Superb Kids Outdoor Games.
“Get Them Away From The Idiot Box & Make Them Exercise Their Muscles!”

“O! Genie of the magic lamp, give me some fabulous kids outdoor games ideas!”

“Your wish is my command, my master! Here they are…”


All the wonderful Moms & Dads out there, this Genie friend of yours has put together a superb collection of kids outdoor games. All you have to do is get them pumped up and allow them the freedom they need to get started.

It’s time for the neighborhood kids to get together and hit the streets rather than just sitting in front of a computer or T.V. screen killing alien invaders and bashing virtual wrestlers or watching sitcom reruns. There is plenty to do and learn outdoors.

boys with balls

Most of the kids outdoor games require nothing except enthusiastic children, more the better. The biggest investment parents have to make is buying a box of chalk, some markers and in a few cases some balls.

Let’s encourage our kids to go out and play more and more outdoor games as they are environmentally friendly, encourages interpersonal interaction and support, sharing and acquiring leadership skills. Kids will enjoy lots of fresh air with plenty of physical exercise while playing for hours.

All the games explained below have appropriate age group suitability mentioned clearly. This can be used as a broad guideline to decide which game you should choose for your kid depending on her and her friend’s age group. Some games may be too childish for older age groups and some might be too tricky for the younger ones.

Don’t forget to check-out the Kids Party Games sections where you will find many games that can easily be custom tailored to meet the requirement of a outdoor games. There are no boundaries…

Your own passion, innovation & creativity will shine!

This is the Secret Mantra that can make anything scintillating…

Before we move forward to explore the brilliant kids outdoor games ideas, do keep in mind that there is more in store for you in the following outdoor games sub categories:

So Cut Loose and…

Mob the greens n’ hit the lanes, twinkle in the eyes of all the lovely names. Call up the Katies’ n’ gang up with James’, Set the backyard alive by playing Kids Outdoor Games!

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Jumping Jack

Age Group: 8-12 years

Game Objective: In this kids outdoor game the kids have to dodge the jumping and bouncing balls.

Game Learning: Alertness & physical flexibility.

No. of Players: At least 10 kids.

Materials Required:

  • A piece of chalk.
  • 3 soft bouncy balls.
  • A flat & clear surface.

How to Play:

  • Draw a large circle. The diameter of the circle should be large enough so that kids can freely move inside it.
  • Make 2 teams. “Dodgers” & “Bouncers”
  • Dodgers will move inside the circle and spread out evenly.
  • Bouncers will stand around the circumference of the circle with some steps away in order to gather the jumping bouncy balls.
  • Give 3 bouncy balls to the Bouncers. (Number of balls will depend on the number of players per team. 3 balls are ideal for a team of 5 bouncers)
  • When the game starts the Bouncers will try to tag the Dodgers in the circle by throwing bouncy balls to them at one bounce (not directly)
  • If a ball hits a Dodger, he will be “Out” of the circle.
  • Mission is to tag all the Dodgers Out of the circle.
  • Bouncers have to position themselves around the circle in such a manner that they throw as well as gather the stray bouncy ball with minimum running around.
  • Once all the Dodgers are Out, teams will swap the roles.

My Tip :

  • Fix the time limit and start a contest. Which teams “Bounces Out” the other at the earliest.

Locked Twins

Age Group: 4 to 9 years

Game Objective: In this kids outdoor game kids have to run around an obstacle course to finish the race, but with a twist!

Game Learning: Coordination

No. of Players: 8 or more

Materials Required:

  • Nil

How to Play:

  • Divide the kids into pairs.
  • Couple each pair’s inner legs by tying their shoes laces together.
  • Set an obstacle course for each pair say “around the bush or tree”, “sit on the chair”, “kick the ball” etc.
  • Mark start line and the finish line.
  • As the race starts the pairs have to run, jump, hop…do whatever to complete the obstacle course and WIN!

My Tip :

  • This is a great ice breaker activity for a kid’s birthday party, helps them to break the shackles and get into the groove!

Skully

Age Group: 8 to 12 years

Game Objective: A traditional American kids outdoor game in which players have to toss their markers in specified areas to win!

Game Learning: Just fun!

No. of Players: 2 to 6

Materials Required:

  • A chalk.
  • A marker for each player.(Typically any flat, round & smooth metal or plastic piece of 1 inch to 2 inches in diameter. Like Milk bottle cap, soda bottle cap or large plastic buttons. The underside of the milk bottle cap can be filled with candle wax to make it sturdier.)

How to Play:

  • Draw a Skully court or course on a smooth flat surface, preferably concrete surface like street pavements, backyards etc.
  • Click here to see the game layout for better understanding.
  • Typical dimension is 6 ft X 6 ft. (square)
  • Every player has to play individually in this kids outdoor game.
  • Every player will start from “Start” line turn wise.
  • Players have to toss their markers in the numbered boxes sequentially, first from 1 to 13 and then from 13 to 1.
  • A player will get subsequent chances if the marker tossed by him lands in the correct boxes.
  • If a player’s marker falls “On the Line” then it is considered wrong and the next player’s turn will come.
  • A player’s marker, thrown by him during his previous chance, will remain in the Skully court till his next turn.
  • A player can strike another player’s marker “Out” of the Skully court with his own marker during his turn. In that case, that player (whose marker has been stroked out) has to restart his game from the very beginning.
  • In case, while attempting to toss the marker in Box 13, a player’s marker instead falls in “0” marked trapezoids surrounding the Box 13, then, he has to go back and start from Box 1 again.
  • The player who completes the Skully court successfully WINS this kids outdoor game!

My Tip :

  • This is a very engaging game that can keep the kids busy outdoors for hours without getting tired. There are some variations to this game that, if applied, would make this kid outdoor game spicier. Do come back here after some time to check out those variations.

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Butts Up!

Age Group: 8 to 12 years

Game Objective: A kids outdoor game in which players have to save their Bums!

Game Learning: Catching and throwing!

No. of Players: 4 and above.

Materials Required:

  • A tennis ball.

How to Play:

  • Find a wall in the neighborhood.
  • The area in front of the wall should be clear and obstacle free.
  • All the players will stand in front of the wall.
  • To start with, a player will throw the tennis ball onto the wall and on the rebound all the players will try to catch it at ONE bounce.
  • The Catcher will again throw the ball onto the wall and the game continues until someone makes one of the following fouls :
    • While throwing the ball onto the wall, the ball bounces on the ground first and then hits the wall.
    • The Catcher trying to catch the ball fumbles and drops the ball onto the ground.
    • The catcher catches the ball rebounding from the wall either directly or after 2 bounces.
    • If the player is hit by the ball rebounding from the ball.

  • The player committing any of the above fouls has to run to touch the wall before the ball, gathered and thrown by another player, strikes the wall.
  • If that player fails to do so then he must lean against the wall, bent over with his butt in the air and wait in that position till another player’s throw hit him on this Bum!
  • Three such penalties and that player is “Out” of the game.
  • The game will continue till all the players get Out one by one and the last player left WINS this kids outdoor game!

My Tip :

  • To make this exciting kids outdoor game faster do not let any player hold the ball for more than a second. Let the kids be on their toes.

Flip The Coin

Age Group: 6 to 12 years

Game Objective: A kids outdoor game in which players have to flip the coin using a ball.

Game Learning: Just fun!

No. of Players: All the kids in the party

Materials Required:

  • Just a Coin.

How to Play:

  • Draw two parallel lines 6 feet apart.
  • Keep a coin at the centre.
  • Make two kids stand behind each line.
  • First player will throw the ball on the coin with an intent to flip it.
  • The Second player has to catch the ball after it has bounced from the ground.
  • He will then do the same and this will continue at a fast pace.
  • Hitting the coin will carry one point and flipping it will account for two.
  • If a player drops or misses the catch one point will be deducted.
  • The player who totals 15 points first WINS!!!

My Tip :

  • A very simple yet enticing outdoor game that can be played anytime and anywhere with just 2 kids.

Chain Chain

Age Group: 5 to 12 years

Game Objective: A kids outdoor game in which kids have to tag each other in a special way.

Game Learning: Just fun!

No. of Players: More the merrier!

Materials Required:

  • Nil

How to Play:

  • Choose a large play area, preferably a play ground.
  • Choose an “It”.
  • All the kids will disperse around the field and “It” will try to Tag them.
  • A kid once tagged will join “It” by holding hands and chase other kids to tag.
  • Every player, who is tagged, will join the Chain which will grow in length gradually.
  • This will continue till the last player is left who is the Winner!!!

My Tip :

  • This fun kids outdoor game becomes funnier when numbers of players are more than 10. With ever increasing length it becomes difficult to control the chain as kids try to run in separate directions trying to tag the remaining players.
  • To make the game challenging split the chain into groups of 3 or 4 kids.

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Bumpy Quarters

Age Group: 4 to 12 years

Game Objective: A kids outdoor game in which kids have to catch the ball in their quarter.

Game Learning: Catching, Alertness & Lots of fun!

No. of Players: 4



Materials Required:

  • A volleyball or a basketball.

How to Play:

  • Choose a flat clear area.
  • Mark a big Square, say 10 steps by 10 steps.
  • Divide it into 4 equal quarters.
  • Each player will occupy one quarter.
  • Players have to bounce the ball in another player’s quarter.
  • That player has to catch the ball and bounce it to another player’s quarter
  • If the player fails to catch the ball then the player who had thrown it to him will earn one point.
  • The game will continue till a player totals 15 points and WINS!!!

Game Variation :

  • Play with 2 balls to make the game faster and more challenging.

My Tip :

  • Make the game faster such that the players don’t get enough time to think which way the ball is coming and going!

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hopscotch

Islander

Age Group: 6 to 12 years

Game Objective: In this kids outdoor game the Islander who has strayed in the sea has to return to his Island.

Game Learning: Just Fun!

No. of Players: 5 to 8

Materials Required:

  • A flat-round marker for tossing.

How to Play:

  • Draw a circle roughly of 2-3 feet diameter on a plain and clear ground.
  • Choose an “Islander”.
  • The Islander has to stand inside the circle (his island) with his back towards the other players.
  • Rest of the players will spread around behind the Islander.
  • The islander will toss the Marker behind him, over his head.
  • Other players standing behind him will try to catch the marker.
  • If the marker is caught then the Islander is “Out” and the “Catcher” will become the next Islander.
  • If the marker is not caught by any of the players and drops on the ground then the Islander has to reach the marker and step on it by taking as many jumps as the number of letters in his/her name.
  • For e.g. Islander name is George, then George will take 6 jumps to reach and step on the marker.
  • If he is not able to reach the marker in the designated jumps then he is “Out” and the game will restart with a new Islander.
  • If he successfully reaches the marker within the designated jumps then, he has to bring the marker back to the circle (Island) by limping on one leg and kicking the marker simultaneously.
  • In this process the Islander will get exactly the same number of kicks as the number of letter in his/her name. That means Islander George will get 6 kicks to bring the Marker back to the Island.
  • If the Islander fails he is Out but if he succeeds he will Win and choose the next Islander!

My Tip :

  • This kids outdoor game is a fun game that kids enjoy the most. This game originates from India where it is called “Roti” which means Traditional Indian Bread round in shape.

Kick The Can

Age Group: 8-12 years

Game Objective: The objective of this kids outdoor game is to tag all the players one by one.

Game Learning: Physical agility.

No. of Players: 4 or more.

Materials Required:

  • An empty soda can.

How to Play:

  • Choose a play area which has got some open space as well as lot of hiding spots. For e.g. A park with lots of trees and buses, your own neighborhood etc.
  • The play area should be clear to all the players.
  • Designate a “Jail” somewhere around the center of the play area.
  • Jail can be a circle distinctly drawn on the ground or a back yard or a stair case etc.
  • Place an empty can in the centre of the open space of the play area. It should be in clear view from the Jail.
  • Choose an “It”.
  • ”It” will stand near the can with his eyes closed while another player will come quietly and “Kick the Can” to a fair distance.
  • ”It’ will now rush to retrieve the can and bring it back to its base position. In the meantime, all the other players will hide around the pre decided play area.
  • ”It” will search for the other players.
  • If “It” sees a player he has to Tag him by calling out his name and hiding location loudly and rush back to tap the Can with his foot.
  • If the tagged player, after having his name called out by “It”, reaches and kicks the Can before “It” he is Free again.
  • If he fails then “It” will lock him in the Jail.
  • ”It” will tag all the players’ one by one and get them locked up in Jail.
  • If a non tagged player kicks the Can by dodging the eyes of “It” then the first player who was Jailed will be set free again.
  • When all the players are tagged and Jailed by “It” the round ends and the first player who was captured will become the new “It”

Game Variations: Set the rule beforehand that “It” instead of just sight tagging the players has to run and touch tag the players. In that case, the rule, where “It” has to rush back to the Can and tap it after calling out other player’s name and location in order to complete the Tag cycle, will become redundant.

My Tip :

  • To make this kids outdoor game a contest, specify a time limit and the “It” who has captured and jailed most number of players within that time frame WINS!

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My Favorite Country

Age Group: 7 to 10 years

Game Objective: Another kids outdoor game of run and tag but with a different spin.

Game Learning: General Knowledge

No. of Players: 4 to 8 kids.

Materials Required:

  • A piece of chalk.

How to Play:

  • Make a big circle on the ground and divide it into as many sections as the number of players (like a pizza).
  • Each player will choose a country name of his choice.
  • The names of the countries will be written in each of the sections.
  • The kids will stand around the circle with one foot inside their chosen country section and other outside the circle.
  • Choose a “Captain”.
  • ”Captain” will say, for example: “My favorite City is Ottawa.
  • The kid who has chosen Canada as his country (Ottawa is the capital of Canada) will stay in circle while other players will run in all the directions (including the Captain).
  • He has now become “It”.
  • In the meantime, “It” has to quickly spell out Ottawa loudly and then yell “Stop”.
  • At this, all the kids running in different direction must home to halt and turn towards “It”.
  • Among the players dispersed all around the field “It” has to choose a player whom he thinks he can tag easily by taking the number of steps/ jumps as the number of alphabets in his chosen country (in this case Canada, which has 6 alphabets).
  • If “It” tags the chosen one successfully, then, he Wins and becomes the Captain in the next round, else, the chosen one becomes the Captain.

My Tip :

  • This simple kids outdoor game helps the kids learn the countries and their capitals in a fun way. Try replacing countries with state names and respective capitals. Don’t forget that your child spelling skills are also getting polished simultaneously.

kid skateboard

Fugitives

Age Group: 9 to 12 years

Game Objective: This a super adrenalin pumping kids outdoor game that will give the kids a real feel of the Action!!!

Game Learning: Coordination and planning

No. of Players: At least 8 kids.

Materials Required:

  • Some bicycles.
  • Some Roller Skates.
  • 2 pairs of toy Walkie-Talkies.
  • Some flash lights or some toy guns with a laser light.

How to Play:

  • Make two teams.
  • One team will be “Cops” and other will be “Fugitives”
  • Designate a play area in the neighborhood that has minimal traffic and lot of lanes and by lanes.
  • Fugitives will be given bicycles and a pair of walkie-talkie.
  • Cops will be given skates, a pair of walkie-talkie and flashlights/toy gun.
  • When the game starts all the Fugitives will disperse around within the play area on their bicycles.
  • After 2 minutes Cops will start hunting for them on their skates.
  • Fugitives can ride their bikes in the lanes and by lanes dodging the cops. If the situation arises Fugitives can also park their bikes in a safe area and hide somewhere.
  • Cops have to Tag the Fugitives by getting close to them and flashing the flash light on their faces.
  • Both the teams can use their respective walkie-talkie to coordinate and plan their moves.
  • When all the Fugitives are captured/Tagged, game ends and new game will start with roles swapped.

Wolf & Lambs

Age Group: 5-9 years

Game Objective: A kids outdoor game in which lambs have to return home before being captured by the Wolf.

Game Learning: Running & counting.

No. of Players: 5-10 kids

Materials Required:

  • Nil

How to Play:

  • This game has to be played in a open space.
  • Choose a “It” among the kids.
  • Draw a Start line and a Finish line with at least 20 yards gap between the two.
  • ”It” will play the role of “Wolf” and will stand behind the Finish line with his back towards the other kids.
  • Rest of the kids will play the role of “Lambs” and will stand behind the Start line.
  • Kids will chant in unison "What's the time, Mr. Wolf?”
  • Wolf will reply by telling any time he wants like: “4 o’clock”.
  • Lambs on the other end will respond by taking that many forward steps towards the Wolf.
  • Every time the Wolf calls out a time the lambs will come closer to him step by step.
  • This will continue till the Wolf replies by saying “Dinner Time!” and turns around to face the Lambs.
  • At this very moment all the Lambs will start running back to the Start line and the Wolf will chase them.
  • The kid who is tagged by the Wolf before crossing the Start line will become the next Wolf.

Game Variation :

  • A variation of this game is “Sinking Ship” in which the “Crew” will ask “How much time is left Captain?” If “Captain” replies 4 hours, all the kids will take 4 steps OR jumps towards him. The kid to reach the “captain” first WINS!!!

My Tip :

  • This kids outdoor game can be played as a birthday party game as well.

Kick Bowling

Age Group: 8-12 years

Game Objective: A kids outdoor game in which kids have to play bowling with a football.

Game Learning: Aiming.

No. of Players: 4 and above

Materials Required:

  • A football.
  • Some empty soda cans or plastic coke bottles.

How to Play:

  • Fill the bottles half with water and tighten their lids.
  • Place them in the same pattern as Bowling pins but leaving a gap of 6 inches between them.
  • Draw the Start line at some suitable distance.
  • The players have to keep the football on the Start line and kick it such that it rolls along the ground and strikes the bottles.
  • Each player will get 3 chances to strike.
  • After 2 rounds tally the scores and declare the Winner!

My Tip :

  • This kids outdoor game can be played as a birthday party game as well.

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Fish In The Ring

Age Group: 4-8 years

Game Objective: A kids outdoor game for the little one’s in which kids have to toss the ring over each other.

Game Learning: Reflex timing.

No. of Players: 5 and above

Materials Required:

  • Some inflated swimming rings or tubes.

How to Play:

  • Mark a play area. It can be your own front yard or make a big circle if playing in an open area.
  • Make all the kids gather inside the play area and give a ring to each of them.
  • The kids have to run around and toss the rings over each other’s neck.
  • That kid has to remove the tube from his neck try to toss it over to other kid’s neck.
  • Award one point for every correct toss.
  • Let the game continue for the stipulated time period, say 10 minutes.
  • Once the time is over tally the scores and declare the Winner!

My Tip :

  • This kids outdoor game can be played as a birthday party game as well.


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