One-two-three

What it is: An outdoor group game, not terribly active, but it does involve kicking/catching/pegging (traditionally with a hacky sack).

Best for: Group of about 6 to 8.

What you need: A ball to play with, usually a hacky sack. You could also try with a bigger ball, like a soccer ball. Or for a really easy game with smaller kids, use one of those kickball-sized lightweight rubber balls filled with air, like the ones you see at Walmart in those big nets, you know?

How to play: First everyone stands in a circle. One player, like Cole, starts by holding the hacky sack and then volleys it to another player, like Sarah. Then Sarah passes it to someone else in the circle, using her feet, knees, or head, but no hands. (Or, go ahead and allow hands if you want. No one’s going to stop you.) As Sarah passes the hacky, everyone counts “one” out loud. Then as the hacky is passed again, everyone counts “two” out loud. After the hacky is passed a third time and everyone counts “three” out loud, anyone is allowed to catch the hacky with their hands. Say Cole happened to catch it again.

Now Cole gets a chance to try to peg another player and eliminate them. He can’t move his feet at all, but everyone else is allowed to take exactly five steps away from him. After they do, he looks around and carefully chooses someone to peg, like Sarah. If he’s successful in pegging her (from the neck down), Sarah is out. If Sarah catches the hackey in her hands, Cole is out. If Cole misses, nothing happens. Then start the three volleys again. Continue playing until one player remains, the winner.

Variations: I think this game is also called wacky sack (haha). And you could easily adapt or modify the rules for the size of the group or the skill of your players. You could have more than three volleys, for example, before someone is allowed to catch the hacky. You could have players take three steps away from the pegger instead of five. You could make a rule that if someone tries to peg someone but misses entirely, they’re eliminated. Or if a player is pegged, instead of being eliminated right away, you could give them a letter and then once a predetermined word is spelled, like spaz, for example, they’d be out of the game. Anyway, just experiment with the rules if you want to and find something that works for you.

Also, the game spud is a little similar and a little more active (and, personally, I think that one’s a little more fun).

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