Summer is a distant memory and the excitement of Christmas is starting to creep in. The only downside is the weather, this means plenty of indoor break times coming up in the next few months. Arm yourself with plenty of ideas to keep you going till spring.
Even with all the advancements in technology, sometimes going old-school works best. Having some board games stored in the cupboard for rainy days is a great way to get children playing together and developing critical thinking.
Arts and Crafts
Children have a great imagination and creativity. Why not bring out all your arts and crafts and see what the children create. You can also guide your students towards a project such as creating a comic book, flip book, origami or even holiday themed ideas for Christmas.
Freeze Dance Party
Children love to dance! So why not get them active with a freeze dance party. This is good either at the beginning or end of break time and only for short periods of time, otherwise the children start to get a little crazy. Stick on your favourite CD or stream music. Also, you can get the children involved in choosing the music.
If you need a calmer break time, why not pop on a classic DVD. Try to use this occasionally so that it becomes a treat for the children. Another way of doing this is using YouTube, most films are on there in small segments to suit however long your break-time is.
Memory games are a great way to keep little minds sharp after dinner time. You can use classics such as ‘I pack my suitcase’ and ‘I went to the shop’ which requires the next child to remember what the child before added and to add their own. This is great as it involves all the class and engages them in a fun and intellectual way.
Like with the board games, sometimes the things that kept us entertained when we were younger work just as well if not better than giving the children iPad’s to play with. Traditional games such as cat’s cradle and hand jives are great at helping children develop their fine motor skills and concentration. Many children probably won’t know about these, so you may have to teach them first.
Why not turn break-time into a learning experience. There are a variety of science games and projects to engage the students, this can also apply to engineering and maths. Why not make a catapult with lolly sticks and elastic bands or teach the class how static electricity works with a balloon and watch one of the children’s hair rise.
Technology is a part of every day life now, why not engage the children in some creative ways using technology. This can either be by creating a piece of art on a tablet or making a movie or stop motion movie. The potential is endless.
This is a party staple that every child will know how to play. Rather than disrupt your seating plan, create a version of this game where you don’t use chairs. It sounds mad, but it can work just as well without chairs. Simply give each child a carpet square or use a piece of construction paper to mark out the seating area and just play the game as normal.
Four Corners Game
This is a fun an easy game and doesn’t require any equipment. For those of you who do not know the rules here they are:
- Assign where the corners are and number them from 1-4.
- Have player 1 stand in the middle. To choose player one, either ask for a volunteer or pick a child at random.
- Player 1 must close their eyes and count to 10.
- Whilst player 1 is counting to 10 all the other players must pick a corner to stand in.
- Once player 1 has counted to 10, they must choose a number between 1 and 4 without opening their eyes.
- All the players in that corner have lost. You can either have player 1 to keep their eyes closed or quickly open them to see who they have gotten out.
- Continue to play until there is only 1 player left.
- To continue the game, the player that won can now become player 1.