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The Caterpillar's Day

Writer: Julie Cadzow

Years 1-2 Level 1 Duration 1-2 lessons

The students turn into dancing caterpillars. They wriggle, stretch, bend and twist, and create movement from 6 action words to represent the caterpillar's life cycle.

Key Competency

Using Language, Symbols and Texts The students will discuss a diagram/chart of the life cycle of a caterpillar. Through movement exploration, the students will recognise and understand the meanings of six action words (Hatch, Search, Chew, Grow, Weave and Unfold). They will use movement to represent and to communicate the idea of the life cycle of a caterpillar.

Achievement Objectives

Developing Practical Knowledge in Dance (PK): Level 1 Students will explore movement with a developing awareness of the dance elements of body, space, time, energy and relationships

Developing Ideas in Dance (DI): Level 1 Students will improvise and explore movement ideas in response to a variety of stimuli

Communicating and Interpreting in Dance (CI): Level 1 Students will share dance movement through informal presentation and share their thoughts and feelings in response to their own and others' dance

Specific Learning Outcomes

The student will: LO1 Perform selected locomotor and non-locomotor movement on different levels LO2 Create movement using selected action words LO3 Participate in a short class dance about the life cycle of a caterpillar

Key Words

Locomotor movement, Non-locomotor movement, Hatch, Search, Chew, Grow, Weave, Unfold

Resources

Dance Teacher's Tool Kit : Dance Vocabulary - Locomotor, Non- locomotor,  Using the Dance Vocabulary Cards

Chart/diagram of the life cycle of a caterpillar or butterfly

Action Words (RTF 1 KB)

(RTF 26KB)

Tambourine/drum

Music: Kiwi Kidsongs 13

Teaching and Learning Sequence
    1. Class in a group on the floor. Discuss what they know about the life cycle of a caterpillar /butterfly. Look at the life cycle poster and discuss. Show the action words and match them to the appropriate place in the life cycle. Mix the action words up and the students identify each word and arrange in time order.
    2. Lolly Scramble = safe place for each student to work without interference from other students. Gather group into a safe but tight bunch. With the shaking of a tambourine, students move out away from everyone else and sit down. This becomes their Lolly Scramble spot. They may need several rehearsals at this skill and may even need their own dot on the floor (perhaps marked with chalk, a cone or other marker of some sort).
    3. Explore shapes and levels on their spot - tiny, wide, curved, pointy, tall, bent, flat on the floor, balances - on 1 leg, 1 hand and 1 foot etc
      • Pretend your arm is a caterpillar moving along a leaf
      • Make your caterpillar arm reach up high for a bite of a delicious leaf
      • Make your caterpillar arm twist behind you, around you, out to one side, out to the other side
      • Now make it move across the floor
      • Pretend your foot is a caterpillar moving along a leaf
      • How far can your caterpillar foot move to the side
      • Make your arm move like a caterpillar and then your foot
      • Show me how your nose can be a caterpillar!
      Refer to

Dance Vocabulary Cards (RTF 2 MB)

Using the Dance Vocabulary Cards

  1. Locomotor movement (travelling movement) Organise the class into a line and lead the class on a travelling journey:
    • Walk as slowly as you can
    • Walk with 2 caterpillar arms reaching up and down for food
    • A very fast caterpillar
    • A wriggling caterpillar - how many body parts can they wriggle?
    • A giant striding caterpillar
    • A caterpillar who can walk on his/her heels, toes, insides of the feet, outsides of the feet
    • Change direction and follow the last student in the line to be a crawling caterpillar
    • A caterpillar wriggling on his/her stomach
     
  2. Gather the students in a close group again and 'lolly scramble' to a safe spot.
  3. Take students through each action word, relating each word to the appropriate life cycle stage. HATCH: How will you hatch out of your egg? Will you explode, climb, push, leap or slide? What parts of your body are going to move? SEARCH: How does a tiny caterpillar move? What body parts do you need to use? How do you climb up a delicious leaf? Show me how you can crawl on your stomach? CHEW: You have found a delicious cabbage leaf. How are you going to eat it? Where do you start? Pretend your arm is a caterpillar. Show me how your arm can chew. GROW: You have eaten lots of cabbage leaves and have begun to grow into a big caterpillar. Start in a small caterpillar shape and slowly stretch out/up/along into a bigger caterpillar shape. Now move out in your favourite caterpillar way to make a big circle of huge caterpillars WEAVE: Discuss safety and ensure that the students are aware of each other. By walking on lots of curves and circles, show me how you can move around the room weaving your chrysalis. Lets make one big class cocoon. Organise class to make one big circle. (This may take some practice) UNFOLD: We are going to open out into a whole class of butterflies. Take class through opening out of torso, arms and legs. Children move around the room as butterflies and fly back to their 'Lolly scramble spot'
  4. Review the life cycle and the favourite moves the children made for each action word.
  5. Repeat the entire life cycle as a 'dance' with narration from the teacher. Suggested music: Kiwi Kidsongs 13 - Seasons, Track 13 (instrumental version) Class discussion: What was your favourite part? What was the hardest way of moving that you tried? What was it like being in one big cocoon?
Assessing the Learning

Teacher observation of movement exploration The Learning Outcomes

The Caterpillar's DayName_____________ Beginning Achieved Developed
PK: Perform selected locomotor and non-locomotor movement on different levels      
DI: Create movement using selected action words      
CI: Participate in a short class dance about the life cycle of a caterpillar      
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