Whether it’s pouring rain, cold, or scorching hot, weather often impacts our physical education plans. We could have scheduled a nature walk or a trip to the playground, but a shift in weather systems can foil our activities.
I like to have a variety of alternatives to do in times such as these and today I’m going to share them with you!
I used to play this all the time as a child! I made a simple version for our homeschool by cutting out squares of non-skid shelf matting. I spread the matting around on the floor, and the players have to hop from “stone” to “stone” without falling into the hot lava.
Put on some music and bust out your best dance moves. You can organize some dances too, like a conga line, the Chicken Dance (one of my personal favourites) and the limbo!
Ball up some white socks and throw them at one another! Don’t get hit or you turn into a snow statue!
This is an easy one to set up.
Stick a long piece of painter’s tape to the floor and encourage your children to walk across the beam without falling off. You can make it more challenging by having them hop from one balance beam to another.
While you have the painter’s tape out, why not set up a game of hopscotch? Use a bean bag to toss onto the squares of the hopscotch area.
If you don’t want to waste painter’s tape, you could always purchase a hopscotch rug and roll it out when you want to play.
Yoga is one of my favourite indoor physical education activities. Roll out the yoga mats and strike a pose! There are many great kids’ yoga DVDs available, and they’re often quite affordable.
Have you ever done 1 minute of hula hooping?! It’s quite the workout! Get out some small hula hoops and challenge your children to keep their hula hoop up as long as they can.
Bean Bag Toss
Set up a target and have your children toss bean bags into it. You can have bowls (each worth a different point value), use a box with cuts holes in it, or you could set up a store-bought bean bag toss game!
Egg Spoon Race
Use tablespoons to carry a plastic egg (like the ones you find in stores before Easter) across the room to a partner. Transfer the egg from your spoon to your partners’ spoon without dropping it and then race back to the starting line.
We have this cute egg and spoon race game that we like to use. When the egg drops, the “shell” cracks and the bean bag yolk falls out. It’s so much fun!
Place a piece of fabric in a child’s back pocket or loosely wrapped around a belt loop. Everyone chases that child and tries to pull the tail out!
Crawling uses many muscles. We love our pop-up tunnel and often take it out when the weather is bad.
Move tables and chairs around and set up a fun obstacle course! We usually crawl under tables, climb over chairs, crawl through boxes, etc. It’s so much fun!
Captain, Yes Captain
When I worked in out-of-school care, this was a favourite game to play. I used to chuckle as the kids tried to keep up with the “commands” the “captain” would shout out.
To play, you first select a “captain”. The captain yells out orders and the crew have to follow the orders.
Here are the orders:
Bow: Run to the front of the boat (front of room)
Stern: Run to the back of the boat (back of room)
Port: Run to the left side of the boat
Starboard: Run to the right side of the boat.
Hit the deck: Lay down on your stomach
Salute: Salute and yell, “Aye, aye captain!”
Scrub the deck: Drop to your knees and pretend to scrub the floor.
Captain’s quarters: Everyone ran towards the captain.
SHARK!: Everyone must run to a designated base. The last player to the base is eliminated.
When my aunt closed her dayhome, she gave us a small 6′ parachute. We’ve gotten so much use out of it! We do all sorts of games, several we got from the Parachute Play book. We simply clear a space in the middle of the living room and start playing our games – our favourite is to try to keep a ball on the parachute while flapping the parachute up and down.
There’s nothing like a game of Simon Says. I like to use especially physical commands such as jumping on one foot, running in one spot, doing jumping jacks, crawling on the belly, sit-ups, etc.
These are just a few of our fun default physical education activities when we can’t get outside. I hope you’ve found something fun for you and your children to do.
What are some of the indoor physical education activities you participate in?
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