These are classic games, tried and true. They have entertained youth for centuries
and our generation is no different. Our four-to-six years-olds, as well as older children,
will be delighted.
- Mother, May I?
One youngster is chosen Mother/Father. He faces the others, who line up horizontally
about 20 feet away.
To the first child, Mother gives an order. It can be a baby step or a giant step or three medium steps
or 2 hops or one zig-zag step or whatever Mother can dream up.
The point here is to be the first to get to Mother. But in order
to obey the command given, the youngster
must ask, "Mother, may I?" before he can move.
When Mother OK's it, the individual moves ahead as instructed. Mother may
also say, "No," then give another instruction. Mother goes down the line and tells
each child what to do.
Repeat until the winner reaches Mother and, without being
noticed, tags her. This youngster in now Mother.
If Mother the sees the other
trying to tag her, the player has to return to the starting line.
- Red Light, Green Light!
The set up is similar to "Mother, May I?" One child is chosen the police officer.
He stands facing the other children who are 20 or so feet away. The players line up
horizontally and widely spaced.
The officer turns his back and yells, "Green light!" Then he counts to five.
In the meantime, all the players rush forward as quickly as possible. When the
officer reaches five, he shouts, "Red light!" and whirls around to again face the others.
If he catches anyone moving, that child is out.
The first to touch the officer without being seen is the winner and the next officer.
- Red Rover
This game needs plenty of open space--a grassy area is ideal.
Youngsters divide into teams and a captain is chosen for each.
Each team forms a line and faces each other, about twelve feet apart.
Members lock hands.
The captain from the first team begins by shouting the name of one player from the
opposition. "Red Rover, Red Rover,
send ______________on over!" That person runs his hardest, charging the other
line, trying to break through.
If he succeeds, he goes back to his team. If he doesn't, he becomes a part of the other team.
Now the second captain yells a name, and his side tried to maintain the line to garner another player.
Repeat until all the children are on one team, the winners!
- Hot and Cold
This is great activity to use in a pinch. If you've run out of ideas or don't'have enough children
for the bigger, more boisterous games, try this one.
Pick a small object to be hidden and show it to the children. The youngsters hide their eyes or better, go into another room. Hide
the item, then call for the players to return.
As they hunt, walk around the area. If a player is far away from the object,
say, "___name)___is 'cold.'" When one comes closer,
"__________ is 'warm,'" when someone is very near, "__________ is 'hot.'"
Of course, whoever discovers the object is the winner.
Pre-school and older children will have a marvelous time with these games. Plan them and they will come!