Getting kids outside has benefits, but sometimes the weather doesn’t cooperate or your space isn’t ideal for outdoor physical education. Having some indoor physical education games up your sleeve helps get kids moving even when you are inside!
Check out Phys Ed Focus: 15 Ways To Get Kids Moving as many of the ideas are perfect to get kids moving in the classroom or gym. Things like movement stations can be used to give students an opportunity to try different activities and spread them out a little. Ideas like Dance Break can be extended simply by playing music for longer. You can also ask kids to incorporate particular movements into their dance or ask them to mimic you to bring in additional movements.
And if you need games to meet phys ed standards that you can play indoors, perhaps in limited space like your classroom, try these three physical education games. They require minimal materials and set up.
Physical education games 1 — Do as I do
Spread students out, making sure students have space to move their arms and legs without hitting walls, furniture or other students. Instruct students to mimic what you do. This game is similar to Simon Says, but there are no verbal commands, nor is there a “trick” that gets students out.
In this version of the game, do a movement that students can copy: a jumping jack, toe touches, arm circles, bunny hops in space, lunges. Start moving quicker. Anybody who does the wrong action is “out” and can jog in place until the next round.
Physical education games 2 — Hide in plain sight
To play Hide in Plain Sight, you’ll need one small object that cannot be found elsewhere in the room.
Have all players but one (the hider) sit in their seats and put their heads down and eyes closed. The hider hides the object somewhere in the room where it can be seen without anything being moved.
Once the object is hidden the hider continues walking around (not drawing attention to the location of the object). The rest of the students now also walk around the room looking for the object. When they locate the object they continue walking around the room and then return to their seat without giving away the hiding place. Once in their seat, the person says “I spy”. When all students have returned to their seats, the hider reveals where the object was and the first person that said, “I spy” hides the object for the next round.
Physical education games 3 — Magic carpet
To set up this game, mark four magic carpets equal distance apart and create a pathway in the classroom around which the players may walk, tiptoe or skip, that bring students from one magic carpet to the next.
To play, the teacher claps their hands. The students walk around the pathway in time with the clapping. When the teacher calls “freeze” and stops clapping all players freeze in place. Anyone standing on a magic carpet is “out” and takes a seat in the center. Continue this way until there are only a few students remaining. Students in the center can march in place or do some other activity in time with the clapping.
You can vary the speed of the clapping to change the pace of the movement. You can give students different instructions about how to move—walking, tiptoeing, high stepping, skipping, etc.
You’ll find additional support for these games along with other indoor physical education games, plus phys ed plans for fundamental skills, early morning fitness, modified sports, athletics, dance, and gymnastics in Physical Education Lesson Plans.
This bundle includes 35 plans with physical education games and activities for indoors and out. Each lesson plan makes it easy to get your class moving with warm up ideas, skills practices, suitable year or levels, equipment needed, physical education games, and diagrams. And each lesson is available on a separate card so you can take it with you no matter where you’re located!
Get physical education games in done-for-you lesson plans here >> Physical Education Lesson Plans