Sunday, March 4, 2012

Negative Space is Postively Fun!

I was practicing some yoga in my living room and my daughter started to dance around me and tried to fit her body into the empty spaces in the yoga poses. (With much success and imagination!)  Empty spaces are so much fun.  We usually explore big spaces we can see but what about the little spaces that are not as obvious?

Activity to Explore:
  1. Have a few of your students make shapes with their bodies.  (Remind them they can make angles, curves and straight lines with their arms, legs, knees, hips, back, etc.)
  2. Next, have a few more students try to "fit" into the empty spaces (in dance we call this negative space.)  Encourage them to complement the shape.  It is not about sticking an arm through a space but finding a way to highlight and draw attention to the space.  For example, when I was practicing Downward Facing Dog ( a yoga movement that creates a large upside down "V" with the body) my daughter rolled underneath me in a tucked in ball shape.  She created a curve under my angle.
  3. If you have permission from parents, take pictures of your exploration.
This exercise reinforces the concept of space and let's the children experiment with  how shapes can fit together.

Have fun exploring with the the children in your life!