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P.E. Central Lesson Plan: Video Game Treasure Hunt
Purpose of Activity:
To help students creatively and safely move through general space, developing their own locomotor movements.
Suggested Grade Level:
Materials Needed:
Background music (optional) and a drum; tambourine; or other stop command;
Lesson Plan:
Description of Idea

Before beginning the activity, talk with the students about video games. What are their favorites? What do almost all video games have in common? (They have a main character [hero or heroine] who must complete a task against opposition.) Discuss what types of opposition there are -- rivers, booby-trapped rooms, oil spills, etc.

Let students know that today they will be moving in their very own live video game. They will be the main character/hero or heroine of their choice and they will have to accomplish their task, which they also get to decide (examples: finding lost or stolen treasure, saving the princess/finding the prince, or rescuing your teacher from aliens). But there is also opposition. Explain that to get to the princess or treasure, you must first pass through dangerous, booby-trapped rooms...and in the last one they will find their treasure or success! Explain that they will start on one side of the gym, and you will tell them what kind of room they are encountering. At the "go" signal, they will have to decide how to move safely across that room. When the drum signals stop, they will have to drop to the floor and freeze to see what the next room holds! Remind them that their way of moving may be different from someone else's, but that's ok, because every hero or heroine has their own way of doing things. Also, how long it takes them to get across the room is not important -- what is important is moving their best in that room, because if they don't, they can't make it across!

Give students a moment to think of what their own task will be, without telling anyone. When they have their task in their head, they are to line up on the sideline of the gym (point to line), having some space between them and their neighbors. When all students have a space, give them their challenge and give the "go" signal. Once most students have made it across the space (either all the way if the space is small, or partway, if it is large), give the "freeze" signal (students drop and freeze in an "action" shape), getting ready to go through the next room (if space is small, have students turn and go back the way they came).

Examples of challenges can be:

The room is full of water (students begin "swimming"); after a moment, tell them that sharks are after them! (Oh no! Swim faster!).

Room is filled with oil (slippery; slithery)

Cave filled with low ceilings (crawl or scoot)

Room filled with peanut butter (sticky situation)

Room with sleeping giant (tip toe quietly)

Over grown vines all over the room (reach and "swing")

The room is a maze (make sharp turns)

Cold room

Hot room

Spinning room

Room where they turn into robots

Nails on the floor

Room full of jello

As students move through the rooms, observe to see that they are indeed moving in the fashion which that room requires (for example, moving quietly in the "giant's" room; really reaching in the "vines" room). If necessary, have students freeze and pinpoint a few (not just one) students to demonstrate how they were moving in that room. Encourage students to think about how it would feel to move through jello, for would one's arms...legs...body move through it? It may be helpful talking students through the different rooms in the beginning, in order for them to really get the "feeling" of each challenge.

Once students have reached the end of the road, have them move (using the same movement, or perhaps running or skipping, for example) double time back through the rooms to get back out (call out the rooms they went through from the end backwards to the beginning; at each new room, they have to turn and go the other direction). Begin again, adding any new challenges or ideas in each room that come to mind! (Students can also be encouraged to think up new rooms/challenges!)

Assessment Ideas:

Teacher Observation: During the activity, observe each student to see if he/she is using a movement appropriate to each room.

Student Learning: Have students draw themself/their character moving through their favorite room. Have them give them/their character a name, label what room it was, and how they moved through it. This is a good follow-up activity for the classroom. Post them on a bulletin board when done!
Brenda Rowan. Posted on PEC: 6/7/2001.
This lesson plan was provided courtesy of P.E. Central (
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