Coordination encompasses a lot of important skills a child should learn – skipping, jumping, balance and body-awareness. By participating in the activities below, your child gets to work on each of those skills.
Magic Blanket Ride
This first activity is super fun to do with little ones. You can do it indoors or outdoors.
Tip: Improving coordination starts at birth. Make everyday activities into fun, coordination building activities. Balance on cracks, jump off curbs, climb trees!
Place masking tape on the ground in a straight line or a curvy line. “Walk” forwards on the line, walk backwards, hop on one foot…all while not “falling off.” Then, jump back and forth over the line on two and then one foot. See how many times you can jump in 20 seconds.
Make a small mark on the ground with a piece of chalk or tape. Jump with two feet on the spot 10 times in a row. Then, alternate landing on your right and left feet on that same mark. This is the first milestone before learning to jump rope. It is fun to do this with music that has a strong beat.
Bean Bag Balance
What this Works On
Accuracy, Balance, Body Awareness, Eye-Hand Coordination
1. Both players balance a beanbag on their head.
2. Each player walks around a designated area (approximately 8’ x 8’), while trying to not to let their beanbags fall off their heads.
3. Players try to get the other players to drop their beanbags. The person whose beanbag stays on their head the longest wins.
Bike Riding – of the best and most rewarding balancing skills a child can learn!
Bike riding is a big part of our family’s life. We started our kids on wheeled vehicles not long after they could walk. We found that “Balance Bikes” are a good place to start. Some kids seem to enjoy them right away while others do not take to them. We let our kids ride them in our house to start because they basically just sat on it and moved slowly. It gave them the opportunity to practice daily and allowed them to build confidence before venturing outside.
Here are some links to our favorite bikes for kids:
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Fun Stuff to Encourage Movement
Here are some additional fun activities that work on strength, coordination and balance.
Tug of War
Wheelbarrow, Crab and Bear Walk Races
What this Works On
Agility, Balance, Body Awareness, Speed
How to Play
Draw a “ladder” on the ground with chalk. Each square should be about 1’ x 1’. Shown below are 4 different ways you can maneuver (running or jumping) through the ladder.
Dribble a basketball, while doing the drills. Toss a tennis ball up in the air and catch the
ball, while doing the drills. Do the drills going backwards. Time yourself with your
stopwatch and race a friend or family member to see who is the fastest!