capoeira at a public school


Mestre Papiba Godinho

Course duration:

Courses can be tailored to meet the needs and budget of your school.


Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian art form, created by African slaves in Brazil, during the Portuguese colonization. Africans were not allowed to practice their traditional martial arts; therefore they created Capoeira, a martial art disguised as a dance. Capoeira combines physical (acrobatics, martial art, and dance), musical (drumming and singing) and philosophical elements. In a typical Capoeira class students learn the fundamentals of all these aspects.

The goals of this Capoeira course are:

  1. To develop a sense of community (help each other as a group, train together and learn together).
  2. To have a fun environment for learning the physical aspects of Capoeira (relays, roda (Capoeira circle), music, rhythm and acrobatics).
  3. To introduce Brazilian culture by teaching words and counting, stories and philosophy of Capoeira.

Learning objectives – by the end of the course, students will:

  1. Understand the importance of stretching, warm-ups and strengthening exercises (sit-ups, push-ups and lunges).
  2. Be able to do: “ginga” (the basic Capoeira swing), “esquiva” (dodges, 3 different types), kicks (“martelo” direct kicks and “mei lua” round kicks), acrobatics ( “au” cartwheel, “macaco” squat position, etc.).
  3. Build sense of community by participating in the “roda” (Capoeira circle).  Everybody has an important role in the circle, whether playing in the circle or making the music; clapping, drumming and singing.

Content outline – typical lesson:

capoeira class outline

Pre-assessment and assessment of student learning

The following skills are assessed from the beginning of the quarter to the end of the quarter looking for improvements:

  1. Physical — posture, leg and arm coordination, balance between arms and legs, head position (to be able to see other player), eye contact and acrobatic skills (spin kick, cartwheel).
  2. Participation — Openness to trying different aspects of Capoeira (physical, philosophy and musical).

Materials needed for instruction

Ropes, mats for acrobatics, drums and other musical instruments, sticks or other objects for kicking over

kids playing capoeira at school