Classic Outdoor Games For Kids

In a circle, arrange chairs facing outward to total one fewer than the number of players. An additional player needs to be in charge of the music. When the music starts, the players walk around the chairs. When the music stops, players sit down in the nearest chair as soon as they can. The one player who does not have a chair is out. One of the chairs is then removed, and the game continues in this manner. The player that sits in the final chair is the winner. This game is traditionally played inside, but it can also be played outside with outdoor furniture and a portable music player.

Though often played on ice while wearing skates in the winter, this game is much safer, though possibly less fun, when played on grass. All the players hold hands in a line. The person at one end of the line skates or runs around, changing directions quickly. The tail of the “whip” of players tends to get moved around with a lot more force than players closer to the front. The longer the tail, the harder it is to hold on. If the players at the end fall off the end of the tail, they can attempt to get back on, perhaps in a position closer to the front.

Divide everyone into two teams, each forming a long line, holding hands, facing the other team. The two teams should be around 20 or so feet apart. The teams take turn calling out, “Red Rover, Red Rover, let come over!” That child leaves their team’s line, runs as fast as they can toward the other line and tries to break through the held hands. If they break through, they get to take someone back to their team. If they don’t, they join the new team. When a team only has one person left, that person tries to break through the other team. If they do not, then their team loses. If they do, they gain a player and play continues. A favorite game in Tudor and Victorian England, this game is yet another variation on tag. The person who is “it” wears a blindfold and tries to tag the other players. Be sure to play this in an area safe from obstructions and other hazards.

A variation of Freeze Tag where the person unfreezing the frozen player has to call out a TV show title. That show then can’t be used again during that game.

In this fun version of Tag, you tag each other’s shadow with your feet instead of tagging their body. Thus, it must be played on a sunny day. The closer to noon, the greater the difficulty.This game can be played anywhere, even in a car or other small space. One person is Simon and starts by saying, “Simon says, ‘[insert action here]’. ” Everyone must then do the action. However, if Simon makes an action request without saying, “Simon says” to begin the request, anyone who does that action is out. The last person still playing in the end will be Simon for the next round.

This game is set up in the same way as Red Light Green Light. One person in the group asks the person in the front, “Mother, may I take steps forward?” The person at the front then says, “Yes, you may.” or “No, you may not.” You can vary your requests by including options such as taking baby steps, spinning steps, leaps or whatever strikes your fancy. Again, the first person to tag the person in the front wins and is the next person in the front.

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