Let’s Play!

These games are a great way to build summer memories, friendships, and fitness. So turn off the TV, the computer, and go outside and have a good time! Here are a few hints to make these games a “winner”:

  • Change these games for the level and interest of your children.
  • Keep the rules few and simple.
  • Play on soft surfaces and keep it SAFE!
  • Emphasize cooperation and the joy of playing, rather than competition and scores.
  • Encourage children to problem solve and work out their own differences.
  • Be your child’s biggest cheerleader!

Circle Soccer

Materials: playground ball

  1. Stand in a circle and hold hands.
  2. Place the ball inside the circle.
  3. Children try to kick the ball and keep it inside the circle. If the ball goes out of the circle between two people, then both people are out of the game. If a player kicks the ball too high and it goes over someone’s head, then the player who kicked the ball is out of the game. The game continues until there are just one or two players left.

What’s That Jive? (Similar to Red Rover)

Materials: none

  1. Divide the children into two teams and have them stand in a line facing each other 30 to 40 feet apart.
  2. One team calls for a player from the other team with this chant: (Child’s name), (child’s name) What’s that jive? Come on over And give me five.
  3. The team calling the chant holds their hands out in front of them with their palms up. The child called proceeds down their line giving each player “five” by slapping their palms. If the child who is “it” slaps the palms and then slaps under their palms, that child chases “it” back to his or her original team. If “it” is caught, he or she must return to the opposing team, but if not, the chaser must joint “it’s” team.
  4. The game continues with teams taking turns calling players from the opposite side.

Dodge Ball

Materials: large, soft ball

  1. Draw a large circle on the playground with a stick and have all the children stand in the circle.
  2. Choose two children to stand outside the circle and roll the ball at the children in the circle.
  3. The children try to “dodge” the ball as it is thrown, but they must leave the game if the ball touches them.
  4. The game proceeds until there are two children left in the circle. They become the ball throwers for the next game.
  • As the children are hit with the ball, they may stand outside the circle and take turns throwing the ball.
  • A similar game called “sticky ball” can be played. Children must stick their hand to the part of their body hit by the ball. After they are hit three times, they are out of the game.   

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