Kids games


Water Balloon Races

Form teams for these relays.

  • Balance balloons on tennis rackets, and race to a turn-around line and back.

  • Have each team member race with a water balloon between his or her knees.

  • Form pairs. Place a water balloon between partners’ waists, and challenge them to make their way to a line and back without breaking their balloon.

Squirt Bottle Games


Use empty dish detergent bottles for these games:

  • Squirt and Fill — Form two teams. Each team stands in a semi-circle and chooses one person to be “It.” It holds a small plastic bowl. Everyone else gets a squirt bottle filled with water. On “go,” each team squirts water into its bowl. The team with the fullest bowl wins.

  • Soak Down — Each team uses shaving cream to make a “hat” on one of their teammates. Players stand around this person and wash away the foam with their squirt bottles. The team with the first clean player wins.

Team Games

  • Wacky Volleyball — Use a regular volleyball net or tie a rope across an open area. Swish a trash bag in the air to fill it with air, then close it quickly and tie it with a twist-tie. Use the bag as a volleyball until it deflates, then refill.

  • Centipede Obstacle Course — Teams line up, and players place their hands on the waist of the person in front of them. The centipede maneuvers through these obstacles: walk along a 2×4 beam, stomp on balloon “ants,” step over a low fence, and duck under a limbo rod.

Wacky Sprints

  • Kids love races; add food (that’s not wasted) or water, and you have a home run.

  • Give each contestant a 2-foot piece of red licorice on a table. Have contestants bend at the waist and race to eat all the licorice without using their hands.

  • Contestants race 10 yards and put four saltine crackers in their mouths. The first to chew and whistle wins.

  • Contestants race 10 yards, pick up a squirt gun, and extinguish a candle placed on a table 5 feet away.

  • Contestants race under tables and back.

Creation Racing Game


This is a fun outdoor racing game that teaches kids about God’s creation.

Form two teams and designate a goal line. Give each team a copy of the following instructions.

The 7 steps:

  • Lead a blindfolded person to the goal line to represent night. At the goal line, have the person remove his or her blindfold to represent day and return to your starting place. Everyone shout, “Day one! It is good!”

  • Carry a small container of water to the goal line, drink it, and run back to represent water and sky. Everyone shout, “Day two! It is good!”

  • Carry a handful of dirt to the goal line to represent the earth. Make a small hill with it and then return. Everyone shout, “Day three! It is good!”

  • Carry a small stick to the goal line. Draw a sun, moon, and star in the dirt to represent the lights. Return and everyone shout, “Day four! It is good!”

  • With two pieces of paper, make a bird to represent flying creatures. Carry the bird to the goal line, leave it, and return. Everyone shout, “Day five! It is good!”

  • Using small sticks, make a human figure to represent humankind. Carry the person to the goal line, leave it, and return. Everyone shout, “Day six! It is good!”

  • All teammates run to the goal line and sit in a circle. Everyone shout, “Day seven! Day of rest!”

  • Tell teams they’re to race to complete the seven steps. A different person in each team must perform each step. Don’t provide props for teams; part of the fun is in finding the needed items.

Frog Feet Relay

  • Form two teams. Have the teams line up at one end of the room. Give the first person in each line a pair of swim fins. On “go,” the first person must put on the fins, run to other end of the room and back, remove the fins, and pass them to the next teammate who’ll do the same thing. Continue until all the children have gone. (Hint: Children will have to run backward, as it’s too easy to trip walking forward in swim fins.)

Summer Relay

  • Run a relay where kids don beach apparel before running back to their side. Form teams of six and have them line up on one side of the room. For each team, have six items of beach gear, such as sunglasses, floppy hats, large flip-flops, and beach towels at the other side of the room. On “go,” the first person in each line must run to the pile and get one of the pieces, put it on, and return to his or her team. The next person in line takes this item, puts it on, runs to the other side of the room, and puts on another item. This person returns and passes both items to the next team member who does the same thing. The relay is over when team members return to their teams with all of the items.

Relay Race

  • Have children line up for a relay game. Once enough children for two teams of four people have gathered, randomly choose children for each team. Have three or four different activity stations, such as jump roping, balloon popping, or even song-singing (where children must sing the first line to their favorite song). Children must perform the activities in a sequence before running back to their teams and tagging the next kids who’ll then perform the activities. Have two teams compete at a time. Winning team members each receive two tickets; the other team members receive one each.

Duck, Duck, Goose

  • Have the kids form a circle sitting on the floor.  One child walks around the circle tapping each child on the head and reciting the work “Duck” as they do so.  When they tap the child they wish to select, they say/yell “Goose.”  That child then has to get up and chase the child who selected them (the “tapper”) around the circle.  The tapper tries to get back to the spot vacated by the Goose before the Goose catches and tags them.  The Goose becomes the tapper for the second round.

Keep Away

  • Have the kids stand in a circle.  Select one, or a small group of kids, to be in the middle of the circle.  The kids on the outside throw a ball to other kids in the circle trying to keep the kid(s) in the middle from intercepting the ball.  If a child in the middle of the circle does get the ball, they trade places with whoever threw the ball.

Hot Potato


  • Have the kids stand/sit in a circle.  They pass/throw an object (with a large enough group you can use more than one) around the circle as music plays.  Whoever has the object when the music stops is out.

Red Light, Green Light


  • All students line up against one wall.  The leader/student “caller” stands at the opposite wall facing away from the large group. When the caller calls “Green Light” the kids from the group move towards the caller.  If the caller turns and yells “Red Light,” those approaching the caller must stop immediately.  Anyone who makes any additional motion after “Red Light”

Simon Says


  • Kids line up in lines facing the leader in the front of the room.  The leader tells kids to do things (jumping jacks, turn around, touch nose, touch elbow, quack like a duck, whatever you can think of).  If the leader says “Simon Says” before the instruction (as in “Simon says quack like a duck”), the kids do the activity.  If the leader does not say “Simon Says,” then the kids should not do as instructed.  For example, if the leader says “Simon says spin in circles,” kids should spin in circles.  When the leader instructs “Stop,” the kids should not stop because the leader did not give the command “Simon Says Stop!”

Dodge Ball (inside version)


  • There are many versions of dodge ball.  Here is a great one for more confined spaces.  Have the kids line up in a large circle.  Designate a small circle/square inside.  Put one group of kids in that area.  Kids in the outer circle try to throw the balls (I advice you use foam balls or even beach balls) at the kids in the inner circle/square.  Once a child is hit, they have to leave the game.  Hits to the head to do not count.  Once the first inside group is eliminated (or at set time intervals) put a new group of kids in the center circle.

Follow the Leader


  • This is a simple and fun game.  Have the kids line up single file. The leader (first kid in line) make outrageous motions, etc. as he walks around the room.  The kids behind must follow the lead of the person in front.  For a competitive game, set up two lines and take players out as you notice them not following the leader.

Parachute Game


  • I am always amazed by how even older elementary aged kids love this simple game.  This one requires a little more preparation because you’ll need one of those cloth multi-colored parachutes and some balls.  Just have the kids circle around the parachute, throw the balls in, and you can have all kinds of fun.  Have them try to keep multiple balls airborne. Try to hit the ceiling.  Try to have the kids roll the balls off one side of the parachute.  The possibilities are endless.

Musical Chairs


  • Set up a number of chairs less than the number of kids playing (For small groups use one less chair.  For larger groups you might want to consider two or three less chairs).  As you play music, the kids walk around the chairs.  When the music stops, the kids scramble to find an empty seat and sit down.  Any child left standing is out.  Remove another set of chairs and start the second round with the remaining players until only one seat is left.