Students explore the idea of energy and motivation, expressing their energy physically and in written form.


  1. Cognitive: Students will be able to give examples of energy and verbalize and demonstrate a change in energy using expressions, words, or actions.
  2. Affective: Students will feel energized and experience an adjustment in their state of being.


Time Activity Notes
1 min Explain the following in your words: energy is the “strength and vitality required for sustained physical or mental activity”. While energy can be immediate, often times motivation takes time. Motivation is “directed energy”. This activity is a quick way of energizing yourself in the moment. Remind students that motivation comes from the Latin root (“mōtīvus” to move)

Encourage curiosity and an open mind when visualizing.

1 min Have students share something that symbolizes energy to them.

  • You do can do this through a 1 word go- around
  • You have student do this in a playful non-verbal motion with their hands or eyes (isolating it to one body part).
  • Of course, you could offer students both choices too
battery, sun, vitamins, engine, fire
4 min Instruct students to close their eyes and think about what energizes them.

Ask students to write down or draw what comes to mind.

Then, show with your expressions or movement what that energy might look like. Using personal space or respectfully sharing space with others, ask students to express energy physically.

Note: Be mindful of all bodies in the room and their range of movement so this activity is accessible to all.

Where do you feel energy in your body?

Notice what you feel and where you feel it.

What does being energetic feel like?

How can you tell others are feeling energetic?

4 min Wrap up the activity by highlighting energy in movement can help manage levels of motivation. Consider the following prompts:

  • How can having energy support you throughout the day?
  • What did you notice about your energy level before and after the activity?
  • When might it be helpful to harness energy to get motivated?

Offer time for students to gather thoughts.

Ask students to share observations (in pairs, small group, whole group).

Highlight self-awareness and experiences.

Highlight the group experience.

What’s it like being in a group that is motivated?

Teacher Reflection

How did you feel after the activity? Did students participate and seem engaged? Remember to ask the students to share their feedback on the activity: What went well? What suggestions do they have for making the activity better? Think about what you might do differently next time.

Emotional Intelligence Tips

Encourage students to be patient and open to new experiences, and to reserve judgment with the activity

Auditory Cues:
“Imagine energy surging/flowing through you.”
“Notice any changes in your body.”
“Notice what you feel and where you feel it.”