Mike Spiller L.T.D.F (License to Deliver Fun)

Early Childhood Games

10,000 Men / Spiller Original

All sing this song and move as the teacher / leader instructs them to do.  . “There was a mighty king (make a crown with your hands) – who had 10,000 men (hold 10 fingers up) – he marched them to the top of the hill (march and move the group in a chosen direction) & marched them down again (reverse the marching direction)  – and when they were up they were up (everyone stretching up on tip-toes)  – and when they were down they were down (everyone on the floor) – and when they were only ˝ way up (everyone standing in a crouched position with hands on knees)  – only three were found.” Call different #s at the end of the song to make different size groups.

B-3 (Big Balloon Bag) / Spiller Original

Stuff a plastic garbage bag with balloons and tie it or tape it off. Make sure the bag is tight by twisting the top of the bag several times. This bag can be used for many activities in your PE class: 1. Have all the students sit in a close group on the floor. Ask the group say the alphabet as they hit the bag in the air. First strike is “A,” Second strike is “B,” etc. 2. Use as a giant Hacky Sac. Have students keep it aloft using only feet. 3. Let your little ones use it as a giant volleyball. 4. Use the bag for every kind of relay possible. 5. Use clear plastic bags and fill each with a different color balloon. Give each team of 5 to 10 students one bag. On the signal to begin, have each team move the bag through an obstacle course or from point A to point B (timed event) by bopping the bag in the air as they move along.

There is really no end of ways to use the Big Balloon Bag. Let the kids be creative!

Bango / Card Game / Posted 12-1-09

This is a great way to play Bingo without having to buy a Bingo Game and have the kids lose all the little pieces.  All you need is two decks of cards and a few kids that like to play.  Get your group together in a circle and deal out one of the decks completely.  It will not matter if a player gets one more card than the others or if it bothers the students deal an equal amount of cards to each and set the rest aside.  Have the student’s place their cards in front of them face up.  If you like, you can have them by number and suit for quicker identification of the cards.  When the player's cards are ready, shuffle the other deck thoroughly.  Flip the top card over and call it out.  The player with this card turns his like card over.  This continues until one of the players has turned over all his cards and shout, "BANGO!"

Bean Bag Hoop Relay / UK / Posted 12-1-09

Children are divided into about six teams and each team has four hoops placed in position across the work area.  Children stand in a line, each with their own beanbag, and take turns to throw their beanbag into each hoop. They then jump inside that hoop, pick up the beanbag and throw into the next hoop. If they miss they must pick up the beanbag and throw again. When they reach the last hoop they run back to their team, touch the person at the front of the line and then run to the back of the line and sit down. The winners are the first team to have everyone sitting down.

Come Home All My Children / Pre School - Acting Out Game / Spiller Original

Have all the students’ line-up on one end of the gym or playing area.  They should be side by side facing the teacher.  The teacher will say, "Come home all my children!" and they will respond, "How shall we come home teacher (or Mrs. ____).  The teacher then will ask them to travel from where they are to the other end of the area in a variety of ways.  "Come home like the wind is blowing very hard" or "come home like you have stickers in your toes (walk on heels)" or "As quickly as possible" or "As happy as possible."  Each child should act-out the best they can as the come home.  Remember to always point-out exceptional efforts.

ConcenPLAYtion / Another way to play the card game of Concentration.  Spiller Original - Posted 12-8-09

This is a game that my friend Flavio and I created while in Switzerland.  Flavio is the son of a gymnast that I coached long ago in the Luzern area.  You place all the cards face down on the table or floor, of course.  Play rock, scissors, paper to see which player will go first.  As in the normal game of Concentration, players are trying to match 2 cards.  If they match, the player takes the cards as points and plays again.  In this new game it is made even simpler to match cards.  Each time a player turns over 2 cards and they DON'T match - the player turns one of the cards over and leaves one face up for the next player to use.  It's that simple.  I have played this with my Sr. mother and she likes it so much. 

Duck, Duck T-Shirt / Posted 7-30-2010

Equipment:  2 large t-shirts
Have all the players sit in a circle.  Select one player to be "It."  The player selected "It" is given 2 large T-shirts to carry.  "It" walks around the circle and drops one T-shirt behind someone.  Both players quickly run opposite directions around the circle until they meet again.  When they meet, they shake hands, put on the T-shirt, do three Jumping Jacks (or whatever) and run for the opening in the circle.  The player getting back to the space last will be the new "It." 
Variation:  Have the "It" drop a string loop behind a player.  When they meet, they have to successfully do a string figure (cup and saucer, Jacob's ladder, etc.) and then go to the open space.

Even Dice Posted 1-28-2010

For this game you will need to provide the group with 10 dice.  Each player will roll the dice and then check to see if they have rolled any even numbers.  If so, they remove the even number dice and continue to roll again.  How many rolls can they roll before they are out of dice?  Your 1st roll might be - 1, 4, 5, 2, 6, 5, 3, 1, 6 and a 4.  Remember, remove the even numbers and go for the 2nd roll.  Again, how many rolls can you make before you’re out?  Variation – have one team roll odds and one team roll evens – play 3 rounds – total up the scores for both teams!

Face-to-Face Bean Challenge / Spiller Original / Posted 1-5-2010

Have two teams face each other.  Each player should be directly across from another player.  The teacher will show the players that he/she has 10 beans in his/her hand.  The teacher will turn around and place X number of beans in a single hand.  The teacher then turns around and asks if the 2 players are ready.  Both players should be concentrating on the teachers closed fist.  When the fist is opened, the players try to yell out the number of beans it will take to make 10.  If the hand had 6 beans in it, a player tries to be the 1st to yell out 4!  If the hand had only 2 beans in it, a player would want to yell out 8!  The first to give the correct number gets the point.  The teacher then goes to the next two players and repeats the process.  A point is once again awarded and the teams keep score.  First team to 10 wins the game.

Forgetful Story Teller / Pre School Activity / Spiller Original

As the story teller begins his/her story, they have a hard time remembering the story.  When the story teller forgets something, the kids fill-in the gaps.  The story teller might say, “One day there was a _____.”  When the story teller can’t remember he/she will say, “That day there was a what children?”  The kids might say, “a bird.”  Then, the story teller starts again with this information.  “One day there was a bird and this bird was _______.”  “Help me kids!”  “BLUE!”  This continues until the entire story is told.  It becomes the kid’s story.  They love to help the “Forgetful Story Teller.

Guess Correctly / Spiller Original

Begin by having 3 persons huddle and pass a coin/object between themselves. While huddled, one person retains the coin and then the 3 move to separate areas of the room. On the leaders “Go” command all other players then line up behind the person who they think has the coin/object. Award points of those who guessed correctly and play again using 3 new people.

Hula Hoop Tag / Posted 4-1-10
You will need a Hula Hoop for every other player; Arm Band for the tagger to wear.  Have every other person be it (tagger) or the "tag-ee." If there is, an uneven number of children allow for two tag gees and one tagger. Have the taggers chase the tag gees into the hula-hoop. The tag gees can be in a free space by putting their whole bodies in the hula-hoop. Taggers can move the hula-hoops but Tag gees cannot take the hula-hoop with them.  Players change roles when one is tagged. Make sure the tagger wears the armband to show that he or she is the tagger. Taggers can change whom they want to tag. The tagger becomes the tag gee and so on. Make sure you have an open space and remind students to watch out for each other so that they are not hit.  Persons in wheel chairs can use a piece of carpet to go on instead of a hula-hoop.  Other adaptations. One person can be it and the other children are tagged by the tagger. When the one person is tagged, she/he becomes it or the tagger.

Kidz Rock / Spiller Original

Put the group in front of you. Take a small stone and put it in your hand. Put your hands behind your back and place the stone in either the right or left hand. Bring the hands out front and the kids guess which hand has the stone. The will move the side that they think has the stone. Open your hands. If they were correct, they stay in the game to guess again. If out, they sit down. Play until one player wins.  The player that wins hides the stone the next round.

Make 11 / Posted 4-1-10
I use this game when I need time filler.Make 11 - (3 to 50+ players in groups of three, low activity).  Groups form in a circle. Groups face each other and at the count of three, put out one hand with a number of fingers extended, trying to reach a total of 11. The purpose of this game is to get students to work together to figure out how to "make 11." The students work at this until they understand the game, then they repeat the game using both hands, trying to total 21 or any other number determined by the teacher.  This game teaches coordination, verbal communication, visual acuity, muscle reaction, and helps students develop their fine motor skills. It also teaches the concepts of trust, team building, problem solving, and self-control.

Oh, Deer / Posted 4-1-10
Divide group in two, a group of resources, and a group of deer. Both line up facing each other, and then turn away from each other. Resources line chooses to be either shelter (hands over head forming a roof,) water (hands on mouth or do the sign for drink or water), food (hands on stomach). Deer chooses what they need in the same manner. At a given signal, both groups turn to face each other, then deer run over to the resource that matches the one they have chosen. If a deer does not find what needs are, it becomes a resource.  To add excitement, add a third element, mountain lions, who try to eat the deer on their way to get resources; lions could face away from middle to begin also.  Oh, Deer develops physical agility as well as mental alertness. It teaches about survival while also developing such skills as tactile contact, adaptability, self-control, pantomime, visual ability, reaction, speed, and running.

Queen Bee / Pre School Activity / Spiller Original

Equipment Beanbags (or colored paper squares) for each child

While I was in England many years ago, I saw a game called the Kings Keys.  This game was played just like Queen Bee with one difference.  The King would carry a ring of keys with him as he gathered his subjects behind he.  When he dropped the keys, all ran for the bean bags.  This is how I altered the original game.  Choose three children to be "queen bees." All other children place a beanbag (a flower") on the floor and stand beside it. Have them scatter the beanbags evenly throughout the playing area. On signal from the teacher, the queen bees "fly" around the "garden," tapping "bees" on the shoulder. The tapped bees follow the queen bees. When the teacher says, "Fly home," all the bees and the three "queen bees" run to any available flower. The three remaining players become the new queen bees.

Suggestions and Variations:
1. Change to a new loco-motor skill after each call "Fly home, Skip home, Hop home, etc."
2. "Bee sting." Keep three queen bees and, when you call Fly home, queen bees try to "sting" (touch) as many bees before they reach a beanbag.

Rainbows / UK / Posted 12-1-09

An equal number of beanbags in four colors - enough for the whole class are needed. The beanbags are scattered around the room / gym. The children move around and between them as instructed - e.g. tiptoe around the beanbags, jog around, run around etc. When the teacher shouts ‘Rain’ each child takes a beanbag. They then have to get into a group of four where each child has a different colored beanbag and put the beanbags into an arc on the floor to represent a rainbow.

Rain Game / Posted 4-1-10

Start in a circle, passing sounds to create a rainstorm. Each player keeps making the sound until the next one comes around. Sounds include finger-tapping, chest thumping, foot stamping, thigh slapping, clapping, rump thumping, finger napping, tongue clucking, and rubbing and shushing.Make a comment to end the game, such as something about attracting sun or rain, whichever is needed.  The purpose of this game is to calm children down, help them develop fine motor skills, and teach them the ability to focus. The rain game also emphasizes such elements as working in groups, listening to directions, and depending on one another for the game to be successful. It is good to do when the children are restless and need to relax before ending a game session or before moving on to a higher level of activity.

Rattle Animals / Pre School / Acting Out Game / Energizer / Spiller Original

This is a cute little game I learned while working in a school in Woking, England.  The teacher has a noisemaker in her hand and will give the students various commands.  Rattles work best, in my opinion.  When the teacher shakes the rattle all the students should go to sleep on the floor.  While they are at rest, the teacher will tell the students what they will be when they awake.  For example, she might say, “Students, when you wake-up you will be busy little bees buzzing all over the room.”  When the teacher is ready she will shake the rattle and all will fall fast asleep on the floor.  She will give another example of what she wants them to be and says, “Wake -up!” and off they go again.  While I was in a school in Eek, Alaska, the students became herds of caribou, moose walking in deep snow, seals, bears and hunters stalking polar bears.  This is a great way to get your kids to act-out a variety of actions.  Remember to shake the rattle when you want them to sleep.  It always helps to show the kids what kind of action you’d like to see before they are asked to do it.  Another way to play is to let them act-out as they will.
  This is fun because you never know how they will interpret what you say.

Stack 5 or 10 Challenge / Posted 1-5-2010

Groups of 5 sit around a table or on the floor facing each other.  The leader will ask them a True / False Question.  The teams make a decision if they think the question is true or it is false.  If they think it is true, they will make a “T” sigh with both hands exactly like a coach would call time-out.  If they think it is false, no sigh is necessary.  The teacher will give the correct answer and if a team is correct, they will place one fist in the center of the table or floor.  Play continues and if the team answers correctly once again, they put another fist on top of the other one.  First team to Stack 5 fist wins.  Regroup your teams and play again.  Remember the questions should be age group appropriate. 

I See / Spiller Original

This is an interesting imitation activity for the entire group. The game begins with the leader saying “I See!” The entire group stops what they are doing and responds: “What do you see (and then the leaders name).” The leader tells the group what to do. The group then acts out that command until the leader once again says: “I See.” All participants stop and respond once again: “What do you see (and then the leaders name).” The game continues with the leader suggesting another idea.

Team High-Low Game / Team Guessing Game / Posted 1-5-2010

Have your group sit in a circle and number off 1, 2, 1, 2 etc. until all the players are a 1 or a 2.  The teacher will write a single number on a card from 1 to 100 or 1 to 1000.  The players in the circle have no clue what the number is.  The 1st player (number 1) will guess what the number is.  The teacher will say either, “High” or “Low.”  If the teacher says “High,” it means the guess was greater than the number on the card.  If “Low,” it means the guess was lower then the number on the card.  Play continues around the circle until a player makes a correct guess.  This player’s team will win a point.  First team to score 5 (or 10) points wins the game.