Posted Feb 22, 2019
Field day (also called Sports Day or Spirit Day) is a fun and festive celebration beloved by kids, teachers, and parents alike because it signifies that the end of the school year is in sight! It is a perfect time for students to let loose and have fun with their friends.
Picture the entire school (or clusters of grades at a time), spread out over your outdoor spaces and cycling through lightly competitive games and activity stations. That’s a lot of students to manage, and it takes focused planning and an army of volunteers to ensure this annual event is successful and safe. Ensure fun is had by all and save time and energy getting everyone organized with SignUp.com!
Set up your simple online sign up sheet with a list of volunteer needs (e.g,. station supervisors, people to bring snacks and water, helpers to set up and clean up) and invite parents to pitch in (via the school newsletter, email, Remind (text), or post a link on your school’s website or Facebook page).
A few helpful hints for planning the most memorable Field Day for your students:
- Set up both traditional and inventive outdoor Field Day games. This will make your event a hit that will be talked about for weeks!
- Add creative twists to your games. Use a timer and a loud air horn to randomly end any games in progress. When the horn goes off, all teams switch to a new game area. Starting the new game immediately means no one may ever really win, but they’ll have too much fun to care!
- For the younger students be sure to choose age-appropriate activities. Avoid games with too many rules which can be frustrating for this age group.
- Don’t forget to set up a Rest Station (tent, if possible, to provide some shade) where students can get some water and a snack, or just sit down if they need to take a break for a few minutes.
- Include the PE staff while planning the Field Day activities. They can help you navigate what sports gear and supplies are available for use during the big event. They are also insiders when it comes to crowd pleasing activities that all age groups will enjoy, i.e. parachute games & obstacle courses.
Below are some can’t-miss hits by age group, and check out even more fun field day games and tips over at SignUp.com.
Bean Bag Toss
Materials Needed: several beanbags (enough for each person on the team to have one), corn hole board, buckets, boxes, or other containers
Divide into teams, draw to see which team gets to go first. Each team member takes a turn tossing their bean bags into the container. The team that makes the most beanbags in the container wins. If there is a tie, have a sudden-death tiebreaker. Alternate turns, one shot each team, first team to score 2 goals wins.
Materials Needed: 20 bowling pins (2 liter soda bottles with water or sand inside to keep it standing).
Have students roll rubber balls or soccer balls to knock them down.
Balloon Pop Relay Race
Materials Needed: inflated balloons and a chair.
Divide into teams, line up. The first student takes a balloon, runs down and places it on a chair, then sits on the balloon until it pops. Once the balloon has popped, the student runs back to their team and tags the next person in line. Continue until everyone on the team has finished. The first team to finish wins.
Kick Ball Challenge
Materials Needed: a kickball or soccer ball
Each student kicks the ball. The student who kicks the ball the farthest wins.
Materials Needed: Several large balloons inflated with air (not helium)
Divide into two teams. Using a large balloon have the teams volley the balloon back and forth. Each time a team allows the balloon to drop to the ground/floor the other team gets a point. First team to 15 wins.
Wet Sponge Relay
Materials Needed: a bucket, large cup, and large sponge (car wash style) for each team
Each team stands in a line facing the same direction. Place a bucket of water at the front of the line and a large cup at the back. The front person holds the sponge. When the game starts they dip the sponge into the bucket to saturate it with water, then pass the sponge over their head to the person behind them. Move down the line passing the sponge over each team member’s head until you reach the student at the end. They wring the sponge into the cup and then run up to the front of the line with the sponge to begin all over again. The team that fills the cup first wins.
Obstacle Station Course
Materials Needed: bubbles, jump ropes, etc.
Set up a fun course that mixes short runs with fun activities stations like a bubble blowing station, jumping jack or jump rope station, etc., The person who completes the course the fastest wins.
Materials Needed: latex balloons-enough for each student, write different activities on slips of paper (for example, 10 jumping jacks, do the chicken dance two times, stand like a flamingo for 10 seconds) and insert one into each balloon, then inflate.
Split students up into groups. Line up students, when the whistle blows the first person on each team chooses a balloon out of a bag/box and sits on the balloon until it pops. They do the specified activity then runs and tags the next teammate. The team who finishes first wins.
Hula-Hoop Ring Toss
Materials Needed: 15 to 20 cones, a mix of small, medium, and large, 5-6 Hula-hoops
Set up the cones on a field or pavement in a grid, each cone about 5 feet apart. Have kids try to toss Hula-hoops over the cones.
Materials Needed: a roll of toilet paper for each team
One member of each team serves as the "mummy." That student stands still while the other team members work together to wrap the mummy up with the roll of toilet paper. The first team to use up the whole roll wins.
Tug of War
Materials Needed: long rope with middle marked with a knot or flag (suggested length between 50-110 feet long)
Create two teams of students, the number of students depends on the length of your rope, between 6-10 students. Teams will pull on the rope until one of the teams pulls the majority of the rope over to one side.
Water Balloon Toss
Materials Needed: Approximately 1 filled water balloon per student
Teams of 2-4 students stand about a foot apart and toss a water balloon back and forth. After each successful toss, each student takes a step back. The last team with an unpopped balloon is the winner.
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