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Unplug the Kids and Play Outside


Potsie: Make a hole in an area of dirt. The object of the game is to be the first person to shoot a marble into the hole. To start the game, each player takes a marble and drops it ten feet or so from the “pot”. Now the players take turns shooting their marble towards the hole. The main rule is that the person who has a marble farthest away from the hole gets to shoot, even if they get to shoot several times in a row. The first person to get the pot gets everyone else’s marbles in that round and a new round starts.

Duck Duck Goose
  All players except the one who has been chosen to be “It” sits on the ground in a circle. The person who is “It” walks around the circle and GENTLY taps the players on head or shoulder saying Duck, Duck until he chooses a Goose. The goose chases “It” around the circle trying to tag him before he sits in the empty space in the circle.

Red Light, Green Light
  One player is “It” and stands a distance away from the other players who are lined up next to each other, facing him. “It” turns away from them and say “Green Light”. The other players run towards him, with the goal of tagging “It”. He says “Red Light” and turns around. Players need to freeze and if “It” sees them move, he calls them out. The first person who tags “It” takes over that spot.

Color Tag
  Choose a course to run. It can be around the house, from one tree to another, from one side of the yard to the other, for some examples. One person is chosen to be “It”. The others go into a huddle and choose a color for each of them to be. Everyone gathers at the starting point. “It” calls out colors. When a players color is called, that person runs the course. “It” tries to tag them before they reach safety. It they are caught, they are “It” and everyone chooses a new color. If that person is safe, the game continues by calling out a new color.

Freeze Tag
  One person is chosen to be “It”. All the other players run away from “It”. If they are tagged, they have to freeze until another player comes and touches them to unfreeze them. All the players are trying to run to the spot that was chosen to be “Safe”. When all the players have escaped “It” and got to the safe spot, a new person is chosen to be “It”
  Another way to unfreeze someone is to tag them and call out a tv show, or a color, or an animal.

Flashlight Tag
  Before play, decide on a spot for home base. One person is “It” and gets a flashlight. That person closes his eyes and counts to 20 and the other players move around. “It” opens his eyes and turns on the flashlight. Players are “out” if they are found by the flashlight beam and named before they reach home base.

Human Knot
  All players need to form a close circle. Everyone reaches into the middle and joins hands with two other players. While holding hands, everyone steps back a little bit without breaking the knot. Try to untangle without letting go of anyone’s hands. If you can’t untangle the knot, let go and try again.

Follow the Leader
   One person is chosen to the be the leader and everyone else does what the leader does. You can tap your head, jump on one foot, for example.

Obstacle Course
  You can make an obstacle course and use a stop watch to find out who is the fastest. Crawl under lawn chairs, go through tunnels made from large boxes, hop on a rock path, jump rope, balance something on your head, or dodge the sprinkler. Look around the yard and see what you can come up with.

Target Practice
  Set up plastic cups on a wall, a fence, or a table. Shoot them down with a water gun.

Slippery Slide
   Make a slippery slide using a 4 1/2 by 12 ft piece of heavy plastic. Place on lawn and water down or place near a sprinkler.

Make a Backyard Football Goalpost:

Two 48 inch (½ inch diameter) wooden dowels
3 pool noodles
2 pool noodle connectors
  Mark two spots five feet apart. Set the dowels at each spot six inches into the ground, then slip a noodle over each dowel. Put the connectors at each end of the third noodle and place it on top of the other two for the crossbar. The crossbar can be lowered or raised for the different ages of the players. Now your backyard can be a football field.

Four Square
   Draw a large square with chalk. Divide the square into four parts. 2 to 4 players can play the game using a good bouncing ball. Each player takes turns bouncing the ball to another players, who in turns bounces it to another player. When the ball bounces in a square but is missed by a player, that is a point against that player. If the ball doesn't hit into the square, that is a point against the person hitting it in.
The player who ends up with the most points, loses.

Glow in the Dark Ring Toss
Glow Sticks with connectors, such as the ones to make bracelets
Playdough, clay, or putty
Shallow tray
   Make rings using glow sticks and connectors. Tape 4 activated glow sticks to the top of the ruler. Use the putty to attach the ruler to the middle of the tray. Tuis is a great game to play in the dark inside or outside.

Go for a nature walk and collect items such as leaves, small stones, and sticks. Make a collage with these items gluing them onto a poster board or construction paper. Have an adult help with hot glue if needed.

Make a waterscope and watch life under the water (Adult supervision recommended)

Can opener
Empty coffee can
Duct tape
Plastic wrap
Wide rubber band
  Use the can opener to remove the bottom of the of the coffee can. (you may need an adults help.) Cover the sharp edges with duct tape. Stretch the plastic wrap tightly over one end of the can. Make is smooth with no wrinkles. Put the rubber band around the wrap to keep it secure against the can and then duct tape it to keep it very tight. Put the covered end into the water and look inside the can. It will magnify anything in the water for you to see it better. Make sure you are safe and with an adult.

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