"It’s OK to be a Cheap Skate!" by Pete Charrette

Avast, me landlubbers…are you looking for a FUN and INEXPENSIVE Holiday PE activity that your elementary students will absolutely LOVE?Well open up this Pirate Scroll and let me show you she's it's done!!

Many trips around the sea ago, a veteran teacher, Susan Clonts, showed me an activity in which the students skated around our gym using half sheets of paper under their tennis shoes. We had a carpeted gym back then and the ½ sheet paper skates worked great and the best thing was, when we were finished the activity for the day, we would just throw out the paper and do it all over again the next day. It was “throw-away” paper from our school office so it was free, fun and the kids loved it.

Since those “way back” plundering days, I have now graduated to using Laminated Paper Plates which words FANTASTIC since my gym floor is Sport Court and works great with the laminated plates. I have been using the same plates for at least the last 5 years and if they start to look a little “weary” (like me), I just throw them out and laminate a few more. The laminated Paper Plates are cheap, efficient and are a BLAST!!

I like to use the Paper Plate Skate activity during the weeks leading up to our Winter Holiday and I call it Santa’s Village Skating Rink. I have decorated the gym in the past to add excitement to our daily classes; as if they need more excitement at this time of the year! You can also set the mood by turning out the gym lights and using low lighting or disco balls to bring a real roller or ice skating rink feel. Also, make sure you play some Holiday music to really make it an authentic experience for your students.

For a basic set up, place 4 cones around the perimeter of a playing area with room for students to skate around the outside. You will need to laminated plates for every student. The students go around the perimeter of the gym, sliding on their Paper Plate Laminate Skates and can perform the following teacher-directed actions:

  • Skate Forward

  • Skate Backward

  • Skate Sideways

  • Grapevine Slide

  • Snowboard Push (1 plate on ground, one in their hand)

  • Cross country Ski Style- with or without ski poles (could use noodles as poles)

  • On Hands- pushing with feet- they must look up however

  • Partner, trio or quad skate holding hands- Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade

  • Chain Skating (one in front of the other- holding at the hips)

  • Moonwalk Backwards

  • Dance Skate

  • Figure Skate (twirl and jump)

  • Play “Wipeout” – students get down on their stomachs when the music stops and back skating when it starts back up

Change the skating movement often (every 1-3 min.)

Click the image below to download a FREE Activity Plan for Santa's Village Skating Rink!!

Don’t forget to play Holiday music and switch actions after or during each Christmas song. Stop in the middle of the lesson and do a class line/group dance such as the “Cha Cha Slide” or the “Chicken Dance” as they might do at a typical Roller or Skating Rink.

Argee, PE Matees, ….Here our way divides...till the next time....

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