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Fidget Spinners: Nightmare trend or fun educational tool?

Jul 2017

First Published: Tuesday 25-Jul-2017 11:50 AM, Edited: Tuesday 25-Jul-2017 11:50 AM
Author: Genevieve Gibson

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fidget spinners

Fidget spinners are the thing of 2017. You would be hard pressed to find a child who didn’t already have one, and a teacher that is sick to death of seeing and hearing them during class time. In case you are unfamiliar with them, a fidget spinner is a toy that consists of a bearing in the centre of a flat structure made from metal or plastic that spins along the centre axis with little effort. Marketed in 2017 as a tool to relieve anxious energy and fidgeting in children.

The challenges of this current craze.

Fidget spinners can be as helpful as they can be distracting. In the classroom setting it is often difficult enough to get children to focus for long periods of time at the work on the curriculum. However, during playtime and PE sessions there is time for fidget spinners to shine. Used at the appropriate time they can be a great tool to keep students excited and engaged in the task at hand.

How we can use these toys to our advantage?

We try to make our sessions as fun and engaging for students as we can, and implementing the use of one of their favourite toys is a great way to do that! We ask children to get creative in the ways that they can use their spinners. Where can you spin it? How can you spin it? Can you complete a task before the spinner stops spinning? These are the types of questions we ask students when they are using the fidget spinners.

Students love to see the effort you put in to make the session relevant to them. It also helps us to push students to be more creative in physical education classes, and to get them trying new things.

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About Genevieve Gibson...

Genevieve Gibson

Gen began coaching women's gymnastics in 2006 at her local club. She quickly fell in love with teaching and with the sport of gymnastics. In 2014 she began work at Gymnastics Victoria in the Development Team focusing on inclusion. Over her time in gymnastics, she has worked with the High Performance Centre, presented many inclusion and Launchpad workshops and coached thousands of young gymnasts.

After returning from overseas in early 2017, she was excited to apply for a job with Gymnastics 4 Hire and even more excited to begin work during Term 1. Gen loves to work with children, teaching them how to be safe and have fun!