Keep everyone cool during the hot summer months with water games. Plenty of water games don’t require the use of a swimming pool, so even if you have limited space and no access to a pool, you can still come up with ways for kids to beat the heat. Most water games work best with a group of children. If you are supervising more than five children, make sure you have an extra set of hands to help chaperone.
Water Balloon Games
Water balloons remain fun for children of all ages. Some children enjoy simply tossing the balloons at each other and watching them burst. Keep in mind, though, that a balloon exploding against bare skin can sting, bruise and may not be the best idea for a group. Instead, combine water balloons with traditional games, such as wiffle ball or catch. Children can pitch and swing at the water balloon and feel a cool spray of water when the balloon bursts. Divide the group into pairs; have each pair toss and catch a balloon. The pair that goes the longest without the balloon breaking wins.
You can also try a water balloon relay. Divide the group into two teams and give each team a balloon. Have children run from point A to point B, passing the balloon off. If a team is able to complete the relay without the balloon breaking, they win. Part of the fun of the relay will be the balloon breaking, so keep extra filled balloons on hand. Another wet relay is the wet clothing relay. Soak a T-shirt and a pair of pants in a bucket of water. Have child pull on the pants and shirts and run to point B, where they will pull the clothes off and pass them to the next runner.
Keep active children cool by incorporating splashes of water into a game of tag. Give the person who is “It” a squirt gun. Tell her that she can’t squirt people in the face and that she only needs to squirt and hit a person once with water for him to be the new “It.” You can also replace the squirt gun with a sopping wet sponge if you do not like the idea of using water guns.
Sprinkler and Hose Fun
Children enjoy running around and jumping over a sprinkler in the summertime. They’ll also enjoy playing tug of war over a sprinkler. Divide the group in half and tell them to hold on to opposite sides of the rope. On your whistle, tell them to tug. The object of the game is to pull the opposite team through the water. Children may also enjoy double dutch or jumping rope over a sprinkler. If all you have is a hose, use a nozzle to make a straight line of water come out of it. Have children limbo under the stream of water.
Children can spend a summer afternoon playing pool tag, such as Marco Polo. Make sure children can swim if they want to play this game. You may want to hire a life guard to help supervise a large group. You can also set up a volleyball net across the pool and have children play pool badminton or volleyball.
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