MIT Project on Embodied Education

Moving Toward the Future of Teaching and Learning

How can we design 21st century educational experiences to maximize what we know about cognition and learning from the neck down as well as the neck up? Recent scientific and educational research has established that people think with their bodies as well as their brains and that finding ways to move during the school day can enhance student learning. Yet while physical activity has a presence in arts and athletics programs from PreK-college, it is typically considered peripheral to the academic mission of schools. 

The MIT Project on Embodied Education aims to close the gap between the growing body of research on movement and the learning process and the pedagogical strategies that educators use, finding ways to integrate physical activity and academic instruction at all levels—for example, teaching elementary school math through yoga, middle school physics through martial arts, high school science through swimming, and college history through dance. 


For MIT students, we offer classes including Embodied Education: Past, Present, Future; Exercise is Medicine: From Ancient Civilizations to Modern Healthcare Systems and Thinking on Your Feet: Dance as a Learning Science, where weekly “lab exercises” provide opportunities to viscerally understand the possibilities of embodied education and invite you to create future curricula.


For PreK-college teachers, professors, coaches, and movement arts instructors, we offer a guide to the science behind this pedagogical approach, pointers to assessments of its effectiveness, and free lesson plans and ideas from MIT and beyond to facilitate the introduction of a low-cost innovation that recombines existing institutional resources in novel ways.


For researchers and practitioners in this emerging area, we offer a platform to create community and feature your work for new audiences by showcasing how it’s part of a much larger conversation about the future of education. Please contact us to share your ideas here! We ask only that your resource is free to use. Materials may be submitted in any language.

The Science of Embodied Education

Assessments of Embodied Education in Practice

Lesson Plans and Ideas