Kid Activities
1000's of Ideas for Childcare Professionals & Teachers!

Gym Games for School-Age Kids!

March 24, 2010 16:59 by Barbara Shelby

QUESTION: Besides exercise, what benefit do children receive from games?

 

Many games help children learn skills they need to know: 
   • How to solve problems...
   • How to do things hand and body wise ...
   • How to follow directions and rules...
   • How to be fair...  •How to wait their turn...

Lots and lots of games on KidActivities! Be sure to check out the many games in the category list on the left side of each page! There are also games in every 'Theme and Holiday' Category.

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THE BLOB TAG
Designate boundaries. Depending on the size of the play group, one or more children are the Blob.
Any one tagged by the Blob must join hands and become part of it.
Object: For the Blob to devour everyone and for everyone else to stay alive as long as possible.

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GARBAGE BALL
Use whatever you have that can be thrown and not hurt anyone…
Balls, wads of paper, sock balls, rubber chickens, koosh balls, etc.
Have two equal teams with a center line.
Each team starts with the same amount of items.
At the signal each team throws whatever it can get their hands on—from their side of the line to the other side.

Players continue to throw until the signal to stop (or if music is used when you play—and the music stops)
The winning team is the side with the least amount of garbage on it’s side.
To play more rounds—divide the garbage evenly again and continue. Keep score of whoever has the most wins.

You can add interest by having the “losing team” pick up all “garbage” or have both teams pick up garbage but the losing team has to do what the winning teams directs---such as accomplish a certain amount of push-ups- sit-ups, etc.

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BAND-AID TAG
One person is "it." Whenever someone is tagged by "it" they must hold a bandaid (their hand) on the spot where they were tagged. Then the game continues.
When someone runs out of bandaids, (they get tagged three times), they are frozen until two other people come over to them and "operate."

The two other people need to tag the frozen person at the same time and count to five. 
Switch the person who is "it" often.

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OCTOPUS
Play as with dodge ball, but instead of sitting out to the side-- players sit down where they are tagged by the ball.  From their sitting position, the octopus (tagged kids) help with tagging any players who get close enough to be touched. If a player is caught this way, they also sit down where they have been caught.

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LIGHTHOUSE AND SHIPS
One player is designated to be the lighthouse.
One quarter of the players assumes the role of “rocks” and they scatter in a bounded area.
All the other students become ships and boats of various sizes.

  • The ships blindly navigate their way (eyes closed) their way about, attempting to reach the safety of the lighthouse.
  • If a boat bumps into a rock, the boat becomes and extension of the existing rock and makes the noise “swish” (water lapping against the rocks).
  • The lighthouse constantly goes “Beep! Beep! Beep!” to help the ships reach the safety of the lighthouse. 

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CONTINUEITY BALL
Equipment :3 Balls (Beach Balls)
Players scatter over the playing area and a ball is tossed into the air. The objective is to keep the ball in the air using any part of the body.
Once one ball is up, get two or three balls going at the same time.
Keep count of the number of times the ball (or balls) is kept up in the air before it hits the ground.
Youth try and better the number next time around.

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DRAG THE BODY
K-6…Promotes cooperation and develops strength...
Need several old sheets or blankets

#1 Version: Divide the group into two teams.
Give each team a blanket.
Have one player from each team lie down on the blanket.
The teams must drag the body on the blanket from one end of the gym or yard to the other.
Whoever crosses the finish line first, wins.

#2 Version: You can also increase the number of kids on the blanket and have more draggers pulling them…or have an entire team get on the blanket and try to move to the destination point and back by rolling, scooting, shuffling, etc.

#3 This vesion is played as a relay...
Have players form teams of 6-10.
Players form pairs within their teams.
Object is that one player drags his/her partner who is laying or sitting on the sheet or blanket to the end of the room (or where you decide) and drag back again.
(They can also switch at the half-way point.- If they don't switch half-way -they go all the way back and then switch places.
Each pair repeats the process-- until all have had a chance to drag and be dragged.

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CRAB KICK
Supplies:
Ball of any type,
Large area for play
Something for a goal (desk, basket, trash can).

  • Divide  group into two equal-sized teams and have them sit on the floor at opposite ends of the room.
  • Place a goal at each end and the ball in the center of the room.
  • When given the signal for play to start, the children must crab walk to the ball and attempt to kick the ball toward their goal and score.
  • Players must stay in the crab-walk position the entire game. Failure results in the opposing team getting a free kick.
  • After a goal is scored, the ball is placed in the center of the play area and the game resumes.
  • The first team to reach an agreed-upon number of points wins.
    From Indoor Action Games for Elementary Children (1989, Parker Publishing).

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SPIN AND RUN
It's a simple race.
First, hold a broom or baseball bat in the air, looking at the top of it.
Keeping your eye on the top, spin in a circle 10 times.
Now (try to) run to the finish line. Lot's of silly fun should follow...

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TRUE OR FALSE

  • The players are divided into 2 equal teams standing on either side of a center line.
  • One of these is the "True" team and the other is the "False" team.
  • Each team has a goal on either side of the center line.
  • When the leader gives a true statement, such as "Grass is Green", the true players run for their goal, chased by the false team.
  • If tagged, the members of the true team become members of the false team. (and just the opposite if the question is false)
  • The team that has the most players at the end of the playing time is the winner.

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BED SHEET PING PONG
Players stand and hold a bed sheet on opposite ends.
A ping pong ball is placed onto the sheet.
The sheet is then raised or lowered.
The object of the game is to get the ping pong ball to fall off the other team's side of the sheet.

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BODY PART FREEZE TAG
Body part freeze tag is just like regular freeze tag except once tagged, you are NOT completely frozen.

  • Select one or two children to be “it.” These children run around tagging other children.
  • If a child is tagged on the arm, only the arm is frozen.
  • If tagged on the leg, only the leg is frozen, so the child must hop on one leg.
  • If both legs are tagged, the child can pull himself along the ground with arms (assuming they weren’t already tagged).
    The object is to completely freeze as many as possible.
    If you want, you can have others unfreeze body parts as well.

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PRISONER OF WAR
Children are divided into teams. Each team selects one child from their team to be the prisoner of the other team; the two prisoners are placed in jail.
This can be a designated area or a chalk box if playing outside.
The teams each line up and the object of the game is to free the prisoner from the other team.

The teams must get to the prison by going to the other team’s side to free the prisoner.
If tagged, that child then becomes a prisoner too and must go to jail.
If a child makes it to jail, he or she is safe as long as he is inside the prison.
The rescuer can only rescue one person at a time and can choose the right time to “break for it.”

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WHAT TIME IS IT MR. WOLF?
This game is fast-paced and great for a larger group.

  • One child is Mr. Wolf and stands against the wall with their back to the room.
  • The rest of the children line up on the opposing wall.
  • The children ask in unison, "What time is it, Mr. Wolf?"
  • Mr. Wolf gives a time, such as 5 o'clock, and the children take that many steps towards Mr. Wolf.
  • Eventually, Mr. Wolf answers, "Lunchtime," and turns to chase the children back to the wall.
  • Any child who gets tagged before reaching the wall becomes a Wolf as well.
  •  The balance of the game soon shifts, with all children becoming Wolves.

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CATCHING STARS (Similar to Mr. Fox)
This game was developed in Africa...

  • Divide the players into two groups: Stars and Catchers.
  • Set up two boundaries about twenty feet apart.
  • Catchers: Stand in the middle of the two boundaries
  • Stars: Stand on one side of the boundaries
  • Catchers: Say "Star light, star bright, how many stars are out tonight."
  • Stars: Say "More than you can catch!"
  • The stars run across to the other end and try not to get tagged.
  • The winner is the last person to get caught.

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BROOM HOCKEY
Required: Brooms, rubber ball, and goals (boxes or buckets)
Players: 2 or more
This game can be played in any size room.

  • Make two goals opposite of each other.
  • Start the game with a face-off in the center of the room.
  • Opponents attempt to hit the puck into the opposite goal.
  • The goalie is allowed to block shots in any way he desires.
  • Penalties may be assessed for delaying the game, holding the puck with hands or feet, high sticking or other unnecessary roughness.
  • The opposite team may receive a free shot (except for goalie) on goal when penalties occur.
  • For large groups limit number of players and substitute once a score is made.

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FOUR SQUARE
You need: A gym floor with 4 squares ...

  • The player in square 4 serves the ball by bouncing it in his square and tapping the ball into another square.
  • The player in that space must tap the ball (after one bounce) into another kid's area, and so on, until someone misses the ball, lets the ball bounce twice, or sends it out of the grid.
  • The player who misses the ball steps out and the remaining players rotate up through the numbered squares.
  • If you are playing with more than four players, a new player enters the game at square 1.
  • The player who is out waits in line to re-enter the game once square 1 is open again.
  • Whoever is now in square 4 serves the ball to resume play.

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BLINDED FOUR CORNERS
Required: Blindfold
Players: Medium to large groups
Here’s a quick game that can be played in a classroom or gym.

  • Select one player to wear a blindfold and they are to be placed into the center of the room.
  • Once the player is blindfolded and in position, the other players must stand in one of the four corners.
    They must do this very quietly (no talking allowed) and within 10 seconds.
  • If a player is not in a corner by the time your done counting, that player is out of the game.
  • The player that is blindfolded will point to one of the corners and all the players in that corner will be out of the game.
  • To be fair you cannot go to one corner, make noises and then quickly move to another corner.
  • If no one is in a selected corner, the players have 5 seconds to get to another corner before a new corner is selected.
  • The one person that was never found will be the new player in the middle.

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MINE FIELD
In an area of 60x30 (volley ball court or gym) place squeaky toys, balloons, chairs, ropes. and cones randomly about.
Kids form partners.
One person is blindfolded; their partner must talk them through the "mine field."
Partners may not touch each other at any time.
Try and make it from one side of the playing area to the other.
Several pairs may try to maneuver at the same time...

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PICK-POCKET TAG (Or Tail Tag)
Need Flags or a strip of cloth to be used as a tail.
Players have a tail inserted into his/her belt or pocket that is hanging at the back-side.
All players chase one another trying to collect tails, while protecting his/her own.
Players with the most tails collected in a specified time are the winners.

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STICKY POPCORN
The children begin by " popping " around the gym as pieces of sticky popcorn, searching for other pieces of popcorn.
When two pieces of popcorn meet, they stick together.
Once stuck together, they continue to pop around together, sticking to even more pieces, until they end up in a big popcorn ball.

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BARNYARD
(This could also be called Zoo, Ocean, Circus, or Outer Space, if you are having a "Theme"; You'd just change the names to go with the theme.)

  • Depending how many children you have--form teams. You can have anywhere from 3 Teams to ?????
  • Teams are in their groups and one end of the gym.
  • Players in teams have DESIGNATED NAMES:
    Sheep, Cows, Horses, Pigs, etc.
  • Two or three persons are "It" in the middle of the room.
  • "It" calls out the names of the animals (Example - Sheep)
  • All sheep must run to the pen at the opposite end of the room without being caught.
  • When "BARNYARD" is called, everyone must run to the opposite end.
  • Penalty for being caught is to run all around the barnyard (A LAP OF THE GYM) once--- and then they can come back in the game!
    (Remember to change the "It" people)

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THE QUIET OLYMPICS

  • DISCUS THROW: Use a paper plate
  • SHOT-PUT: Use a balloon
  • TRACK RACE: Each player lines up at the start line and race by placing the heel of one foot against the toe of the next. The first one to the end of the track and back wins.
  • HIGH JUMP: Each contestant takes a deep breath and whistles. The contestant who holds the note the longest wins.
  • HIGH DIVE: Each player stands on a chair (or faces the chair back-rest and then kneels chair seat) with ten clothes pins and drops them into an empty bottle. The player that gets the most wins. Source: allthedaze.com

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FITNESS MANIA
Required: Playing cards (preferably larger size) and activity slips-two of each directive (be creative)
Players: Small to large groups

  • For 'Fitness Mania' the players will perform a variety of fitness activities in order to improve their own levels of physical fitness. (Muscular strength, muscular endurance, body composition, flexibility and cardio respiratory endurance). Present it as a game!

  •  Divide into two teams; each team will line up in a horizontal single file on opposite sides of the card and activity slip piles.
  • The first person on each team will run towards the middle and pick up a card and and activity slip.
  • Each card represents a number. 2 =2, Jack = 11, Ace = 14, etc. That is the number of times the team will perform the task. Note: If a player picks up an activity that their team has already done, they must pick another activity slip.
  • Players will run back towards their group then read and perform the activity as a group. (Example: Do ____ curl-ups).
  • The next person in line then goes and the game continues until all of the cards or activity slips are gone.
  • The team that finishes first wins.

Exercise ideas:
Sit ups, push ups, right sideway leg lift, left side-way leg lift, run in place, shoulder rolls, jumping jacks, hop on right foot, hop on left foot, jump up and down, scissor jump-steps, siwmming from waist motion, jump rope in place-without a rope, etc.

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PRUIE
Everyone walks around with their eyes closed in a small space.
When they bump into someone--they ask, "Pruie?"
If "Pruie" is said back to you--- then they are not the person you are looking for and you continue looking in the group.

The referee has whispered to one person, telling them that they are the "Pruie".
The Pruie does not have to close their eyes and if someone bumps into them and asks "Pruie?" they do not respond.
This is the clue to join onto their hand and open your eyes.
The fun comes when there is only one person left to find the Pruie!

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RED-LIGHT-GREEN LIGHT
Select one child,to start the game and be the “stoplight”.
All the children line up on the other side of gym.
The 'stoplight' yells “Green light!” and the children lined up start running.
Object of game: The first one to make it to the stoplight wins and is now the stoplight.
It gets tricky when the stoplight changes...

  • The stoplight should yell “Red light!” to get children to stop.
  • Any movement by a child means she is sent back to the beginning.
  • The stoplight can also call out “yellow light” which means the children can only walk very slowly.
  • Variations to this game include yelling “red light” two times in a row, or adding body movements. Say “green light” with your arms up one time and then say “red light,” but throw your arms up again to confuse runners into thinking your body language says “green light.”

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HULA HOOP FREEZE TAG
Scatter out several hula hoops around the floor.
Assign taggers to freeze the other players.
Students inside a hula hoop can not get frozen, but can only stay long enough to count to 10.
Only one child per hula hoop is allowed.

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"IT" TAG
This game is played like traditional tag.
The number of children playing, will determine the number of "ITS" you have--which would normally be from 1 to 3.
Every ______ minutes, change your "It".

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NOSE AND TOE TAG
Formation : Scatter
Three or four players are "It".
Players try to tag others.
Other players can be immune from the tag by holding their nose with one hand and their toes with the other.
They can only hold this pose for three seconds.
They must immediately start to run after stopping in his manner.
When tagged they also become an "It".

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PROTECT YOUR 'TARGET' (A TAG GAME)

1. Choose one child to become "It."
2. Divide the remaining players into teams of three members each. Each team will choose one of the three members to be a target. The target on each team will wear an identifying marker such as a piece of masking tape.
3. The Game:
Players  hold onto their teammates' wrists.  "It"  counts to 10 while the other players move away from him/her. Players continue to hold each others wrists during the entire game.
4. Once "It" reaches 10, they race to each team and try to tag the targets.
5. Each team  blocks/protects their target.
The winning team is the one that avoids having its 'target' tagged.

If a large group of children are playing, have more than one "It".

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MOTHER MAY I?
All the children line up side by side except the player who is the caller. The caller stands at a distance from the lined up players.
He calls on each player in turn to take a number of steps toward him. The steps allowed are: baby steps, giant steps, and scissor steps (like forward jumping jacks.)
The player answers "Mother, may I?"

The mother answers "Yes, you may."
The player takes the given number of steps toward the caller.
If the player forgets to ask permission after they get directions--- and takes steps toward the caller--- they are sent back to the starting line. The first player to reach the caller is the winner and new caller.
Idea: Change the name to the season: Teacher May I? Santa, Snowman, Cupid, Leprechaun, Bunny, etc.

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MONKEY TAG
Scatter with 3 or 4 kids who are "It".

  • When players are tagged, they must lie on their backs, feet up in the air.
  • They are free if another person can touch both feet with their elbow before being caught.
  • Time game so many get a turn at being "It".

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CATS IN THE CORNER
Need Soft balls- For Medium to large groups

  • Mark off square play area.
  • The ball thrower will be in the center of the square.
  • There are safe zones at each of the corners where all the players called 'Cats' will be.
  • When the thrower calls "Cats In The Corner", the Cats have to run from one corner to another without getting hit by the ball.
  • They can go any direction including diagonal as long as they do not get hit.
  • Any player hit by the ball is out.
  • If you have a large group you can have several balls and a couple throwers.

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FEATHER BLOW
Purchase feathers at a local craft store.
Give each child a feather.
When you say, "GO!" the kids start blowing the feather in the air. Whoever can keep the feather in the air the longest (using only his/her breath) is the winner.
This game can also be played in teams.

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RUN RABBIT RUN
Half of the group are called foxes and the other half are named rabbits.
Rabbits are standing behind a line at one end of the play area. (home)
Foxes are scattered all over the gym.

  • Captain Rabbit leads his/her brood for a walk.
  • The leader of the foxes says : "Run Rabbit Run!"
  • All rabbits run trying to return to their home.
  • All TAGGED rabbits become foxes.
  • Continue until there are no "rabbits" left. 

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END DODGE BALL
Equipment: Sponge balls of various sizes
A ball is thrown in to start the game.
The teams (each on their own side of line) throw two or three balls, back and forth, trying to hit the opposite team.
As players are hit, they must go stand behind the opposing team on the back line so that they can RETRIEVE the balls AND THROW THEM BACK to their team.

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SQUAT, SQUAT, SCAT!
This is a 'version" of Duck, Duck, Goose.

  • While young children think "Duck, Duck, Goose" is fun---those over grade 2 may take offense with playing a "Baby" Game...that's when you try the game with a "Themed" title or this type of game name!
  • It's still Duck, Duck, Goose---but with a different name!
  • Have children sit in a circle... 
  • One person is "It".
  • This person runs around the circle touching the players on the back saying: "Squat, squat, squat"

When "It" touches a player and says "Scat", that person must chase "It" around the circle.
"Scat" tries to tag "It" before he/she gets home.

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STUCK IN THE MUD
A basic tag game.
If children are tagged, they must stand with their legs apart (stuck in
the mud) until someone crawls through and releases them.

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WHO HAS THE CHICKEN?
1.  You have two or more taggers, and two youth with rubber chickens.
2.  The taggers run and tag children to freeze them.
3.  The students with the rubber chickens can run around and unfreeze the "frozen."
4.  After a few minutes switch the taggers and the chickens.

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FIND YOUR FRIEND
Make sure there are no trip hazards.
Blindfold all children, set them a distance apart from each other, spin them gently/slowly around, and then turn them loose.
They must find their friends, link arms, and then find the rest of their friends.
They will have a good time shuffling around and bumping into each other!
(Be sure an adult is present at all times)

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LIMBO
Two players hold a soft rope or stick 3' to 4' long. Players take turns leaning backward and shuffling under the rope. Lower the rope after each round. (Be sure to play Limbo music!)

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CAT AND MOUSE
Have all players join hands in a circle. Choose a 'Cat' and a 'Mouse'.
The cat chases the mouse around and through the circle.
Players help the mouse but not the cat. When Mouse is caught a new Cat and Mouse are chosen.

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SET A "BOOK" of RECORDS
(Your own Guinness Book of Records!!!)
This one is a surefire winner! Keep your own program, classroom, or family book of records; have kids/players try to set records for things such as:

  • Most jumping jacks
  • Jumps in jump roping
  • Running laps in gym
  • Running laps outside
  • Most crafts made for the month or year
  • Longest handstand
  • Most books read, puzzles completed, etc.
  • Anything else that you can think of.
  • When they start to utter that they are bored give them a new record to break and a fun reward if they set a new record! Be sure to make this a yearly ongoing event---NEW records can be set each year!!! 

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TIPS

TIP: CONSIDERING HOCKEY? TRY THIS TO LEARN…
For a safer version:

Instead of using actual Hockey sticks, use foam noodles that are for swimming. Instead of a puck, use a waffle ball. If you don't have small goals, use two cones at each end.

Tape or mark off the boundaries. Make sure to enforce a "no high sticking" rule before the game begins. This will ensure that the teams aren't whacking each other with the noodles. Have a penalty box for the rule-breakers. You can make a time limit, or a goal limit. If you have many kids be sure to switch out players…

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TIP: Do you remember your favorite game as a child?
Teach that game to your kids!!! Celebrate and have fun keeping the old games alive!

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TIP: TEACHING JUMPING JACKS
Saw this quite awhile back ...don't remember where...but it works!
When the kids' legs are out and hands clapped above the head, this is called "teepee" and when the kids' legs are together and hands at their sides, it's "pencil."
They can learn this skill slowly as they shout "teepee... pencil...teepee...pencil."

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GAME FUN FACT :
'Simon Says' started as a game in New York State's Catskill Mountains during its heyday as a resort area. It was designed to get older women up and exercising.

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Check out the Indoor or Outdoor Walking Club! A great idea!

Looking for more games??? Just click on your interest!

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Races, Relays, Balloons & Bean Bag Games!

February 27, 2010 05:39 by Barbara Shelby

Updated January 2013

THE FOLLOWING GAMES ARE GREAT FOR BOTH INDOOR AND OUTDOOR PLAY--as well as parties, themes and Red, White and Blue Days! Below are relay and races as well as games that use bean bags, eggs, and balloons!

RACES & RELAYS...

NEWSPAPER RACE 
Two newspaper sheets required per player.
Each player must race to the turning point and back, stepping only on his newspapers.
He steps on one, lays the other in front of him steps on it, moves the first forward, and steps on it and so on.

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NO HANDS GET UP
Players run to turning point, stop, lie down on their backs, fold hands across chest and get up without moving their arms, and run back to finish line.

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HUMAN HURDLE (Must have at least 10 players)

1. Divide players into 2 teams...with each team laying in a circle.(Be sure there is a wide space between each player and heads are towards the center of the circle.

2. Assign each team member a number. (If there are 6 players on each team, each team player will be number 1 through 6) #1 on each team, gets up and runs over the bodies in the group--until they get back to their own spot.

3. #2 gets up and does the same. The first team to have all runners 'hurdle'--is the winner!

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STANDING PRETZEL RACE or RELAY

1. Have kids get into pretzel positions by standing on their left leg.
2. Lift the right leg and cross it in front of the left knee.
3. Cross arms in front of the body.
4. On the word "go" hop to the finish line. The "pretzel" who gets to the finish line 1st wins.

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TUNNEL RELAY
All members in the team stand astride. Runners must first crawl under the legs of all players in the team--run forward to the turn around point --and return to tag the next person of the team who does the same thing as the first player. Play continues...

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SKIP AND THROUGH
Children stand in partners in a double circle.
The partners skip around the circle.
On signal, the inside person stops, folds their arms and puts their legs apart.
The outside person runs around the circle, goes through partner's tunnel and sits cross-legged on the inside of the circle.

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UNDER BROOM RELAY 
Lay a broom across two chairs for each team.
Form teams and direct them to run from the starting line to the broom, crawl under the broom without knocking it off, and then run back to the starting line where they  tag the next guest in line.
Continue until each guest has had a turn.
The team to finish first wins.

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SPIDER RACE
Team formation, Players #1 stand facing the goal.
Player #2 stands beside him, with his back to the goal.
The two players link elbows and on the signal, the pair run to the goal and back.
One person runs backward each time.
The rest of the players repeat the same action until every person has a turn.

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WHEEL BARROW
Partners assume the Wheel barrow and pusher position.
On the signal, advance to the turning point where they change positions and return to the starting line.

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WILD ROLL RELAY
Need several balls and a bat, broom, or yardstick for each team.
Put teams in separate lines (rows).
First child takes the ball and pushes or bats (whatever you decide) the ball from one end of the room to the other.
They then pick up the ball with one hand and drag the broom or stick with the other... and run back to starting line.
It can be varied by  the kids going backwards while pushing or batting the ball to their teams or the players hopping while going back and forth.

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CARTWHEEL RACE - Self explanatory Laughing

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CONSEQUETIVE JUMPS - Everyone jumps in predetermined fashion

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INSIDE OR OUTSIDE BANANA OLYMPICS (Relay Race)
Divide the group into teams of 8-10 players and give each team a banana.

Some ideas for Banana Relays:
1. Place the banana between the knees and hop down the course and back.
2. Two teammates tossing the banana back and forth down the course and back.
3. The banana under your armpit and hopping on one leg down and back.
4. Teammates line up in leapfrog formation and first player hops over players while holding banana and then tosses banana to next player in line to do the same.

Show the players all the relays that they’ll have to complete for the Olympics. You may have to write them on a large white board so that all players will know what relay is next. Once a team has completed all these relays someone (or the whole team) on the team must eat the banana and the team that is done first is the winner. Use your own ideas, add to the list or use only a few ideas. You can adjust this game to all types of players including the disabled.

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SOCCER RELAY
1.  Need three or four balls and cones...
2.  Partners are placed in file formation.
3.  Place cones at the end of the play area.
4.  The first two partners have a soccer ball.
5.  On signal, they must run, PASSING THE BALL FROM ONE TO THE OTHER... up to.. and around... the cone.
6.  They return passing the ball the same way ..and give the ball to the next two in their team.
7.  Relay play continues in same manner.

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CONTINUOUS HOOP RELAY
Need about five hoops
1.  Line up File line...
2.  The first player runs up and picks up a hoop.
3.  The other team members run up and go through the hoop.
4.  When all are through, the leader with the hoop rushes back with the hoop.
5.  The leader hands the hoop to the second person who runs up and everyone runs through again.
6.  Give everyone the chance to be the leader.

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SHOE BOX FOOT RELY RACE
Have the children bring two shoe boxes with them.
Tape the lids onto the boxes, then cut a one-inch-wide and four-inch long slit in each top.
Have the contestants slip their feet into the slits in the boxes and race...
The race can be individual--with all youth racing together in a horizontal line--or done as a relay.

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PUSH UP RELAY
1.  Create groups of four or five players in file formation.
2.  The teams stand behind a line.
3.  TWO PLAYERS FROM EACH TEAM ARE DESIGNATED AS OBSTACLES: one to go under and one to jump over.
4.  On signal, the first person in each team runs up and crawls UNDER the first obstacle; This person obstacle does a push up holding the position.
5.  The player then jumps OVER the second obstacle and then touches the given line. This player then runs back to tag the next team member to do the same.

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JUMP THE CREEK!
Need: Two long ropes
Divide the children into two teams, on at each end of the play area.
On your signal
, the two teams run and try to jump the ropes.
Keep on widening the ropes each time.
If the students land in the creek, they must dry their feet (lie on their back and shake their legs)
They then get up and continue the jumps!

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COTTON BALL RACE
Materials Needed:
Lots of cotton balls, Vaseline, 2 or 4 bowls, tissue paper

1. Put a handful of cotton balls in one of the bowls.
 Put the bowl at one end of a rug or mat that is on the floor (Or just play on floor)
Put the other empty bowl on the opposite end of the mat.
2. Rub Vaseline on the child’s nose and have them put their nose in the bowl with the cotton balls.
3. The object of the game is to get as many cotton balls as possible on their nose without using their hands.
4. After cotton balls are stuck to their nose—they crawl over to the empty bowl --- and take them off their nose with their hands-- kids then put them in the bowl. Wipe the Vaseline off with a tissue or napkin.
5. If you play with TEAMS set a time limit, and see who moves the most cotton balls from one bowl to the next.

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OBSTACLE RELAY (set up two courses)
Players run the course from the head of the team to the turning point and back to the head of the team.
They follow the course as to whatever you have set-up.
The use of hoops, skipping ropes, Indian clubs, mats, low vaulting boxes, basketball hoops, or what-have-you offer an almost endless selection of obstacles. 

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POPCORN RELAY RACE All it takes are two big bowls of popcorn and some small cups per team. Have kids run and get a cupful of popcorn and transfer it to the bowl across the room. The first team finished wins. Because of potential popcorn mess, this would be good played outside! The critters can eat what isn't’ swept up! (Play in gym if you’re brave!)

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POPCORN ON THE HEAD RELAY
• Split youth into two teams.
Give each team a cup of popcorn.
Have each player take turns walking with the cup of popcorn on their heads, across the room, around a chair and back to their team.
Play for a specified amount of time such as 2 minutes or more. The team that has the most popcorn left in their cup wins!

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THE WORM SQUIRM Obstacle Course Game
... Great for a "Pajama or Bug Theme party"! This is an obstacle course made of pillows, boxes etc, ... when it's your turn, you squirm like a worm on your belly to complete the obstacle course

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STUNT RELAY
In stunt relays, the runners advance to the turning point--- stops and performs a stunt (that has been pre-determined).
They return to tag the next runner on their team.
There is virtually no end to the number of stunts which can be performed.

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WIGGLE WORM RELAY
Form relay lines.
1.  Everyone in each line puts their left hand between their legs and the person behind grabs that hand with their right hand.
2.  Then they run at a given signal to the other end of the playing area and back.
3.  The first team to return 'intact' wins!

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THREE LEGGED RACE
It's best to play on a grassy area or even a sandy beach.
You’ll need:
Old rags or stockings
Cut rags in wide strips ~ 3 feet long.
Use old stockings; they are softer and have some give to them. Pair up into partners and stand side by side.

Tie one persons left leg to the other player’s right, or vise versa. Practice walking together until you get a rhythm going and then try hopping or running. This can be played as a race or just for active fun.
An obstacle course can be created as well. For a real challenge if it is warm -try adding and avoiding an oscillating sprinkler. Be sure to wear swim suits!
The kids won’t be able to make it without getting wet!

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THE 100 INCH DASH!
You need: yard stick and tape

  • Measure out 100" on the floor or field.
  • Mark a start and finish line with the tape.
  • Start the race at the signal and try to reach the finish line.
  • What makes this difficult is that the children are to move their feet only one inch at a time by taking baby steps!
  • The winner crosses the finish line first.

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SACK RACE
If you are lucky enough to have a feed supply store near by, burlap sacks can be purchased inexpensively. If not, old pillow cases will do. A soft grassy park or lawn will prevent scrapes. (I purchased  sacks at Oriental Trading) bjs

Each player steps into his/her sack with both feet.
Pull the sack high enough to hold the edges.
Practice hopping first, until all of the players get the hang of it.
Identify the start and finish lines.
Blow the whistle and go!
Adjust the race with obstacles for more excitement----or if it's summer add sprinklers...

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POP A BAG RACE
Need: Paper Bags
Give each child a small paper bag.
With the signal, race to the marker and then blow up the bags.
Instruct youth to pop  them with their hands and then race back to the line.
The first player to pop his/her bag and return to the finish line is the winner.

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LEAP FROG

Tape down or mark a starting and finish line.

  • To start each child holds a bent drinking straw between their nose and upper lip. (Demonstrate this by curling the lip and holding it tight.)
  • The first child who reaches the finish line-without loosing the straw is the winner.
  • Adjust the running distance to the age of the child.

1.  If you are playing in a group with more than three players, you start by lining up in single file.
2.  The first person in the line takes a few steps forwards and then bends over to make the first frog.
3.  The next person in the line then leaps the first frog, carries on for a few steps and then bends over to make the second frog.
4.  The third person in the line then has to run and leap frogs one and two and then bends over to make the third frog.
5.  This carries on until all the players have jumped. This can be played with one line or in Teams.

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THE QUIET OLYMPICS

DISCUS THROW: Use a paper plate
SHOT-PUT: Use a balloon
TRACK RACE: Each player lines up at the start line and race by placing the heel of one foot against the toe of the next.
The first one to the end of the track and back wins.
HIGH JUMP: Each contestant takes a deep breath and whistles.
The contestant who holds the note the longest wins.
HIGH DIVE: Each player stands on a chair (or faces the chair back-rest and then kneels chair seat) with ten clothes pins and drops them into an empty bottle.
The player that gets the most wins.

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BACKWARD RACE (Good for younger children)
As quickly as possible, walk backwards to the finish line.
While doing this—try not to bump into each other.

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EGG RACES! (They're not only for Easter!)

  EGG TOSS
You’ll need one, hard-boiled egg for each pair of children.
Have the children stand across from a partner. They should stand one foot apart.
When the leader says, “Go” the children should toss the eggs to their partners.
With hard-boiled eggs, everyone can play the whole game because the eggs won’t crack.
With each toss, the children should back up one step. Play until the eggs are destroyed and before the kids get bored. 

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THE EGG-A-THON
This can be played as a race or relay…
Use a tablespoon and a hard-boiled egg or plastic Easter egg and plastic spoon.
Children try to walk fast holding the egg in the spoon to the finish line.
It can also be done as a relay and have one child in the middle of the race line waiting.
The children transfer the egg to their relay partner's spoon and go!

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FOLLOW THE LEADER… 
Give each child a tablespoon and a hard-boiled egg.
The children form a line and one is the leader.
Each one holds the spoon with the egg in its bowl at arm's length and hops on one foot, following wherever the leader leads them.
To drop the egg or rest on both feet prevents one from continuing in the game. They stay out until the next round.

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FUN WITH BEAN BAGS!!!

 BEAN BAG CHALLENGES:

Put up a chart with the below challenges...who can complete the list????

•Throw a beanbag in the air, turn around, and catch it again.

Throw the beanbag up and backwards over your head and try to catch it behind your back.

Throw the beanbag in the air, clap your hands once, and catch it. Now try clapping your hands twice, then three times, and so on. How high can you go?

Throw the beanbag in the air and clap your hands under your right leg before catching it. Now try with your left leg. Now clap behind your back. Invent some more challenges.

Throw the beanbag up, jump, and try to catch it. Jump twice. Jump three times!

Throw it up, kneel down and try to catch it.

Throw and catch with just your right hand, then with just your left.

Try throwing it up and catching it with your eyes closed!

Balance the beanbag on your right foot, then throw it up and catch it from there. Can you do it with your left foot too?

Can you throw the beanbag up and catch it on your left foot?

Can you run with a beanbag balanced on your head? Can you jump? Can you twist around? Can you kneel down and stand up again, or sit down? Can you climb the stairs? Can you do any of these things with two beanbags balanced on your head? Or three?

Try balancing a beanbag on each shoulder while you walk, run, jump etc.

Sing one of your favorite songs or rhymes while you throw the beanbag up and catch it, or pass it round a circle of children.

Set up a variety of hoops, containers and targets and have some throwing practice. How far can you throw the beanbag? Does it make a difference if you throw over-arm or underarm? Adapted From: activityvillage.co.uk

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BEAN BAG RELAY GAMES Age: 4 and all the way up!
Divide the children into teams and line them up in rows. Give the child at the front of each row a beanbag.
How to play: The children pass the beanbag from one to the next and back again, in a particular style, which you can decide as appropriate for the age of the children

  • Pass it down the row with the right hand only
  • Pass it up the row with left hand only
  • Pass it down the row with both hands
  • Pass it up the row with right hand over left shoulder
  • Pass it down the row with left hand over right shoulder
  • Pass it up the row under the right leg
  • Pass it down the row under the left leg, and so on

TIP: For younger children, it might be a good idea to practice the game movements first! If a beanbag is dropped, you can make the children start again from the the front of the row.
TIP: Cue the kids! On a white board or chart paper write the order of steps in passing the bean bags.

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BEAN BAG TOSS
Buy or make a painted wood or cardboard bean bag toss. Make the shape according to the theme.
Use bean bags to toss—or be creative and toss something based on the theme. Example: Scrunched up paper or large marshmallows for a winter theme.

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BALLOON GAMES...

GAME #1 BALLOON BURST
Several balloons and string needed.
Each player is given two balloons to be inflated and tied around each ankle with a piece of string.
Object of game is to burst the other players balloons with their feet—no hands allowed.
Winner is last person with a balloon or balloons. Game can be played with or without boundaries.

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#2 BALLOON BOP
Need several pre-blown balloons.

  • Players may stand or sit.
  • Each team is given a balloon to keep in the air for as long as possible. They can only bat or tap the balloon to keep it afloat—no throwing or catching is allowed.
  • Each time the balloon hits the ground- a point is scored AGAINST that team. (Some one needs to keep score.)
  • The team with the lowest score is the winner.

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#3 BALLOON BOUNCE
A contest to see who can keep a balloon in the air the longest using only their head.
The person who can keep it in the air longest without using anything but their head is the winner.
 (This game can also be played in teams).

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#4 BUZZ-BOMB BALLOON GAME

1 balloon per player, not inflated--Tape or string to make a target...
Played from a line or circle...

  • All players inflate their balloon. Some players may need help.
  • When the leader says "1, 2, 3, GO!" The players release their balloons in the direction of the target. If you are having a THEME PARTY, use a picture from the theme as the target center.
  • Score 5 points for the closest balloon and 15 points for a direct hit.

This game works well with teams - each team gets their own colored balloons; red, blue, green etc. Or, you do not need to keep score at all and just have fun playing the game several times. Source: amazingmoms.com

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 #5 LEFT OVER BALLOONS??? PLAY BALLOON BADMITTEN
An idea inspired by World Pre-School Mom is to use fly swatters (At Dollar Store  about 2 for $1.00)...Children simply hit the balloon back and forth to each other!

OR...

Another great idea is to make paddles simply taping tongue depressor sticks to the back of paper plates. Use the paper plate 'paddles' to keep a blown up ballon up in the air--This game can be played in a gym or outdoors--- played individually or in a group! It's also a great way to repurpose  paper plates and balloons! (Images by KidActivites.net)

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#6 WATER BALLOON OBSTACLE COURSE
Materials:
Lots of water balloons
Space for obstacle course

  • Set up a summer themed obstacle course.
  • Children place a water balloon under their chins and must negotiate the obstacle course without breaking the balloon.
  • This can also be done as a cooperative activity or group initiative. If a balloon breaks, that person must go back to the beginning, get another balloon and start again. The team must wait for the missing member to rejoin.

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#7 WATER BALLOON BRIGADE
Materials:
Many water balloons in buckets or tubs, laundry basket.

  • Participants stand in a circle and pass one balloon at a time around the circle--until many balloons at one time are going around.
  • After a given time, the number of balloons successfully passed is tallied.
  • Players then try to beat their score.

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MAKE YOUR OWN BEAN BAGS FOR GAMES OUT OF PAPER NAPKINS! 
The Bean Bag photograph is courtesy of School in your Home.

 All you do is crumple up some napkins into a tight ball and then wrap another napkin around and secure in back with a rubber band. You can color the napkin with water-based markers before wrapping it or after. Experiment to see which works better. These inexpensive beanbags make for a fun activity for all ages--preschool and up! They would also make nice puppet heads!

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Parachute Games

October 21, 2009 02:26 by Barbara Shelby

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Most think parachute games are only for very young children--not so! Some of the games below-- especially those that use a ball, are fun for kids 5 to 11 years old! Games using balls, cotton balls, jump ropes, pom poms, balloons and bean bags are towards page bottom... 

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MUSHROOM--A GOOD WAY TO INTRODUCE THE PARACHUTE!

1. Children evenly spread out in a circle --while holding the edge.
2. Pull the parachute taut and then lower it between knee level
and the ground.
3. On a signal-all raise the chute upwards; it will fill with air and
rise up like a giant mushroom (In the winter-call it an "IGLOO")

Tip #1: to get it as high as possible, all participants take a couple steps towards the center as the chute rises.
Tip #2: Practice together so the children can learn cooperation and
working together as a group.


VARIATION OF MUSHROOM: Once the basic play is mastered, experiment!

1. Mushroom and then all children runs to the center while still holding the chute.

2. Mushroom and then have all chidren let go of the chute at exactly the same time.
If there isn't any wind, the chute will retain its perfect puff shape
and rise straight up into the air.

This is especially fun outdoors on a windy day. Indoors it may go up to the ceiling.

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WAVES
While  holding  the parachute tightly, participants move their arms
up and down to make small and large waves.

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TREASURE UNDER THE SEA
Place a variety of 'treasures' (anything you want) into a treasure box under the parachute. Make waves (above) as if in a Sea Storm. Send divers to retrieve called out items one by one from the box.

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CATHEDRAL or CIRCUS TENT
1. With the parachute lowered, players raise their arms (and the chute) as high as possible.
2. Once the chute is high, on a signal-all take  3-4 big steps towards the center.
3. Still holding the chute tightly,
children sit down at the edge of the chute-under what should appear to be a cathedral

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THUNDERSTORM
1. Start off on the floor with all children sitting calmly and
grasping the parachute-this is a gentle breeze.
2. Pretend that it starts raining. As it rains have the children
stand.
3. Oh-oh...the rain is now turning into a THUNDERSTORM! All children
start shaking the chute as hard as they can to simulate the storm.

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PARACHUTE TAG
Lift the parachute high overhead.
Call one child's name and have him/her run  to the other side before
the parachute comes down and tags them.

Variation: You can alter the game by having children skip, crawl or twirl to the other side.
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ONE HAND RUN
1. Have each child hold the parachute with one hand-with the opposite
arm extended straight out for balance.
2. Run clockwise in one direction and then change to counter clock .
Tip: Use music to cue children for changing direction; every time the
music stops, direction is changed.
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NUMBER SWITCH
You need a large chute for this activity.
Depending on the amount of children playing, going around the circle,
number the children. Example: 1-2-3-4-5, 1-2-3-4-5, etc.
Call a number such as "3" and all the "3's" switch places by running
under the chute. Loud with running excitement but fun!

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MERRY-GO-ROUND
Turn the body so that the chute is held with only one hand.
Walk, hop, jump, or skip around holding the chute.
It looks like a merry-go-round!

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SHOE SHUFFLE
Number around the circle 1 or 6 (or adapt numbers according to group size). 
All the number one children remove a shoe and throw it under the parachute.
On the third lift--all those missing a shoe go into the middle, retrieve their shoe and return to their place.
Continue with the other numbers!

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SHAKE HANDS
Have all the players hold the parachute way up high above their heads. Call out two names and have these two players run underneath the parachute, shake hands, then run back out before the parachute comes down. Continue doing this until all the players have had a chance to run under the parachute.

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CAT AND MOUSE
Everyone holds the chute stretched out at about waist height. Someone becomes a mouse and goes underneath. Someone else becomes a cat and goes on top. The rest of the group try to hide the mouse by moving the chute up and down.

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THE FLYING PARACHUTE
Swing the parachute upwards and let it go~ 
Try to keep the parachute floating as long as possible.

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FRUIT SALAD
Each player is given the name of a fruit such as pear, apple, or strawberry.
When the facilitator calls out the name of a fruit, everyone with that fruit name  changes places by running under the parachute. When fruit salad is called out, everyone must swap places with the players on the other side.

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GOING TO THE HAIR STYLIST (This can also be a science demonstration of static electricity!)

1. Have children hold the edtges of the parachute-with one child sitting under it.
2. On signal, the children pull back and forth on the parachute as if they are washing  hair.
3. The child's hair beneath the parachute becomes statically charged because of the rubbing.
4. On signal, swing the parachute up so the child's hair goes up and stays up!(Static charge)
5. The more often the hair is "washed"--the more 'charged' the head of hair becomes.

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USING VARIETY...

PARACHUTE WITH POEMS OR SONGS


THERE WAS A MAN!

Holding onto the parachute, children walk around in a circle.
As they walk they say-

There was a man in our town
Who went for a WALK one day
But the wind blew so hard
He turned around
And WALKED the other way.

Variation: Add to the fun and change the action words to-skip,hop, run, etc.

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WHEN THE PARACHUTE GOES UP SONG

Sung to: "If your happy and you know it"
 
When the parachute goes up
Stomp your feet-
When the parachute goes up
Stomp your feet-

When the parachute is high
And floats up in the sky
When the parachute goes up
Stomp your feet.

Additional verses:

Lift one leg...
Shout hooray!...
Bend your knees...
Wiggle your bottom...
Shake your head-and so on...

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NAME GAME

As the song is sung, have children raise the parachute above their heads.
When a child's name is called--- they run under the parachute. The parachute is slowly lowered in an attempt to trap the child.Play  until all children that would like to try-- have had a turn.
Sung to: Row Row Row your Boat


Up, up, up it goes
Down, down, down it comes
If your name is------- (put in a child's name)
Now's your turn to run

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PARACHUTE GAMES USING BALLS, COTTON BALLS, BALLOONS, JUMP ROPES, BEAN BAGS OR POM-POMS Most games using balls are good for children from 5 to 11...


POPCORN #1

Start with all players holding the chute stretched out. Throw as many soft balls as you have  onto the chute-the  more the better!
Holding the chute tightly, have children bounce the popcorn (balls)
as quickly as they can off of the chute.
Variation: Play this game in two teams. One side of children try to
bounce the balls off the chute, while the other side works at keeping the balls on the chute!

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POPCORN #2
Place a number of beanbags or cotton balls on the chute. Shake the chute to make them rise like popcorn.

Variation:  IN THE WINTER USE COTTON BALL AND CALL IT 'FALLING SNOW".

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BALL ROLL
Have the children try to roll balls into the hole in the center of
the parachute.
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DON'T DROP THE BALL (Team Play)
Place a soft ball of any size in the center. The object of the game
is for each team NOT to let the ball fall off on their side.

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ROLLER BALL
 
Have all players holds the chute stretched tightly.
Place a large ball near the edge.
The object of this game is to try to make the ball roll around the edge of the chute.

 To do this someone starts the ball rolling. As it comes towards you, you lower the edge you are holding, and as it goes past you raise your edge.

When all the players do this smoothly, a wave is created that goes round the edge, pushing the ball in a steady circle. It can not be done without concentration and co-operation!
 
Tip:This game also need practice and co-operation. When mastered it can be a lot of fun! Hyou've done this try speeding up - or change direction.

Variation: Roll the ball at different speeds or change direction.
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ROLL A BALL TO A FRIEND
Place a ball on top of the parachute and have the players roll the ball back and forth to each other. For example, you could tell a specific person to roll the ball to someone that you name. This game encourages cooperation, as the players will have to work together for the first player to get the ball to their friend.

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THE CATAPULT
Place a ball on the parachute and catapult it as high as possible!

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BALLOON FLOAT
While the players are holding onto the parachute, place several balloons on top of the parachute. Count to 3 and then say "up". On the word "up", all the players raise the parachute up over their heads as fast as they can and then bring the parachute down as quickly as possible. Where are the balloons? Keep repeating this game to see how high you can get the balloons to go, or how far you can get them to travel.

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PARACHUTE GOLF
While the players are holding onto the parachute, toss a plastic golf ball onto the parachute. Have the players manuever the parachute to try to get the ball through the hole. When the ball is in the hole, have a caddy go under the parachute to retrieve it and start over. Count the number of waves (golf strokes) it takes the players to get the ball into the hole. Keep track on a scoreboard.

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FLEAS
Need several small balls  such as plastic balls, tennis balls,or table tennis balls...
Put the fleas (balls) on the parachute and challenge players try to get the fleas to jump higher and higher.

The fleas are successfully taken care of at the end of the game-- when they land outside the parachute!

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POM POMS

Put various sized pompoms in the top of the parachute and try to get them into the middle pocket.
 
Variety: form teams with different colors of pom-poms and challenge
them to see which team can get the most of their color into the middle pocket in an alloted time.
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SNAKES (OR WORMS)
Place four to six skipping ropes on the chute. By shaking the chute, the children try to shake them off.

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PARCHUTE PLAY AND SAFETY...

 

Always be sure to check the ground underneath the chute.Outdoors, dry grass is the best play surface. Wet grass can be slippery.
 
Space children and adults evenly around the edge of the chute.
 
Before play review parachute rules. Remind children to play safely-- to listen to instructions-- and not bump heads or run into each other.
 
When facilitating play, a second adult is helpful in fielding children and balls, etc.

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FYI: STORAGE OF THE CHUTE...
A parachute is best stored by taking hold of the center in one hand and then twisting the chute loosely into a rope. Roll it up and stuff it into a bag/sack. The thin nylon sacks sold for the storage of sleeping bags work well.

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