Kindergarten movement activities

Three students moving and singing in front of a teacher, with the text, "Social distancing singing games"

If you are an elementary music teacher, you know how difficult Kindergarten can be to teach. Kindergarteners can be wiggly, and can have a hard time focusing…and they need to move! If you are looking for fun and engaging movement activities that your Kindergarteners will LOVE and will keep them learning, keep reading! 

Here are five movement activities your Kindergarteners will love:

#1: Follow me

This activity is great for practicing steady beat. Put on any piece with a strong steady beat, and students follow your beat motions. I typically do a beat motion for 8 beats, then move onto another beat motion. For example, I might tap my head for 8 beats, then tap my shoulders for 8 beats, then jump for 8 beats, etc. If students are comfortable with steady beat, you could even have student volunteers lead the beat motions after a bit!

This CD by John Feierabend is a wonderful resource for this activity (note: this is an affiliate link). Here are some other favorites for this activity:

#2: I am walking

I recently learned this song from my friend and colleague Katie Minneci (check out this podcast episode for more information about how she uses it.) Here is the notation:

This is a wonderful song to get Kindergarteners up and moving. You can sing the song several times, and change the lyrics to “running,” “skipping,” “marching,” etc., and then when you sing “beep beep beep,” students have to return to their spots!

#3: Hands like this

This has been a favorite in my room for many years, for K-2. It's perfect for Kindergarten, to get them up and moving, aware of their space, and reinforce the names of body parts–especially for students who are bilingual and learning English. Here is a video showcasing how to play “Hands like this”:

#4: Goldfish by Laurie Berkner

I started using this song last year when I was virtually teaching, so I brought it into the in person music classroom this year, and am SO glad I did! Students had so much fun with it! You can simply project the video onto your white board, or listen to the recording:

Then, students act out the movements they see/ hear, and when the goldfish returns to their rock, students return to their spots.

#5: Bunny game

This is one of my all time favorites…and was created by my Dalcroze professor and I in college. Here is a video showcasing how to play it:

Looking for more Kindergarten ideas? Check out this post with my favorite Kindergarten activities, and this post with tips on teaching Kindergarten music.

Looking for Kindergarten lesson plans? Check out these:

If you'd like to check out the lessons in my website store, click here.

I hope this was helpful to you, as you add Kindergarten movement games and activities to your elementary music lessons. Happy teaching!

2 Responses

  1. Hi Aileen I didn’t know you had a dalcroze background! I studied Dalcroze with Robert Abramson and we did the bunny activity too. Who did you study with?

    1. How cool! I studied with Tim Caldwell at Central Michigan University, who studied with Robert Abramson. 🙂

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