Kids have a ton of energy. Gym is the one time during the school day that they can let loose and release some of their pent up pep. Group games for kids are designed to keep them entertained and in shape while playing in the gym. While you have your old stand-bys like dodge ball, capture the flag and tug of war, there are all sorts of fun and easy games that will keep the kids hopping.
This game breaks a group of kids into two teams and teaches them team-building skills. One group of kids lines up on one side of the gym, while the other kids line up on the other side of the gym. Place three mats on each side of the gym and make sure they are evenly spread out. Give each team three soft soccer balls before blowing your whistle. On your whistle, have the kids run at each other with the balls and try to hit each other with them. The kids can use their mats to block balls thrown at them, but they cannot cross the center line. If a kid gets hit, he must get off the court and perform five jumping jacks. He can only return to the game when a player on the other team is hit by a ball.
This pickle game requires three players, two bases and a ball. Place two rubber bases 15 feet apart from each other. Make sure that the bases are in the center of the gym, leaving a large amount of room for wild throws. Have one kid stand on one base while another kid stands on the other base. Have an additional kid stand in between the two bases and wait for your whistle. On your whistle, the kid in the center starts running toward one of the bases. As soon as she moves toward a base, have one player chase her with the ball and try and tag her out. If she starts getting too close to the other base, have the player with the ball throw it to the opposing player, who will try and tag the runner. If the runner gets to a base, she's safe -- but if she is tagged before reaching base, she is out.
Drag the Blanket
This gym game will help promote strength and cooperation in your kids. Break a group of kids into two teams, giving each team a blanket. Have them line up in the middle of the gym and pick one kid from each team to lie down on the blanket. On your whistle, both teams drag their blankets toward the end of the gym. The first team to get to the end of the gym with their player still on the blanket is the winner. According to the website Kid Activities, you can play this game with a larger group of kids by turning it into a relay race.
Jason Aberdeene has been a freelance writer since 2008. His articles have appeared in the "UCSD Guardian" and on various websites, specializing in teen health. An assistant at Kagan Physical Therapy since 2009, Aberdeene has a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from the University of California, San Diego.