Kids Summer Outdoor and Parachute Games
Physical activities are important for children to ensure good health and energy. Here are some fun outdoor game ideas:
How to Choose Who Is It or Who Goes First.
Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Mo
Children stand in a circle. One player chants the rhyme and points to each player while saying each word, including her/himself. Whoever he/she is pointing at when he/she finishes the last word of the rhyme is "it"or goes first in the game.
Rock, Paper, Scissors
On the count of three, each player puts a hand out shaped like a rock (hand making a fist), a piece of paper (flat hand), or a pair of scissors (two fingers). Rock beats scissors, scissors beat paper, and paper beats rocks.
Parachute games are a lot of fun for both children and adults and are a great way to keep the children entertained and active. Parachute games are great to encourage cooperative, non-competitive play and to reinforce turn-taking and sharing.
Preschool Parachute Games:
Get everyone to spread out around the parachute and hold the edge. Together pull the parachute taut and lower it to the ground. Choose a special word (per example turtle) everyone pulls the chute upwards (don't let go). The parachute will fill with air and rise up like a turtle shell, a roof or an igloo.
Call out a birthday months, names, numbers, colors. Children swap places under the chute before it falls to the ground. Make sure that the children around the edge allow the canopy to fall slowly and that they don't pull the parachute down hard.
On the count of three have children raise their arms and lift the parachute over their head. Then, pull the parachute behind them sitting down on the edge of the chute.
Place a light-weight ball on the parachute. Try to make the ball roll around the parachute.
Lift the parachute high overhead. Call out one child's name and have her/him run, skip, hop,
twirl or crawl to the other side before the parachute comes down and tags her/him
Turn the body to the side and hold the parachute with only one hand. Walk, hop, jump, or skip around holding the chute.
Game: Shark in the Ccean
Let children sit on the floor holding the parachute and his or her legs stretched out underneath it. Let children pretend they are sitting on the ocean with their legs in the water. Let children shake the parachute to make waves. Select one child to be a shark and to disappear under the parachute. The child moves around under the parachute (because of the waves it will be difficult to see where he/she is...The "shark" chooses a victim and grabs him (or touches) her by the feet and the child disappears under the water (parachute.) Now there will be two sharks!
More Kids Summer Outdoor Games:
Decide which player will be "it." When the player (it) tags someone, that player must freeze in place. He/she can't move and must stand with his/her feet apart. Players who haven't been tagged can unfreeze the tagged players by crawling under their legs or touching them. Play continues until all the players are frozen. The last person to be frozen is "it" for the next game.
Hopscotch (see sample hopscotch course)
With chalk draw a hopscotch course. Choose a player to go first. The player tries to toss a pebble into the first box. If he/she misses, the next player takes a turn. If the pebble lands in the box, the player hops on one foot from box to box in order. The player has to be careful not to step on a line and not to step in the box with the pebble in it. (If two boxes are side by side, the player lands one foot in each box.) When the player reaches the last box, he/she hops back from box to box and must pick up the pebble in the box while standing on one foot. After successfully hopping the course, he/she tries to toss his pebble in the second box and so on. If the player makes a mistake or loses his/her balance, he/she leaves the pebble in the last box and it's the next player's turn. This player must hop through the course avoiding the box with the other player's pebble as well as the one with her/his own pebble. The first player to land the pebble in the tenth box and to finish the course wins the game.
(Make your own special play pebble.)
Fun with Bubbles
A jar of bubble liquid will provide hours of giggles and fun. Make your own bubbles and blow bubbles on both a calm and windy day. Try our bubble recipe and make a fun bubble machine.
How many bubbles you can catch with your bubble wand?
How many bubbles can you make? Count them.
Blow bubbles in front of a fan.
Try to catch bubbles before they hit the ground.
Try to catch bubbles with your finger, your feet, your nose, etc.
What you need:
Drinking cup with lid
1 tablespoon liquid soap
1/2 cup water
Knife or scissors
What you need:
Help children cut a small round hole in the opposite side of the cup's opening of the lid for the bubbles to come out. Add the water and liquid soap to the drinking cup. With straw, stir to mix well. Put the lid on. Then, place the straw into the lid opening. Blow through straw to make bubbles. Note: Show small children how to blow into the straw first. Make sure they don't suck the soapy bubble solution.
Other containers to make bubble machines:
Margarine tub containers, juice boxes, or blastic bottles.
4 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup hand dishwashing detergent
1/2 cup corn syrup or glycerin
Combine water and detergent. Add corn syrup or glycerin and stir well. Be careful not to shake the solution. Tip: Experiment with different brands of dishwashing detergents to determine which one works best.
More Kids Summer Outdoor Activities:
Make Paper Airplanes
Create paper airplanes and fly them. Find more easy-to-make airplanes.
On a sunny day, go outside to look for shadows. Move your armsand jump up and down. Jump on each other's shadow. Play shadow tag.
Paint and Write with Water
Fill a container with water and set out big paint brushes. Paint letters, names, or pictures on the floor.
Help your children to set up a car wash and invite your neighborhood children to join in with the fun. You will need a hose with a nozzle, a bucket of soapy water, a sponge, and old towels or rags for drying. Make "Car Wash" signs and let the children soap up and clean their sand toys and riding toys.
Make Sun Pictures
Get a piece of dark-colored craft paper and search for an interesting looking nature item (twig, leaf, flower, etc.). Place item on craft paper and set in the sun. After a few hours remove item to reveal your sun picture.
This is a fun game to play at night. Choose an area to be "home." When someone touches "home," he/she is safe and can't be tagged. Choose a person to be "it." It closes his/her eyes and counts to fifty or one hunderd while the other players are hiding. When finished counting, "it" opens his/her eyes and searches for the other players, using a flashlight. When he/she shines her light on a player, the player is tagged and is out of the game. If a player gets to the "home" base without being tagged, they are safe. The game is over when all players are tagged or safe at "home" base.
Catch a Firefly
Learn more about the firefly at The Firefly Files..
More Fun Summer Links:
The Art and Science of Bubbles