Cones to delineate teaching area and finish line funnel
Map of cross-country course
Music for Four Corners Movement
Cageball and 12-15 foam rubber balls
The student will:
Participate in Loose Caboose demonstrating agility, speed, cooperative skills and following the instructions described by the instructor.
Participate in Four Corners to improve aerobic endurance, strength, muscular endurance, and flexibility during the Fitness section of class.
Demonstrate Cross Country Running/Walking skills using form demonstrated by the instructor.
Participate in Cageball Target Throw demonstrating cooperative skills and throwing skills.
NATIONAL STANDARDS: 1-5
Introductory Activity (2-3 Minutes)
All students are hooked together in groups of two or three by having the rear person put their hands on the shoulders of the person in front of him or her. The teacher picks several students to move without a partner. These students are called the loose cabooses. The loose cabooses try to hook on with another set of students by grabbing the waist of the rear student. When this happens, the front student is now loose and attempts to hook on with another pair of students.
Stop the activity after 15-20 seconds and pick new loose cabooses.
Vary the means of locomotion for the students.
A caboose is a manned vehicle/car at the end of a freight train. Although cabooses were once used on nearly every freight train in North America, their use has declined and today they are seldom seen on trains, except on locals and smaller railroads.
Fitness Development (8-12 Minutes)
Four Corners Movement
A large rectangle is formed using four cones as markers. Students move continually around the perimeter of the rectangle. At each corner, a different movement is performed. Examples of activity alternatives that can be performed on the long sides of the rectangle are jogging, power skipping, sliding, jumping, and hopping. On the short sides of the rectangle, movements requiring slower, more concentrated attention (for example, lunges and inchworms) can be performed.
Follow aerobic work with stretching activities such as Lower leg stretch; Balance beam stretch; Groin stretch; Cross-legged stretch; twisting; Standing hip bend, etc.
An interesting variation is to set up tumbling activities or tires and challenge students to go over, around, and through them. The need for continuous movement should be emphasized, and the rectangle should be large enough to provide a challenging workload for the cardiorespiratory system.
Use signs on cones that list the exercises, stretching, and aerobic activities students are to perform as they pass a cone. Place 2-3 activities on each cone so students have some choices of activities to do.
These exercises utilize your whole body including what are called your “core muscles.” Core muscles refer to your abdominal muscle and your back area/ postural muscles. Keep core muscles strong helps in daily life and helps to prevent injuries.
Lesson Focus (15-20 Minutes)
Cross-country courses can be marked with a chalk line and cones so that runners follow the course as outlined. Checkpoints every 220 yards offer runners a convenient reference point so that they can gauge accurately how far they have run. Three courses of differing lengths and difficulty can be laid out. The beginning course can be 1 mile in length, the intermediate 1.25 miles, and the advanced 1.5 miles. Including sandy or hilly areas in the course increases the challenge. When students run cross-country, they can select the course that challenges them appropriately. It is entirely appropriate to select a fast-paced walk if students judge themselves unable to run the entire distance.
Discuss the sport of cross-country running and how it is scored.
Seven members to a team.
Lowest score wins.
Total points for each team based on places finished in race.
Divide the class into equal teams by recording times for all members of the class regardless of whether they walked or ran. Create teams of equal ability by dividing students to that the total elapsed time (for all team members) is equal.
Depending on the ability of students, teams can run different length courses. The following lengths are suggested:
Explain how to “warm down” after each course run.
The attractiveness of cross-country competition lies in the fact that it is a team activity, and all members of the team are crucial to its success. Youngsters should learn how to score a meet. Probably the easiest way to keep team scores is to assign seven (depending on class size) members to each team. Points are assigned to finishers based on their placement in the race. For example, the first-place runner receives 1 point, the tenth-place runner 10 points, and so on. The points for all team members are totaled, and the team with the lowest score is declared the winner.
A funnel made of cones at the finish line prevents tying times. As runners go through the funnel, the meet judges and helpers can hand each one a marker with the place of finish on it. This simplifies scoring at the end of the meet. Each team captain can total the scores and report the result.
Closing Activity (5 Minutes)
Cageball Target Throw
An area about 20 ft wide is marked across the center of the playing area, with a cageball in the center. The object of the game is to throw the foam balls against the cageball, thus forcing it across the line in front of the other team. Players may come up to the line to throw, but they may not throw while inside the cageball area. A player may enter the area, however, to recover a ball. No one is to touch the cageball at any time, nor may the cageball be pushed with a ball in the hands of a player. If the cageball rolls into a player, a point is awarded to the other team and play starts over. If the cageball seems to roll too easily, it should be deflated slightly.
Evaluation/Review and Cheer
What is a caboose? What are core muscles? How was jogging the course today versus yesterday? Were you any faster today? What area of fitness does jogging improve?