Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Howard W. No more duck, duck, goose for this crowd. School-age kids are more sophisticated than preschoolers when it comes to games. They can play more complex games, juggle multiple roles, and enjoy group of kids clipart challenge of figuring out strategies.
Getting Started Some kids will take as much active play as they can get, while others enjoy less. Whether it’s a birthday party or a summer picnic, games are a great way to involve all kids in being active. Grade school is a time of building identity and self-esteem, so encourage every kid in your group to enjoy the game and find ways to make sure that everyone is able to participate. The following games are great for any outdoor event, and we’ve included some rainy-day games too.
Game: Snake in the Gutter Number of kids: 6 or more. How the game is played: Depending on the number of kids, make at least three kids the snakes. Have the snakes form the gutter by standing in a line with wide spaces between them, facing the rest of the kids, who should be at a distance. The children attempt to run through the gutter without being tagged by a snake. Those who get tagged are now snakes and stay in the gutter. What the game teaches: Agility, problem-solving.
Game: Giants, Wizards, and Elves Number of kids: at least 4, but best for larger groups. How the game is played: This is a whole-body game based on Rock, Paper, Scissors. To be a giant, raise your arms high above your head. To be an elf, place your hands alongside your ears with index fingers extended. Divide the kids into two teams with a space of about 4 feet between them.
Direct each team to retreat a few feet for a huddle to decide which they will be: giants, wizards, or elves. In their huddles, each team decides what they will be, plus a backup choice. Then they come back to their 4-feet-apart stance. On a count of three, each team yells what they are. Anyone who is tagged becomes part of the opposing team.
Tips for adults: A simper version of this game, called Crows and Cranes, works well for younger children. In this variation, the adult designates one team as Crows and the other as Cranes. The teams line up in the same fashion as above. The adult chooses the chaser team by yelling either “Crows! The identical sounds at the beginning of the words add to the suspense as the teams wait to find out who will chase and who will flee.
What the game teaches: Agility, listening skills, teamwork. Number of kids: at least 4. The children partner up, and one kid in each pair is blindfolded. The partner who can see leads the blindfolded partner by the arm. The object of the game is to get the blindfolded partner to throw the ball at another blindfolded player, then to get the second blindfolded partner to pick it up and throw it at another blindfolded player. If a player is hit twice, the pair is out and heads to the sidelines to watch the game.
Kids can help their blindfolded partners defend by telling them when to duck or move in a particular direction. Tips for adults: Before playing, remind kids that safety is important. Have the blindfolded kids walk with hands up in front of them for “bumpers” to avoid collisions. Demonstrate how to lead a partner by the arm and direct him or her to the ball: “Go forward three steps. Now squat down and reach out with your left hand. Remind the kids to tune in to their partner’s voice.
Also, be sure that kids aren’t throwing the balls at very close range. For a fun variation, have kids lead partners without touching, only with the voice. When you’ve played once, switch the blindfold to the other player. This game can also be played by a group of adults! What this game teaches: Teamwork, listening, motor skills. Tag Games Most of us probably remember playing tag as kids, chasing everyone amid shouts of “Tag, you’re it! Tag is a great outdoor game, providing kids with great exercise and lots of excitement.