with the video alone! See {yesterday's post} about the Elsa capes...)

I feel that GoNoodle does an awesome job of finding brain breaks that are fun for students and focus on topics that are currently popular. Here is another favorite. Gotta love those minions!!

When you have found some that you like, mark them as your favorite so you can easily find them again.

I know that my students really appreciated these brain breaks. They would also be great options during spring when you need to have an indoor recess because it's raining. And this site is 100% free. Click {here} to go sign up for a free account. There is a Common Core-aligned upgrade, but the free version does offer so much!

Let me know which activities are your favorite!

Disclaimer: {GoNoodle} is compensating me for writing this review, but the opinions are 100% mine.

Tried It Tuesday -

I know that I mentioned on my last Five for Friday, but my kids LOVED, and I wanted to share more about it with you.

It is free to sign up, and no email is required. So the first step that I had my students do was to create an account by clicking Register in the upper right hand corner. They had to create a username and password, along with setting a security question, inputting their town, state, and their grade level range.

There are three missions to complete. Mission 1 is about the Revolutionary War, Mission 2 is about escaping slavery, and Mission 3 is about settlers affecting the way of life for the Cheyenne.

Since I wasn't ready to start the Revolutionary War one yet, I had my students attempt to escape slavery since we had recently discussed slaves and indentured servants in the southern colonies.

There are five parts to the mission. You have to make the right decisions to unlock the next part.

Of course, there were plenty that clicked through and made poor choices on purpose, trying to be silly and typical fifth graders, but then (to their surprise) they died or were captured. Back to square one. When they realized that they had to do it all over again, they made much better choices. Even so, they weren't always successful. They did some collaboration with the person at the computer next to them so they wouldn't make the same mistakes. The kids were engaged the entire 45 minutes and I think that the farthest anyone got was Part 2. Some asked me if they could work on the mission at home, and of course I said yes :) I overheard many of them say that they really enjoyed doing this, which was awesome to hear because everyone experienced a setback at some point during the simulation.

If you teach any of these three topics, I highly recommend this website as an engaging way to discover what it was like during that time period, how to prioritize, and seeing cause and effect relationships. Plus, it's free!