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Active Learning

Written by Nicole Acevedo, a PD Team Member. Prior to joining Team Tierney, Nicole was a 9th & 10th grade English teacher for 13 years in urban schools.

I have always believed that the job of an elementary school teacher is one of the hardest jobs that exist. Besides the many hats they wear, elementary school teachers are shaping students’ opinions about school and the power that comes with learning.

As the rigors of academics continue to increase, students are being forced to sit still and focus on the instruction at hand. While the amount of time students have to move their bodies throughout a school day and release any pent up energy seems to lessen.

Knowing the crucial role that recess has on students' social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development, I was intrigued when I was introduced to a tool that reinforces learning, is fun, and incorporates physical activity as an all-in-one solution: Ladies and Gentlemen (horns blaring) I introduce to you, Active Floor.

As its name states, Active Floor is an interactive floor that features auditive, visual, and kinetic learning. Through learning games, students can learn about math, language arts, and science while incorporating physical activity, collaboration, and communication. Active Floor comes in an installation box with a projector, a computer, and a camera that tracks movement. Using the white vinyl floor, the projector displays various pre-created interactive games that students select by using their feet. What makes this tool powerful is that in addition to the pre-created content, teachers can create and tailor content using the Active Floor Online Platform. With one push of a button, a teacher can deliver their content to the floor’s main menu for students to interact with.

It is a teacher win when squeals of laughter are coming from your classroom or the hallway as students work together to play memory and sports games that promote communication or as students collaborate to answer the multiple-choice quiz questions. It is an even bigger win when tools like Active Floor change students’ perspectives about the power of learning and how much fun it can be to get up and move.