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VERB. It’s What You Do. Native Style

English, adapted for American Indian audience (PDF - 420K)

Look for ideas to integrate activity and movement into your everyday lesson plans. It makes learning more fun, and will grab students’ attention. Try these fun ideas to get you started. They can be adapted across multiple areas of the curricula.

Go Fly A Kite
Teach your students about gravity, aerodynamics, and wind by making and flying a kite. Visit the Australian Kite Association at* for more information on lesson links and instructions.

Energize Yourself
Convey the difference between Potential Energy and Kinetic Energy by giving students directives, such as march in place, take five steps forward, etc.

Give students, or groups of students, a verb such as twist, run, fly or groove, and ask them to list and demonstrate all of the activities and games that come to mind.

Ask each student to write his or her first name vertically down the page. For each letter, ask them to write a verb that relates to them.

Geography Movement
Give each group of students a region of the United States. For each state in their region, they should list the kinds of activities that can be done given the state’s topography, climate, location, etc. As a class, discuss what the students came up with. For example: In how many states can you ski? Go swimming in the ocean? Take a dip in a lake?

Freeze Facts1
Make index cards with questions and answers to any topic you are studying. Now, play frozen. In order to be released, they must answer a question asked by any tagger correctly. Switch the taggers every couple of minutes to give everyone a turn.

1 Adapeted from activity on PE Central,*

Media Literacy
Have children count how many media messages (TV, radio, billboards, magazines, etc.) that they see in one day encouraging inactivity (promoting video games, marathon blocks of a TV show, etc.) compared to how many they see encouraging activity.

Some Resources

Teacher and Professional Sites****

Parent Sites*****

Student Sites**

VERB. While You Learn.
Integrate activity and movement into your everyday lesson plans.
This handout includes ideas to be adapted across multiple curricula.

VERB. Why you do it.

Background and Objective

This lesson focuses on the benefits of participating in physical activities such as sports and dance. Physical activities can be individual or in a club, group or on a team. This first lesson serves as a motivator for kids to get active. Some reasons for them to be active are:

  • it is fun
  • they can spend time with friends, family and neighbors
  • they might discover a hidden talent or skill, or find something that they really love to do
  • activities are a way to express themselves and communicate what they like to do


Review with your class the reasons for getting active. Brainstorm what they do that is active and fun, who they do it with, what new things they have discovered that they like doing and how these things express who they are and what interests they have.

Note: Competitive activities aren’t for everyone — as a matter of fact, competition can take the fun out of being active. Try to encourage a full range of activities so all children can have fun.

Encourage your students to get active — get their bodies and their minds moving. Children should spend at least 60 minutes a day, at least five days a week, participating in a variety of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity individually, with friends or in an organized group. They should also consider participating in organized (or prosocial) activities such as painting, volunteering, playing in a marching band or singing. Organized activities will help them build alliances with family, organized peer groups and conventional institutions and will help to displace unhealthy, risky behavior.

Note: Be supportive of your students’ efforts to get moving. If they find enjoyment from being active, it is more likely that they will incorporate activity into their lifestyle for the long-term.

What's your VERB?

Background and Objective

This lesson helps students develop a plan to discuss their VERBs. It entails

  • setting a goal
  • doing the activity
  • keeping track of when they are active and the activities they try
  • mixing it up to keep things new and exciting
  • rewarding themselves for their efforts


After discussing activity as a class, talk about each student’s plan for getting active. Ask your students their main reasons for being active. How do they plan on reaching their goals? For example, if their goal is to do more things with their peers, they might join a local soccer team or take an after-school dance class. Remind students that being active and finding their VERB doesn’t necessarily mean joining a sports team or paying to use an ice skating rink. Being active is about getting up and doing something fun — it can be as simple as volunteering, helping to clean up a park, taking a walk or jog with a parent, or dancing in the living room with a friend.

Divide your students into groups and give each group some equipment (i.e., a basketball and 10 cones, a Frisbee and a hula hoop, a football and two jump ropes, etc.). Ask students to develop a game using all of their equipment. Have groups demonstrate their games for the class.

Note: Students with disabilities can also be active. Recognize his/her physical abilities and be creative. Visit* or* for more information.

VERB. Where you do it.

Background and Objective

This activity asks students to find information about where they can do the VERBs they like to do.


Students should look for community events and local organizations, including team sports, volunteer organizations, religious groups and after-school programs in their neighborhood. Give them time in class to find this information. Provide students access to conduct this research, such as the Internet, phone books, local newspapers and the library.

After students have compiled their research, discuss the information as a class so that as many local organizations and facilities as possible are talked about and explored.

Note: Consider inviting a representative from a local organization, such as Boys & Girls Clubs, YMCA, or Parks & Recreation, to talk to the class about activity options, and/or demonstrate activities in which students showed an interest.

VERB. It's what I do.

Background and Objective

This activity will give your students the opportunity to think about the things they like to do and write about them.


Ask your students to list activities they like to do, new things that they’ve tried recently, new things they’d like to try and five active things that they’ve done this week. This activity page can serve as a template that can be used multiple times, so the students are constantly encouraged to try new things and keep active throughout the week.

You can also have students make their own VERB poster. Ask them to cut out magazine and newspaper clippings of their favorite ways to get active. Tell them to use verbs, or action words, associated with those activities to create a poster encouraging other people to get active. Display the posters in the hallways, gym and cafeteria.

Ask students to keep a journal of their activity. Hold weekly discussions on how many times a week your students are active, what new positive activities they are trying, where they are going to be active, etc. When a student mentions a new activity or location, ask him or her to write about it on a large index card and then decorate the card. Post these on a bulletin board as a reminder of all the possible activities that are out there for them to try. Make a class chart, or have each student make their own chart, to keep track of how many times a week each student is active.

Rewards for being active can include:

  • Select from one of the activities brainstormed in the What’s Your VERB activity to try as a class on the playground.
  • Play a card game or board game after students are done with their schoolwork.
  • Present the class’ favorite activity to a younger grade, and tell them why it’s fun to get moving.
  • As a group or class, organize an activity at your school’s Field Day or Wellness Day.

To encourage parents to engage their children in positive activities, try these ideas.

Suggest that neighboring parents take turns supervising their children as the play together after school. This helps to keep the kids in a safe environment.

  • Encourage the PTA to form a parent/guardian committee that is responsible for organizing group activities, such as a “walk to the park” night, chalk fest on the pavement, softball game or rollerblading in the school parking lot. Work with your school’s principal so that school property can be open beyond school hours to be available for activities and gatherings organized by this committee.
  • Encourage parents, when feasible, to implement a “Walking School Bus” where parents take turns accompanying children walking to school and “picking up” others as they go. For more information, visit*

Teachers and schools can also incorporate activity into learning.

  • Schedule regular recess and PE classes.
  • Incorporate lessons from New PE, making physical education appropriate for everyone. For more information, visit*.
  • Do not use physical activity as a punishment (doing laps for being late).
  • Do not withhold PE or recess as a punishment.

©2003 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Created by Weekly Reader Corporation.

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