Jump for joy! That's because it's Leap Year and we have an extra day to have fun with our kiddos! What better way to celebrate than by playing jumping games? I know my kids are already bouncing off the walls, so let's channel that energy!
I purchased a set of large colored foam dice at my local bargain store for this game, but you could also use regular dice.
What you need:
- Dice of two colors
- Pen or pencil
1. On your paper, write the numbers 1-6 and next to each number write a different instruction for a type of jumping activity. Kids can help you come up with some imaginative options!
For example, our paper included:
1: Hop like a frog
2: Jump like a kangaroo
3: Hop on your right foot
4: Hop on your left foot
5: Hop like a bunny
6: Jump up high
2. Each person takes a turn rolling the dice.
3. One color die tells you which jump to do and the other tells you when to stop. In our game, blue told us what action to do, and green told us how many. In the example below, you'll see a blue 4 and a green 2. That means I need to hop on my left foot two times.
4. Each person takes a turn rolling and you continue for as many rounds as you choose!
Lily Pad Hop
Cut lily pads out of construction paper or cardboard and have the kids decorate them by drawing flowers or frogs, or whatever their imagination comes up with! Arrange the lily pads in various patterns around the room or even the yard outside. Take turns jumping from one lily pad to the next. Try having each child create a pattern with the lily pads to see if other family members can follow it.
This is a classic game from when we were kids (and probably from when our parents were kids, and our grandparents too!) If you live in a warm climate, grab your sidewalk chalk and head on outside.
Live in a colder climate like me and have snow-covered ground? No problem! Try indoor hopscotch! Use painter's tape to create a hopscotch board on a hard surface floor. (I would recommend testing a small piece of tape in an inconspicuous area to make sure it won't leave residue on your floor.) Have hula-hoops? Create a hopscotch course with those instead. Try variations on how you jump through the course such as jumping with two feet, jumping with just your right foot or just your left foot, or alternating between right and left foot, etc.
Another classic game from childhood! Create fun contests to see who can do the most jumps in a row or who can make up the most creative jumping rhyme to recite while you jump.
I hope these simple game ideas help you leap into a fun Feb. 29!
Sarah Boucher is the publisher of Macaroni Kid Grand Haven-Spring Lake-Muskegon, Mich.