Hide and seek gets hurried up in this fun backyard game.
What You Need
A location with plenty of good hiding places
3 or more players
Choose a seeker and have her stand in a central location. The other players all touch the seeker's shoulder. When the seeker closes her eyes and begins to count down from 15, the other players have to run to find a hiding place.
When the seeker reaches zero, she turns in any direction and, with eyes still closed, takes three steps. She then opens her eyes and tries to spot the hidden players. All identified players must sit out the remaining rounds.
The game continues (with remaining players coming in to touch the seeker before heading out), but this time the seeker counts down from 14 before trying to spot hiding players. If players still remain hidden and unidentified, she counts down from 13, and so on.
If 15 seconds is not enough time for players to reach any hiding places, the seeker can start at 30 and count down in the same manner. The last player to be spotted wins and becomes the new seeker.
This build-em-up, knock-em-down game will get kids moving fast as they throw soft balls to knock down their opponents' towers. A rummage through your recycling bins should turn up plenty of stackables for the towers.
Number of players: 2 or more
What You Need
Light, stackable items
5 soft objects per player for cannonballs (rolled-up socks work well)
Rope or chalk
To set up: Gather a large number of light, stackable items to use as blocks, and five soft objects per player for cannonballs. Each player creates a large circle, about 6 feet in diameter, with rope on grass or chalk on blacktop (make the circles close together for younger kids and farther apart for older kids). Divide the tower blocks equally. Players build their towers in the center of their circles.
To play: At "Go," players have two minutes to knock down other towers with their cannonballs, while remaining within their own circle. They can defend their towers by blocking the cannonballs thrown at them; if one lands in their circle, they may use it. If a player runs out of balls, he may leave his circle to collect others. If a tower falls, the player may rebuild it — just keep an eye on incoming balls! When time is up, the player with the tallest tower standing wins.