By Dr. Robert Pangrazi, Human Kinetics Author, Professor Emeritus ASU
Rope jumping is an excellent activity for conditioning all parts of the body. It increases coordination, rhythm, and timing while offering a wide range of challenges. Rope jumping can be designed to suit the activity needs of all people regardless of age or condition. Workloads can easily be measured and modified by changing the amount of time jumped or the number of turns. It is a useful activity to teach children because of its carryover value for activity in later life. (An excerpt taken from Dynamic Physical Education for Elementary School Children-19th Edition.)
The lesson focus below is for Grades 3-4. This will reveal great variation among your students. Some will have trouble jumping continuously while others are able to perform basic stunts.
Instruction in this lesson should be individualized since students will either become frustrated when they keep missing or fatigued when they are able to jump continuously. I encourage teachers to bring out a second piece of equipment (such as beanbags) that allows students to recover aerobically or helps reduce their frustration. Students work independently, and when tired or frustrated, they pick up a beanbag and practice some beanbag activities. Use signs to indicate what activities they are to perform.
By alternating between beanbag activities (or some other piece of equipment) and jumping rope, students are kept engaged and on-task. This is an excellent time to teach grit. Reinforce those students who stay on task and are willing to practice many repetitions.
Bob Pangrazi, PhD, taught for 31 years at Arizona State University in the department of exercise science and physical education and is now a professor emeritus. He is a best-selling author of numerous books and texts over the years, including multiple editions of Dynamic Physical Education for Elementary School Children. This text is made even more practical in release of the 19th edition with the free interactive website Dynamic PE ASAP.