Eurythmy Grade 4 and The Walls of Asgard

class 4 eurythmy Jan 09, 2024
Eurythmy Grade 4 and The Walls of Asgard

I have so many things I love to teach for eurythmy!  But I will have to say that teaching the fourth graders to walk the castle form after telling the story of the building of the walls of Asgard is one of my favorites!  The fourth grader is going through some major changes and challenges. They expect fairness, exactness, and full honesty. I feel that this form helps them to find those things and to fulfill that within themselves.

The Walls of Asgard, as I call it, is a precise form.  You start by walking 3 steps backward, one step to the left, three steps forward, one to the left, and repeat the pattern until you run out of space. Before we walk this for, though, I talk to the children about how the wall was built tall and strong to protect the world of the Norse gods, Asgard. Just as these walls were built tall and strong and exact, so we want to mimic that by walking tall and strong, footsteps sure and firm, walking with exactness.  If we mess up our steps and pattern, we mess up the whole form!  We must begin with the right foot! If we begin with the left, it throws off the whole pattern and you end up having to shuffle your feet in order to take the sidestep.  Every line we walk forward or backward MUST begin with the right foot!  Go ahead and try it.  

Begin with the right foot and walk three steps backward, one to the left, three steps forward, one to the left, and continue on.  It makes sense, right? It flows well.  Now try beginning with the left foot.  Three steps backward, one step to the left, three steps forward, one to the left… You get all mixed up! Your feet need to shuffle in order to make that sidestep! You are completely thrown off!

Now that we know the pattern of the steps, we must make our footsteps strong and proud!  Now we march to the rhythm; knees high, feet landing solidly on the ground. Once we know the pattern and are sure-footed, we start with the music.  Now we must learn to march this form to a beat.  It is a steady marching beat.  Again, if we start correctly, we can continue on and on!

This is where things can get tricky! Once we have mastered all these steps, I add a twist. Now, after we have stepped four times to the left, we walk three steps forward, spin around, and directly walk three steps backward!  Then we continue the pattern of one step to the left, three steps forward, etc. By spinning around, we create all sides of the wall, completely surrounding Asgard fully.  But here is the catch: We do not have time to stop and think about this! While the music is playing, we must keep up the beat! We must continue marching! If we pause, even for a moment, the whole thing is thrown off and we must begin again. 

The children love this.  It is straight forward, direct, and true. We must practice hard.  We must focus. We need to work hard in order to accomplish what we have set out to do!  The children love this challenge. Even those children who are a bit more melancholic learn to love this. Some complain that it is too hard and give up easily.  But then when they see and hear how their peers have mastered this form, they take on the challenge!  Same with phlegmatic children; they enjoy sitting by the sidelines and watching at first but are so competitive that they must get up and give it a try! Sanguine children, of course, love the continual movement.  And choleric children immediately take to the challenge! This form is a winner for all temperaments and perfect for this stage of life.

Eurythmy Inspired Movement Teacher, Ms. Tiffany 

Watch Class Samples HERE.

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