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Lesson Plans

Creative Pantomime

  • Lesson Plan Creator: Linda C. Smith
  • Grades: Kindergarten, Grade 1, Grade 2
  • Subjects: P.E.
  • Part of Class: Creative Movement
  • National/State Fine Arts Standards: Create, Perform/Present, Connect, Respond

This lesson plan relates to the Gestures Dance in Fin Amour. Expand your movement vocabulary by abstracting literal "pedestrian" actions.

Learning Objectives/Goals

Students will learn to abstract movement by using pedestrian movements and manipulating them to create something new.

Materials Needed

An open space and music or a drum.


Class goals and expectations, space boundaries


What is a gesture?  What is pantomime?  Have students show you a gesture, like waving or shrugging their shoulders.  Then have them pantomime doing an activity like opening a door or brushing their teeth.  Have them come up with some too. These movements are very literal.


Not to explore abstraction.  Take the same gestures and pantomimes from the warm-up and ask the students to change things a bit.  For example, instead of waving with your hand, could you wave with your elbow?  Could you wave with your foot?  Could you open the door with your shoulder?  Could you write you name in the air with your nose?  Lots of different ways to make the movement different or abstract it.  Could you brush your teeth as big as you possibly can, taking up all the space from the floor to as high as you can reach?


In partners, have students choose a task to abstract.  Have them show the task first as a literal movement, then have them create a way to abstract the task. 


As students show their abstractions, have the students who are watching guess what the tasks were.

Extension to the Lesson

Add Levels, Directions and different speeds to the abstraction to make them even more creative and unique.

Follow Up Resources

Dance to Learn Video Lessons

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What People are Saying

The diversity of the dancers really spoke to my students! It was great to see boys and girls dancing, and different races. The high level of engagement was so refreshing and got students excited about thecontent.
This activity was valuable because it helped students make connections between dance, rhythm, healthy lifestyles, and expression. The students were impressed by the talent of the dancers and it was motivating to them.
Opportunities for art and expression are so limited at school but so essential and valuable for all students, especially those who struggle to learn through traditional methods. My Kindergarteners have been dancing since you left!
This was so engaging. I looked around the auditorium and every student was watching. Not one person was talking or distracted
This activity is valuable to teachers and students because it gives them a creative outlet. We need movement in the classroom to engage, energize and deepen student learning.
I got great ideas on how to incorporate movement into math and science lessons.
I loved how you made movement and exercise relatable to the students. The dancers were full of energy and there was very little down time so students stayed engaged.
Our children were captivated by the performance. They listened to you and they were learning without knowing. They usually giggle when bodies are shown and talked about. But the way you presented it was so tastefully done, they now do poses and movement around the room and outside. You brokesome barriers and they took that permission and literally ran with it!