Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Toe Tapping Energizing Brain Break

Toe Tapping

1. Stand Up.
2. Face your partner.
3. Both you and your partner put out your right leg and tap your right feet together 1 time and say "1" out loud.
4. Tap your left feet together 3 times and say "3" out loud.
5. Tap your right feet together 2 times and say "2" out loud.
6. Continue the 1,3,2 toe tapping pattern alternating feet.
7. See how fast you can go.

Goto http://www.energizingbrainbreaks.com/ to get the book.

WHAT ARE ENERGIZING BRAIN BREAKS? Energizing Brain Breaks are quick 1-2 minute activities for your classroom. They take virtually no preparation and no extra materials to perform. Students of all ages love them. Why do they love them? Because they are fun and make you laugh. They also challenge your brain. Energizing Brain Breaks help you to cross the mid-line of your body which helps both sides of your brain engage. It is suggested to use an Energizing Brain Break every 30 minutes with your class. They are terrific during exams and standardized tests. Just give an Energizing Brain Break between sections of tests or even right in the middle of the test. If you would like to see some in action, go to www.energizingbrainbreaks.com. The Energizing Brain Breaks book is laminated; spiral bound, and has 50 activities on card stock paper. The ISBN number is 978-0-578-05058-4 and is a $14.95 value.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

ABC/123 Energizng Brain Break

One of my students gave me this one yesterday. I really like it.
1. Stand Up

2. Use your index finger and write a large "A" in the air out in front of you and at the same time say out loud the number "1".

3. Now use your index finger and write a large "B" in the air out in front of you and at the same time say out loud the number "2".

4. Continue writing the letters in the air and saying the numbers out loud as far as you can go or until the end of the alphabet.

Extra Challenge: Alternate saying the letter and then the number.

I had a few students get to Z and were at the number 24 or 25. This is a problem since there are 26 letters in the alphabet. It was probably about a quarter of my students were able to get all the way through in the 1 minute activity. For another challenge, have them write the letters in the air with their weak hand. This idea is from Aaron Rowe.

To find more Energizing Brain Breaks go to http://www.energizingbrainbreaks.com/

There is a book and DVD available with 50 Brian Breaks.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Energizing Brain Breaks DVD is HERE!

Each DVD comes in a shrinkwrapped protective DVD case.

Energizing Brain Breaks DVD is a collection of 50 quick activities that you can see in action. The DVD has videos that match the book "Energizing Brain Breaks" page for page. They are 1-2 minute brain and body challenges that are fun and help you regain your efficiency. The collection includes individual, partner and group activities. Both the book and the DVD have sample pages at the site

What are Energizing Brain Breaks?

Purchasing the Book/DVD

Sample Pages from the Book

Sample Videos from the DVD

Multiple Book/DVD Ordering

You can get the book alone, or with the DVD. If you get both the DVD and the book the price is reduced.

If you have a large order for a school or an organization, then you can go to our multiple order page to check out the possibilities. If you have any questions please email energizingbrainbreaks@gmail.com

Monday, September 13, 2010

Energizing Brain Break Crab

I got this idea from Tony Schlorff who got the idea from the good folks in El Paso Texas. Thanks for passing this one along.

I call it the Crab. This is an individual Brain Break

1. Stand Up
2. Put your arms out in front of you and match your fingers from each hand together and then match your thumbs together.
3. Now put lower your middle fingers so that the knuckles touch. Keep them flat against each other.
4. Now un-touch and retouch your thumbs.
5. Now un-touch and retouch your index fingers.
6. Now un-touch and retouch your ring fingers.
7. Lastly, un-touch and retouch your pinkies.
Good luck. This one was difficult.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Gotcha Energizing Brain Break


Purpose: Try to grab another person’s finger on one side of you, while at the same time avoid being grabbed by the person on the other side of you.

1. Stand up and get into groups of 3-10 people.
2. Form a circle with your group.

3. Each person should hold out their left hand with their palm flat and facing up. Now take your right hand index finger and point it directly into the palm of the person to your right.

4. When the instructor says “Gotcha”, you are to try to grab the person’s finger that is in your palm, and at the same time avoid being grabbed by the person you are pointing to.

5. Repeat with your arms crossed.

Monday, August 9, 2010

ITSY BITSY SPIDER Energizing Brain Break for Students

ITSY BITSY SPIDER Energizing Brain Break for Students

You know the old rhyme that goes "The itsy bitsy spider went up the water spout..."

1. Stand up.
2. Put your hands out in front of you.
3. Take your right hand thumb and touch it to your left hand index finger.
4. Now take your right hand index finger and touch it to your left hand thumb.
5. Rotate both hands to move upward so that you can now reach your right hand thumb to your left hand index finger. Then keep rotating your fingers and thumbs so that you are "walking up the water spout"
6. Now do this behind your back. Try going "down the spout" as well.
7. Once you've mastered this, then do the same process with your index finger and your pinkie. This is tough.

I have not done this one yet with my students, so once I have, I will video-tape it and post it.
There is a Brain Break Book available. It has 50 activities that incorporate movement, crossing the mid-line, and brain challenges. Click here for more information. Also, 50% of the profits from this book go to great causes like building schools in Angola or also giving away books to underprivileged schools.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Energizing Brain Breaks Book Give Away

Sorry, all of the entries have been made. This offer is over. If you are interested in the book, you will need to order it through the on the side of this page.

Energizing Brain Breaks Book Give Away ends after the first 10 valid entries. All 10 entries have been made. These will go fast, get your entry in soon. (sorry, only entries delivered to US or Canada will be accepted)

Do you know of an administrator that is interested in brain breaks? Maybe it is your principal or your wellness advisor, or it might even be a superintendent. Then you could get two free complimentary copies of the book "Energizing Brain Breaks" sent directly to you. The first copy you would keep for yourself. (If you already have one of the books, then you could give it to a colleague) The second copy you would take personally to your administrator and share it with them. Be sure to tell them about the blog http://brainbreaks.blogspot.com/ with video examples of many of the 50 Activities.
Whole schools (and even a whole district) have been getting the "Energizing Brain Break" book for their teachers. Teachers love this book because there is No Prep Time and No Extra Set Up and yet it is so valuable. Students from K-12 are benefiting from taking a small 1-2 minute break in the middle of a class to get refocused and refreshed.

Once an administrator sees the book it will make a big impression. Please send an email to energizingbrainbreaksbook@gmail.com Here is what you need to include in your email to get the free books. Please be sure to fill out each question so it will be a valid entry. Only the first 10 valid entries will be sent the books.

1. Your name and address (where you want the books to be sent)

2. Your position. (grade and school)

3. Where did you hear about "Energizing Brain Breaks" book?

4. Why do you believe in Brain Breaks in the classroom.

5. Your administrators name, position, address and email.

6. Describe how you know this administrator and why you think this administrator would like to get invested in "Energizing Brain Breaks"

Take advantage of this as soon as you can!

Questions? Email energizingbrainbreaksbook@gmail.com

Friday, July 9, 2010

Finding the Energizing Brain Breaks Book

There are a few places to get the Energizing Brain Book.
1. Of course you can just click on the BUY NOW button at the top left portion of the blog http://brainbreaks.blogspot.com/ . If you are ordering more than 20 books see item #5 below for better pricing.

2. Also, you can buy the book at Marbles: The Brain Store located in Naperville IL or Chicago IL. If you haven't been to the Marbles store yet, you are in for a treat. It is so fun. It is a great place to pick up gifts for loved ones.

3. They are also available at Jean Blaydes Madigan's Action Based Learning Site.

4. PE4Life.org is an excellent place for resources. Their mission is to keep kids moving and learning. Click here to go to their resource page. The book is now available at PE4life.

5. For multiple order copies or a Purchase Order information, please email energizingbrainbreaksbook@gmail.com Schools and School Districts are welcome! Remember the more you purchase, the better the price.
1-14 books $14.95 each
15-49 books $13.95 each
50-99 books $12.95 each
100+ books $11.95 each

Monday, July 5, 2010

Movement and Learning = Jean Blaydes Madigan

Movement and Learning are equivalent to Jean Blaydes Madigan. If you haven't been to her website, you are in for a treat. Just go to Action Based Learning for an outstanding resource. She does workshops and teacher training. Her website is full of excellent resources. I have her book "Thinking on Your Feet". She is the heart and soul of getting students to move in the classroom. When she came to Naperville Central High School a few years back, she changed our world. She introduced us to Brain Breaks. Since then, we have really taken off on the idea of taking Brain Breaks in the classroom. They serve a few excellent purposes. First, they get the students out of their seats. Second, they usually get the students to cross the mid-line of their body which helps both sides of their brain to engage. Thirdly, they are fun challenges which students usually are smiling and laughing with. This is a an excellent thing to happen in your classroom. Unbelievably, student settle down very fast after a Brain Break. I think it is because they had some built up tension that has been released. They are ready to get back to work.

So Jean Blaydes inspired me to write a book of Brain Breaks called Energizing Brain Breaks. She has given her blessing to me by letting me use a couple of her activities. There are 50 activities in all. The other activities have come from my own work with Brain Breaks and many others have come from colleagues. Here is what Jean Blaydes Madigan has to say about the book:

"Energizing Brain Breaks is an excellent resource for quick simple challenging activities that students can do to activate their brain for more optimal learning. Many of the activities were developed by students and for students and really engage the adolescent brain. This is the resource that teachers need to get their students moving in learning."
Jean Blaydes Madigan

Teachers from all around the country are very excited about this book. Whole school districts are buying the book for all their teachers (900 books to one district) Whole schools are buying the book for their teachers. Books are going out to schools in Alaska, Hawaii, Canada, Denmark, and all over the continental USA. If you know of an administrator or wellness director that would be interested in this book please their send their email address to energizingbrainbreaksbook@gmail.com for more information. If you are interested in purchasing the book please click below. If you are interested in knowing the prices for orders of 20 or more books just email energizingbrainbreaksbook@blogspot.com .

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Blink Brain Break

Tom DeRosa has a blog that is titled "I Want to Teach Forever" He had his readers send in ideas for Brain Breaks. If you haven't checked out his blog please do. It is wonderful. One of the ideas that was sent in was called BLINK. It was submitted by Molly Tanner and I did in class and it is very fun. This brain break takes just 45 seconds to do, and the students love it. Watch the video and you will get a feel for how the students like this one.

Sent in by Molly Tanner
1. Stand Up.
2. Blink your left eye and snap your right hand finger and thumb at the same time.
3. Now blink your right eye and snap your left hand finger and thumb at the same time.
4. Go back and forth as fast as you can

Sunday, April 18, 2010

ABC WORLD REPORT: Excercise in School Leads to Learning

ABC news did a great report on Naperville Central this week. It is so exciting to see the news agencies seeing that movement and learning go hand in hand.
Here is the link: http://abcnews.go.com/WN/exercise-school-leads-learning/story?id=10371315 I'm most proud that people are recognizing the obvious. It is better to have students moving around during a class than sitting down all period (day) long.

I don't know about you, but when I transitioned from elementary school to junior high school and lost my recess time, I had a hard time. My body just about went crazy. Everyone just told me I would grow out of it. Well I haven't. I still need to move in my classes.

Mostly I NEED THE BREAK! That is why I have incorporated Brain Breaks every 30 minutes. So if you are brave, check out one of the videos in this blog like, Thumb and Pinkie, Different Arm Directions , Rocks paper scissors MATH, or Slap Count. Try the Brain Break in your classes. Let me know what you think? Do your students seem more refreshed after the Brain Break? I bet your students will ask for a Brain Break the very next day, because they see how energizing a simple one minute break can be.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

2 Free "Energizing Brain Breaks" Books to be Given Away

Please spread the word.
Tom DeRosa (www.teachforever.com )is giving away 2 free copies of the Energizing Brain Breaks book to people who give a possible “Brain Break” If you have an idea for a Brain Break, then I would recommend you head over to his site and submit an idea. Hurry, you have until Sunday April 18th to submit it. He will judge the best entry and send out a free copy of "Energizing Brain Breaks" to you. Good Luck and Thanks Tom.
You also should check out his site and his blog. I have used it several times lately and it is excellent. See my blog entry at "Teaching High School Math".


Monday, March 15, 2010

The Waiter Brain Break

This brain break will see how agile your arm is. Brain Breaks are refreshing and help to get your productivity back up to par. This brain break is from a colleague Randy Smith. Back in the day Randy was a waiter. He imagines himself with a load of dishes in his hand. Thanks Randy for the idea.
You might want to go straight to the video because it is hard to describe with words.

1. Stand up
2. Lay a piece of paper or a spiral notebook on the top of your right hand without grabbing it.
3. While balancing the spiral on your hand, tuck it between your right arm and waist so that the spiral will now be behind you.
4. Flair your arm out away from you. Again, keep the spiral balanced on top of your hand.
5. Keep turning your arm so that the spiral will get back to the original spot.
6. If you have mastered this, try your other hand.

Many people ask me about getting the students settled after the brain break. This is a no brainer. Sorry about the pun. Just watch in the video how fast the students settle back to work.

This brain break is not in the book. The book actually has 50 activities in it that are similar to this. They challenge the brain and the body for a short period of time. They are excellent for those times in your class where you see your students getting a little glassy eyed. I actually plan for them in my lesson. Click here for more information on the book.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Guns and Roses Brain Break

Brain Breaks are helpful to students and teachers alike. This Brain Break is from my brother in law Gary Gotberg from Grandby CN. It is called Guns and Roses.
1. Stand Up.
2. Make a gun with your right index finger and thumb. Keep your other fingers tucked in.
3. With your left hand put all your fingers straight up. Then move just your index finger to touch your thumb to make a circle "rose".
4. Now switch and make a rose with your right hand and a gun with your left.
5. Keep switching back and forth as fast as you can.
Some of my students can really do this one fast.
For me, I really have to concentrate and I can do it.
This one is not in the book. The book has 50 other brain breaks in it. Click here for more information on the book.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Energizing Brain Breaks Book

Energizing Brain Breaks is a book of 50 quick activities you can do at home, office, school, or anywhere to get refreshed from mental and physical fatigue. Teachers love this book. It is great to have in the classroom for when you want to rejuvenate your students. Why don't you try a couple of the activities in the book. Click here to see a a couple sample activities.

www.energizingbrainbreaks.com for ordering information


The book has a laminated cover with 60 sturdy card stock pages full of colors and pictures with easy to understand directions for each activity. The activities are 1-2 minute brain and body challenges that are fun and help you regain your efficiency. The collection includes individual, partner and group activities. This book is GREAT for teachers or presenters.

The book costs $14.95 plus shipping. Shipping is $3 total for up to 3 books. Shipping is $6 total if you order 4 or 5 books. Shipping is free for 6 or more books ordered. 25% of the profits will go towards building schools in Angola Africa through the organization RISE INTERNATIONAL. Please check out their website. Another 25% of the profits will go towards distributing Energizing Brain Breaks Book to schools and teachers in the U.S. who can't afford to pay for them. If you or your school would like more information on getting books sent to you at no charge please email energizingbrainbreaksbook@gmail.com .
If you have more questions about this book email energizingbrainbreaksbook@gmail.com. If you would like to order multiple copies of this book please email energizingbrainbreaksbook@gmail.com and you will get a discounted price and free shipping.
© 2009 Energizing Brain Breaks All Rights Reserved
ISBN Number 978-0-578-05058-4
Number of pages 60 with laminated covers
Book pages are cardstock with color pictures
Spiral Bound

Preview a few Sample Pages
Preview the Index of Activities

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Elbow to Knee Taps Brain Break

Elbow to Knee Tap Patterns

This is a stretching activity where you will be tapping your elbow to your knee in different patterns.
1. Stand up.
2. Hold your ears with your hands.
Tap your right elbow to your left knee. Tap your left elbow to your right knee.
4. You will be tapping each knee alternately using this pattern: 1, 1, 2. For instance; 1 tap (right elbow to left knee), 1 tap (left elbow to right knee), 2 taps (right elbow to left knee), and then back to 1 tap (left elbow to right knee), 1 tap (right elbow to left knee), 2 taps (left elbow to right knee). Do this as fast as you can.
Idea from Sharon FischerBe creative with your patterns. Use a pattern like 3,1,2 taps

Elbow to Knee Stretch

This is a stretching activity where you will touch your elbow to your knee.
Stand up.
2. Hold your ears with your hands.
3. Tap your right elbow to the top of your left knee. Now touch your left elbow to your right knee. That is one repetition. Do 5 repetitions.
Idea from Sharon FisherBring your left knee up and have your right elbow tap the top of your knee and then tap the side of the same knee. Now do this same thing with the other knee and elbow. Do 5 repetitions.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Finger Tips Brain Break

This Brain Break is usually easier on one side or the other. Try it out and see.

1. Stand up.
2. Make an X with your arms out in front of you. Move your palms to face you with your fingers up in the air. Lock your thumbs together.
3. With your index finger on your right hand, try to touch each of the finger tips of your other hand, one by one.
Now take your middle finger on your right hand and do the same thing and touch the finger tips of your other hand one by one.
5. Do this same process for your ring finger and pinkie on your right hand.
6. Now do the process for your left hand index, middle, ring and pinkie fingers.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Hand Shake #2 Energizing Brain Break

Hand Shake #2

You will be doing a lengthy handshake with your partner.
1. Stand up and find a partner. Decide who is A and who is B.
2. Tap your right elbows together. Tap your left elbows together.
3. Person A: Give a crossing over low side five to your partner with your right hand. (right hand to right hand) Now do a fist bump with your right hand. (A fist bump is making a fist, and lightly touching finger sections that are closest to the wrist) Person B: Give a crossing over low side five to your partner with your left hand and then do a fist bump with your left hand.
4. Bump your right shoulders together. Bump your left shoulders together.
5. Person A: Make an X in the air with your right arm over your left. Person B: Make an X in the air with your left arm over your right. Now while slapping each other’s hands move them together back to their correct side.
6. Now do a double fist bump. (Opposite hands will be touching)
7. Repeat this handshake over and over as fast as you can.