This week it seemed necessary to ignore the cold and wet weather outside and imagine ourselves in the in sunnier places. To inspire the class I set design materials of terra-cotta pots and chopsticks on the carpet. The idea was to build a village of houses and use this as a starting point for the class.
Depending on the age of the students we stamped on the ground to flatten the area creating a pattern of stamps, jumps and turns, adding straight and round shapes with arms, gathered imaginary fruit and vegetables from the forest with much stretching, placed potatoes on a camp fire (red scarves and chopstick with balls for potatoes), danced around the fire whilst the potatoes were "cooking" before taking them from the fire for a hot potato dance. Red, orange and yellow scarves were flames from the fire so dancers leapt, spun, twisted and turned through the room throwing the scarves and catching them. To cool down I said there was a river nearby with hippos slipping and rolling in the mud. This week they rolled out the door rather than jumping. Great fun!
The designs were fascinating and used a lot of balance which was explored in some groups. I am always looking for interesting and simple counter balances. If you have any ideas I would be very interested to hear from you.