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Math learned best when children move

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Children improve at math when instruction engages their own bodies. This is one of the findings from a recent study coming from the University of Copenhagen’s Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports. The results also document that children require individualized learning strategies. Well-being and learning among school age children has a significant impact on how children fare later on in life. Therefore, frameworks for elementary school teaching and learning must be optimized. The 2014 Danish School Reform emphasized physical activity during the primary and lower secondary education years – as apart of academic instruction as well. Researchers from the Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports have investigated the effect of different types of primary school mathematics instruction.”(more)

The government says kids need an hour of movement a day. Actually, they need a lot more.

The Washington Post – Valerie Strauss/Angela Hanscom

“Movement equals health is one of those equations as indisputable as the sun equals light. But there are two important variables that rarely factor into this formula: the type of movement and how much. For children, it’s a lot more than you think. The U.S. government’s recommendation of 60 minutes of vigorous movement a day for children, combined with healthy eating, is great for decreasing the risks of obesity and heart disease, among other chronic diseases. But children today have symptoms of other alarming problems, such as weaker bones and muscles, emotional instability and anxiety, surprising episodes of aggression, the inability to focus and pay attention, and problems “sitting still” compared to children of just two decades ago. Know what helps with all of these? Movement. And a lot of it!…Children need at least three hours of outdoor play on a daily basis in order to foster healthy sensory and motor development. Children need opportunities to go upside down, climb trees, run as fast as they can, use their imagination, test their strength, care for each other’s scraped knees, roll, climb, balance and even spin in circles. All of these activities use their brain, activate their muscles both big and small, and engage the senses. This lays the foundation for being able to pay attention, listen and learn in a classroom setting.”(more)