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When I was a kid, we played outside with the other kids in the neighborhood with most of our free time. We also made the most of recess at school. We kept ourselves quite occupied without any of today's modern technologies. Listed below are some no-tech games that you may have enjoyed as a kid. I sure did. Some can be done indoors. Some can be done by yourself or with just one friend. But most of them are best when done outside with a group of people. Also, most of these games can be changed or improved by making up your own rules. Use your imagination!
Play is voluntary engagement in self motivated activities that are normally associated with pleasure and enjoyment. Play may consist of amusing, pretend or imaginary, constructive, interpersonal (play with others) or intrapersonal (solitary play) interactions. Play is the way that children learn about the environment, their bodies and their place in the world around them.
Play is often thought to be frivolous in nature, but can in fact be very structured or very specific in its goal (e.g. defined games such as sports or computer games). Play skills are determined by the ability to plan and sequence play activities (including new activities), problem solve challenges and generalise skills from one activity/toy to another.
Kid Sense provides Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy services to children with developmental challenges in their movement, play, speech, language, learning and behaviour. We are the longest continually owned private provider of paediatric Occupational Therapy in Adelaide, South Australia.
When the player is unsuccessful, the next player takes a turn. Players resume their turns by throwing the marker on the last box played. The winner is the first player to throw the marker home (#9), and smoothly complete the whole course.
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This game will have everyone giggling. Ask the kids to sit on the floor in a circle. Turn on some tunes and have them pass the potato (a bean bag or soft ball) around the circle as fast as they can. When the music stops, the player holding the potato leaves the circle. Keep going until only one player is left and wins the game.
Excellent design. I love that it folds down for easy storage while not in use (perfect for townhouse/appartment living!) It is super versatile too. As well as all the features the table has (lego, Duplo, Sensory play, arts and craft etc) the top of the table can be laid down without the legs attached for younger babies who have learnt to sit. This truly is a table that our babe will grow with.Thank you so much! We will appreciate this table for years to come!
But would you be surprised if we told you that play makes for an incredibly important part of childhood? So important in fact, that studies have shown that children who have ample play time actually do better in school.
As we age, our brain activity decreases and slows down. There are many types of play that can benefit adults just as much as children. Imagination games, puzzles, and brain games will all test our brains and help us stay sharp. When we play with our kids, it sparks that creativity bug in our brains too! So keep pretending to eat those mud pies!
"Jordan Harrison subtitled his Kid-Simple 'a radio play in the flesh,' and, like the best radio dramas, it seizes and shapes the imaginations that are open to its brilliant virtues... Kid-Simple is a stunning collision of Firesign Theatre, John Cage, The Stinky Cheese Man and Sondheim's Into the Woods, a tribute to both the bangs and the whimpers with which the world ends."
"High double-crossing adventure, comic-book fantasy, and kaleidoscopic imagery...they're all found in Brown-grad Jordan Harrison's dizzying theatrical romp, now enjoying a must-see run at Perishable Theatre... Clearly, he is a playwright worth watching."
"In this story about Moll, a teenage girl who invents a device called the Third Ear, Harrison and [director Darron] West dare to make sound visible and visual elements auditory. It's a play that interlaces science and fantasy while delivering a cacophony of sounds until a world of discordant noise culminates in glorious silence."
We typically think of bubbles as an outdoor activity; this version can be played indoors. Get a plate and straw for each child and put a coin-sized drop of dish soap on it. Mix a little water in until suds form. Each child then puts the end of the straw straight up and down into the suds so that a layer of soap forms over the end of the straw. Blowing very slowly, a single bubble will start to grow! Can you blow a giant bubble? How long can you hold it for?
This indoor game can get a little giggly, so be warned! It is great though, because it is one of those games to play with kindergarten kids up through older grades. Grab any soft ball or rolled up socks and underhand-toss it to a child. Instruct them to toss it to someone else as quickly as possible. Each child repeats this. When does this game end? Who knows? Just get rid of it!
Hot potato variations: If you have enough children for this indoor activity, play short segments of music while they toss the object, stop the music, and the last child to touch it when the music stops is out of the game. Repeat until there is only 1 child.
Depending on the skill level of the stations you create, obstacle courses can be fun indoor games to play with kindergarten-aged children through adults. Here are some ideas for your course that you could put in any order:
This has to be one of the oldest games on planet Earth. It ranks among my favorite indoor games for family get-togethers. Anyone from tot to grandma can play along. (This is a good way to modify hide and seek for smaller kids).
This indoor game usually gets all ages in our family involved. The younger ones often request their older siblings to design a treasure hunt that will lead them around the house in search of some token prize (usually fruit snacks). The challenging part is writing the clever clues that will lead the seekers from point to point until the treasure is located. Adults can be involved and make this as simple as necessary for younger kids to play if they cannot yet read. For instance, using picture clues instead of written clues.
When collecting marbles for this game, make sure to get 1 bigger marble for each kid that is going to play. First, make a circle 3 feet wide out of masking tape or string. Place 3-5 marbles near the center of the circle for each player. Each child takes a turn, with their hands outside the circle, flicking their big marble out of their fist with their thumb towards the marbles in the center. If they knock any marbles out of the ring then they get to keep them and play again. If they miss, then they leave their big marble there until it is their turn again. The winner is the kid with the most marbles when all marbles are knocked out of the ring.
A set of 10 dice can fit in your purse and you instantly have mini games to play at home or wherever you land. These are four of our favorite family indoor games you can play with just a set of dice, paper and pen. The links will take you to instructions on how to play.
These classic paper games are fun, super portable activities (all you need is a sheet of paper and a pen) and require no set up or clean up. If you are looking for indoor games for just two players, these are always good go-tos. What would you add to this list?
Variations: Try holding a tournament. You can get as fancy as you want, writing down the tournament brackets of all the children on paper, or having each child play all other children and see who gets the most wins.
I thought I made this game up. We used to play it in the car, but now I see it is a board game, too. When we played it in the car as kids, we would let the youngest sibling say a word and we would have to come up with a song about the word, In our rules, there was no winner or loser, it was just a fun way to keep us busy in the car.
As kids get to middle school age, games can sometimes get a bit more complicated, but are still a great deal of fun. When your kids are looking for fun games & activities to play at home with friends inside, they could try any of these games.
Playing outside allows kids to develop more advanced motor skills than children who spend most of their time indoors, including agility, balance and coordination. Kids who spend time playing outdoors are more likely to move in ways that challenge their muscles, bones and physical endurance. Outdoor environments give kids the space they need to walk, play and swing. They can play catch. They can crawl under bushes, climb trees and ride bikes.
Swinging may seem like a repetitive playground activity, but it pushes young kids to develop muscles. Other outdoor toys such as bikes, skateboards and scooters also push your child to engage and strengthen their muscles.
According to one study, 87% of people who regularly played outside as kids valued nature as adults. Out of that sample, 84% said they still believe taking care of the environment should be a priority.
Teamwork and imagination are necessary for outdoor play, which allows children to experience positive interactions with their peers. Kids who get consistent time to play outside are more likely to get along with others and find common ground.
However, kids who regularly play outdoors experience more sensory engagement through exploration. These encounters help familiarize younger kids with a range of sensory inputs, helping them learn how to process this information better as they grow up.
Studies have shown that outdoor play helps children build their sense of independence. Parents are usually near, but playing at the park gives children a feeling of freedom they rarely experience in other settings.
Many outdoor and playtime experiences can teach kids to push through uncomfortable situations, building confidence and internal motivation. As a result, kids learn to work through their fears and stress, supporting more positive outcomes in their academic life and future careers.