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School Resources

Movement for learning: Q&A with Gill Connell

This webinar is a sequel to our 2021 webinar that explored the role of movement in children’s learning and development, and how teachers can support children to develop the range of gross and fine motor skills they need for a lifetime of learning.

Our presenter, Gill Connell, is a globally recognised child development expert, specialising in the foundations of learning through movement and play. She is the co-author of the popular books A Moving Child Is a Learning Child (2013) and Move Play and Learn with Smart Steps (2016).

Gill’s first webinar is also available to watch. Click here to view Gill’s April 2022 webinar Moving and Learning in early primary.

To help you navigate the webinar easily, there is a list of the key topics covered in the session below, including the time each was discussed. The key ideas discussed in this webinar are also shared in a short insight article.


Topics discussed in this webinar

Times shown in minutes and seconds from the start of the video

2.32Environments and resources for physical development
9.50Adjusting physical activities to suit the child
16.20How movement develops
21.55What to do when you have concerns about a child’s physical development
31.22Practices that restrict physical development
34.06How to balance intentional activities with child-led free play
43.10The role of physical development in supporting language development
48.08Learning to write letters and numbers in early childhood
54.37Key messages

Questions for exploring the key ideas from this webinar

What do you think about when setting up physical experiences for children?

What learning activities could you adapt to include a physical component?

How might you inform parents and whānau about the importance of movement nutrition?

How do you plan to balance intentional teaching with child-led free play?

Further reading

Connell, G., & McCarthy, C. (2013). A moving child Is a learning child: How the body teaches the brain to think. Free Spirit Publishing.

Connell, G., McCarthy, C., & Pirie, W. (2016). Move, play and learn with smart steps. Free Spirit Publishing.

By Dr Vick Hargraves

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