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Fun Tag Games

The list of fun tag games is endless and always a favorite of campers/students.  The key to tag games is to teach them in short bursts.  What I mean by that is, most tag games shouldn’t be played for more than 5 minutes.

 

 

Let’s say you have 25 kids in your group.  I would pick 6 taggers and play about 3 or 4 rounds of the same tag game in approximately 5 minutes before I move on to a new tag game.

 

 

TIP: Wrist bands are a great substitute for pinnies.  They’re easy to put on and take off, especially when you’re dealing with 2nd grade and lower.  In the past I would buy cheap wrist bands from party city, but I ended up spending more money, because I had to purchase twice a school year.  You’re better off spending a little more.  I wouldn’t recommend the real expensive brands, because than it starts to get pricey.

 

 

 

Wrist band are also a way to make another team, especially if you need multiple teams.  When I run my Dodge Ball Tournaments, I have one team with green pinnies, red pinnies, wrist bands and one team with nothing.

 

 

TIP: Kids love to fall. It’s fun! Some kids will fall any chance they get, but it’s a great way to get hurt.  I have a rule with any tag game that I play that falling is the same as being tagged.

 

If a player falls in freeze tag, they must stand and freeze.  A player that falls in hyperspace, must go back and touch their back line. When a player falls in Capture The Flag, they must go to jail.

 

What if a player falls on their side of the playing area? Same as being tagged! Doesn’t matter!

 

 

Freeze Tag

 

Equipment: Wrist Bands or Pinnies

 

Ages: 4 yrs & up (pre-k & up)

 

Rule of Thumb: 5-6 taggers for every 20 players

 

  • If a player is tagged or falls they must stand up, with one hand in the air.  A player that was not tagged and give them a high five and they will be unfrozen and back in the game.

 

 

 

Straddle Tag

 

Equipment: Wrist bands or Pinnies

 

Ages: 4 yrs -9 yrs (pre-k-3rd/4th grade)

 

  • Same rules as freeze tag, except when tagged a player must freeze, stand and straddle their legs.

 

  • An unfrozen player may crawl under their legs to get them back in the game.

 

  • Players mus go thru the front, not the back when freeing another player.  THIS AVOIDS COLLISIONS.

 

  • Tags can’t be made when a player is setting another player free.

 

 

 

Blob Tag

 

 

No Equipment

 

Ages: 5 yrs & up (K & up)

 

  • Choose a tagger and make the class aware of which player is it.

 

  • If the tagger tags another player, they may join hands.

 

  • If the two taggers tag a 3rd player, than all 3 chain together and so on.

 

  • Tip: Let students know they’re allowed to chain elbows instead of hands.  Sometimes girls and boys don’t want to hold hands.

 

  • Tip: Make the class aware that the person who started the games, is the director/leader of the blob.  They will tell the blob which way to run and who to chase.  This avoid miscommunication.

 

  • I’m not a huge fan of this game, because it’s tough for kids to make tags while staying chained together, but it’s not bad for a 5 minute game.

 

 

TOILET BOWL TAG

 

Equipment: Wrist Bands or Pinnies

 

Ages: 4 yrs – 9 yrs ( pre-k – 3rd grade)

 

  • If a player is tagged by a tagger, they must get down on one knee with their other leg up.  Their hand is up in the air as if their doing the Egyptian pose.

 

  •  A player that is not it, may sit on the toilet (knee) and flush the handle (Egyptian hand).

 

  • You’ll get some giggles, but they love it!

 

 

 

BUMPER CAR TAG

 

Equipment: 1 hula hoop per camper/student

 

Ages: 4 yrs & up ( pre-k & up)

 

  • Each player stands in a hoop and holds the hoops waste level.

 

  • Choose a color hoop to be hit.  If you call red, than anyone with a red hoop becomes a tagger.

 

  • VERY IMPORTANT that players are taught how to tag properly to avoid injuries.

 

  • A tag is made by tapping your hoop on another players hoop.

 

  • When a tag is made, players must drop their hoops and walk into the other persons hoop. DO NOT hand the hoop to another player.

 

  • NO TAG BACKS!  (Tagging the player that just tagged you immediately)

 

 

3 ON A TREE

 

Equipment: 4 pool noodles and wrist bands or pinnies

 

Ages: 7 yrs & up (2nd grade & up)

 

CLICK HERE to check out a video of 3 on a tree.

 

  • If a player is tagged by a tagger, they’re frozen just like freeze tag.

 

  • 4 players start with a pool noodle (tree). They’re allowed to walk around but not run and they must hold the pool noodle in a horizontal direction.

 

  • Players on the tree can’t be tagged.

 

  • A player that is not tagged may join the player holding the noodle.

 

  • Once a 3rd player holds onto the the tree, the other two players must get off the tree and avoid getting tagged.

 

  • Players with the tree are allowed to walk up to frozen players to get them back into the game.

 

 

DINOSAUR OR JURASSIC PARK TAG

 

CLICK HERE to see a video of this game.

 

Equipment: Wrist bands or pinnies, 4 rubber chickens or bean bags

 

Ages: 7 yrs & up (2nd grade & up)

 

  • Players with the wrist bands are the dinosaurs (taggers).

 

  • The players holding the chickens are invincible ( can’t be eaten or tagged).

 

  • When a player is tagged for the first time, they’re not out, but they must grab their shoulder, because they bitten (tagged).

 

  • When a player is tagger a 2nd time, they must grab their should and leg.  Player must run with a limp.

 

  • When a player is tagged a 3rd time they’re dead. They must fall down and wait for an invincible to give them a rubber chicken to bring them back to life.

 

  • A tagger is not allowed to tag the same person 3x in a row.  They are allowed to make a tag and look for someone else.  If they come across the same person later, they may tag them again.  I usually demonstrate getting tagged 3x in a row as I fall and it get’s giggles while helping them remember.

 

  • Note: Taggers will get tired before everyone else, so choose more taggers than a normal freeze tag game.

 

  • Tip: There is a danger of kids getting stepped on.  I always make a joke to not step on the dead people.  It usually gets some giggles and makes them aware at the same time.

 

 

BLIND TAG

 

Equipment: Blind folds or bandanas

 

Ages: 8 yrs & up (3rd grade & up)

 

  • Everyone is it in this game.

 

  • Place kids in groups of 2 or 3 if needed.

 

  • One player puts on the blindfold while the other stands behind them with their hand on the shoulders to guide them.

 

  • Tell players to use voice command instead of physically moving them all the time.

 

  • Tagged players must chain on to the team that tagged them.

 

LINE TAG

 

Equipment: Wrist bands or Pinnies

 

Ages: 5 & up (K & up)

 

  • All players including taggers, must stay on a line from the gym floor.  Basketball, volleyball lines etc…

 

  • Players are allowed to switch lines, but no jumping.

 

  • If a player is tagged, goes off the line or falls they must perform the assigned exercise.

 

  • Wall seat, jumping jacks, push-ups etc….

 

  • Designate an area for the exercise to be performed and then the player may rejoin the game. I usually tell my campers/students to go to the nearest wall.

 

  • Tip: Players should not perform their exercise where there are floor lines to avoid injuries.

 

  • Variation: When a player is tagged, they will quickly go off the court, put a wrist bands and become a tagger.

 

  • This will continue until all players are tagged.

 

  • Don’t use pinnies with this game, because it will take too much time for kids to get back in the game.

 

  • Option: When players become a tagger, they can run with a hand on their head or behind their back to indicate they’re a tagger.

 

  • I favor the wrist bands, because kids tend to try and disguise themselves when we don’t use them.

 

 

Hyperspace

 

CLICK HERE to check out a video of this game.

 

Equipment: Wrist bands or Pinnies

 

Ages: 7 yrs & up (2nd grade & up)

 

  • Divide the teams up with the half court line or a row of cones if the game is being played outside.

 

  • Players are taggers when they’re on their side of the gym.

 

  • Once a player crosses over the half court line they can be tagged by the other team.

 

  • If a player is tagged or falls they must go back and touch their back line, usually the base line of a basketball court before crossing over again.

 

  • First team to get all of their players behind the others teams back line without getting tagged wins.

 

  • Tip: Players that have been tagged and are on their way to touch their back line, may make tags before they reach their back line.  This rule is crucial when a few players are left in the game.

 

  • Option: Allow players that already made it safe behind the back line to rejoin the game.  This can help a slower player that may be stuck on the other side.  I’m not a huge fan of this variation, because it extends the game for too much time.

 

  • Tip: If the game is taking too long, you can do a count down from 10…9….8….7 etc….

 

Hyperspace Variation

 

Equipment: Wrist bands or Pinnies and Two gymnastic mats

 

Ages: 7 & up (Grades 2nd & up)

 

  • Instead of trying to get across the other teams back line, you’re now trying to arrive on their gymnastics mat placed near the back of their side of the court.

 

  • If  a player is tagged on their opponents side of the gym, they must sit where they were tagged instead of going back and touching their back line.

 

  • If a teammate tags them, they must take a free walk back to their side before playing again.  This includes the teammate that set them free.

 

  • A player that is safely on the mat, is allowed to come off to free a teammate, but they must take a free walk back to their side again.

 

 

CIRCLE TAG

 

Equipment: No Equipment needed

 

Ages: 6 yrs & up (1st grade & up)

 

  • Groups of 4-6

 

  • Each player gets a number.

 

  • Player #1 is the first tagger. The other players hold hands in a circle.

 

  • Player #1 starts on the opposite side of the circle from player #2.

 

  • Player #1 must attempt to tag the back or shoulders of player #2 without reaching across the circle.

 

  • If a tag is made or the circle breaks apart, player #2 is now it and they must tag player #3 and so on and so forth.

 

  • Tip: If a tag is not made after 30 seconds, rotate to new tagger anyway.  They will get tired fast.

 

LION’S LAIR

 

Equipment: Wrist bands or Pinnies

 

Grades: K-5th

 

  • One player is placed in the center of gym with wrist bands to mark them as the tagger.

 

  • Designate lines near the center of the gym approximately 20 feet apart.  This is the area that the players can be tagged by the lion.

 

  • When a player comes within the Lion’s Lair, they must commit to crossing to the other side.

 

  • If a player is tagged in the Lair, falls or decommits, they become a Lion/tagger in the Lair.

 

  • Last person not tagged wins the game and becomes the Lion for the next round.

 

Shoot for the Stars

 

 

Equipment: 20+ poly spots, wrist bands or pinnies and 4 mats

 

  • In this tag can you use 2-5 taggers depending how big your class is. TIP: A good rule of thumb is 5 taggers for every 20 players.

 

  • Spread different colored poly spots all over the gym.

 

  • You’ll need 4 mats.  Place 1 in each corner of the gym.  If you have different colored mats, that’s perfect.  If not, place a different colored poly spot on each mat.

 

  • Make 4 teams with different colored pinnies or wrist bands.  Taggers will be identified with no pinnie or wrist band.

 

  • When you yell a color, the players can run to a poly dot to be safe.  Only the players on the correct poly dot are safe.

 

  • If you yell go to your corner, they must run the mat of the color, without being tagged.

 

  • You have another option to yell a specific colored corner and all players must run to that corner, no matter the color without being tagged.

 

  • When a player gets out they have to perform an exercise before they can get back into the game or they’re simply out until they next round when you pick new taggers.

 

  • Variation: This can be done without 4 teams and you simply have taggers and non taggers.

 

  • Variation: This the favorite variation of my students/campers.  If a player gets out, they become a tagger.  Little by little you have more taggers than non. The kids have a blast with this game.

 

BOO BOO TAG

Equipment: Wrist band or pinnies

 

Grades: K-6th

 

  • 5 taggers for every 20 players.

 

  • When a player is tagged, they must place their hand where they were tagged and attempt to keep running.

 

  • For example:  If a tagger tagged them on their calf, they must run with a hand on their calf.  If they were tagged on their back, they must run with a hand on their back.

 

  • Each time they’re tagged, it will change the position of their hand.

 

  • VARIATION: A player that is tagged 3x, must perform an exercise or become a tagger.

 

Give It Away Tag

 

 

Equipment: Mini Pool noodles

 

Grades K-6th

 

  • Players with the pool noodles are the taggers.

 

  • Taggers use the pool noodles to make tags.

 

  • When a tag is made, the tagger gives the pool noodle to the person they tagged and they become the tagger.

 

  • OPTION: Whichever players are stuck with the pool noodles at the end of a game, must perform an exercise. 10 push-ups, wall seats, jumping jacks, etc…

 

Partner Tag

 

  • One player at a time is the tagger.  They’re only attempting to tag their partner.

 

  • If a tag is made, the player that is tagged will perform 5 jumping jacks before they can tag their partner.

 

  • OPTION: Play another round and have players that won, match up and players that lost match up.  This will help lesser skilled students have more success.

 

Pacman Tag

 

Equipment: Cones, Poly spots, Pinnes and bean bags.

 

Grades: 1st-5th

 

 

CLICK HERE for a video of this game.

 

  • Set up the gym like a pacman maze with the use of small cones.

 

  • Place a jail in any location of the maze that you choose.

 

  • 1 green bean bag in each corner of the gym and 1 purple bean bag in the center of the maze.

 

  • If a player has a green bean bag, they have 10 seconds that they can’t be tagged.  Once the 10 seconds are finished, they must drop the bean bag for another player to use.

 

  • If a player finds the purple bean bag, they not only have 10 seconds that they can’t be tagged, but they don’t have to follow the pattern of the maze.  They’re allowed to step of the cones.  OPTION: Player with the purple bean bag can be tagged, but they still have the freedom to not follow the maze.

 

  • If a player is tagged, they most go to jail and wait for a teammate to save them with a high five.

 

  • TIP: 4-5 taggers for every 20 players.

 

  • OPTION: If you don’t want to use a jail, just have the the tagged players freeze and wait for a teammate to give them a high five.

 

  • OPTION: If a player is tagged, they must leave the maze and perform an exercise, or use the rock wall, play a game of 2, 4 or 6  squares.  Another words, set up stations for players that are out, until the next round begins.

 

  • TIP: Place Poly Spots wherever you have confusing turns in your maze.  Indicate this to your students, so they’re aware when they see poly spots, they may go in that direction.

 

  • TIP: Make the course very simple for 1st & 2nd.  3rd-5th can handle something a little more complicated.

 

  • TIP: If you choose to use a jail, don’t allow the taggers to guard.

 

  • NOTE: In the video above, I didn’t use dead ends, but I think it’s a wise decision for 3rd-5th.  Place your green bean bags in each dead end corner.

 

Balance Tag

 

 

Equipment: Bean bags & Pinnies or wrist bands

 

Grades: 1st-5th

 

  • This game is played just like freeze tag.

 

  • Taggers and fleeing players place a bean bag on their head.

 

  • If bean bag falls off the tagger as they’re making a tag, it will not count.

 

  • If a player’s bean bag falls off as they’re fleeing, they’ll be frozen.

 

  • A player is not frozen if their bean bag falls of when they’re not fleeing.

 

I hope you enjoyed this information.  Please feel free to leave a comment or question below.

 

 

 

 

 

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