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Traditional British Games

Games are crucial at school, as neuroscience findings assert. Throughout games, there are countless skills that pupils develop such as:

-increasing their coordination
-developing their creativity and flexibility of thought (conceive new ideas)
-enhancing memory
-improving coordination
-strengthening social skills
-promoting problem-solving skills
-expanding attention and concentration


From the English subject, we can work on traditional British games as a part of the English culture.

The point is how to explain the game to facilitate students' understanding. To do so, a good option is explaining the game at the classroom using the blackboard and illustrating at the same time that the activity is described. This visual support help pupils to imagine the layout at the playground.

After that, it's necessary to choose "it". For that, using English counting rhymes, as you can read in the following example:

Eenie, Meenie, miny, moo
catch a tiger by the toe
if he cries, let him go,
out goes YOU!


Other option for younger students:

A sailor went to sea sea sea
to see what she could see see see
But all that she could see see see
was the bottom of the deep blue sea sea sea.


Next step is moving to a place where pupils have the possibility to move freely, for instance, the playground.


And now it's time to warming out moving different parts of the body and stretching them, vocabulary as "blend your body and reach the tip of your toes" or "move your head side to side" is used at this step.

And now it's time to play! Depending on the age of students it's appropriate to do some variations to adapt them to their interest.


OPTIONS OF GAMES:

-What's the time, Mr. Wolf?

Have the pupils line up against the back wall. The pupil who is the wolf should stand with their back turned to the class. The pupils must ask the wolf: What's the time, Mr. Wolf? The wolf answer with a random time, e.g.: It's four o'clock.
The pupils take four steps toward the wolf. The pupils should move the corresponding number of the steps.
If the wolf says: dinner time! the pupils must run to safety on the back wall. The wolf chases the students and it tagged, this pupil will be the new Mr.Wolf!


-Three blind mice

One person plays the cat, the others stand in a circle around the cat, the cat puts their hands over their eyes and repeats three blind mice, see how they run as many times as they wish. When they stop and say see how they run NOW, the mice run away and the cat tries to catch them, the one to be caught then becomes the cat & the game goes on this way.

-Duck, duck, goose

Kids sit down in a circle facing each other. One child is "it" and walks around the circle. As they walk around, they tap children's heads and say whether they are a "duck" or a "goose". Once someone is the "goose" they get up and try to chase "it" around the circle. The goal is to tap that person before they are able to sit down in the "goose's" spot. If the goose is not able to do this, they become "it" for the next round and play continues. If they do tap the "it" child, the child tagged has to go round the circle tapping the children again, until they aren't caught.

-Rounders

This game is played between two teams of between six and fifteen players.

-Bowlers must bowl under the arm at a height between the knee and the head of the batter and without letting the ball bounce, go wide or go straight at the bowler.

-One rounder scored if:
a)the fourth post is reached before another ball is thrown or
b)if the fourth post is reached on a no ball

-One or two rounders is scored if:
a) the fourth post is reached without hitting the ball
b)the second post is reached after hitting the ball
c)there is obstruction by a fielder
d)there are two consecutive no balls

-The most common ways to be out is when you are caught by a fielder, you are stumped at a post before reaching it or if you run inside a post, although there are other ways

-When at a post you must remain in contact with that post

-When the bowler has the ball in his square you cannot run between posts

-You cannot have more than one batter at each post

-You must touch the fourth post on getting home


The rounders pitch is rectangular in shape with areas for throwing the ball to the batter and then posts which must be reached by the batter once they have hit the ball or a no ball is called. To score one rounder the batter must reach the fourth post before the next ball is bowled. One or two rounders can be scored for reaching the second post. Teams can consist of a maximum of fifteen players and a minimum of six.

-Ring a ring of roses

All the children stand in a circle and join hands, they then skip round in the circle singing: ring a ring of roses, a pocket full of posies, a tisshoo, a tishoo, we all fall down. The children then all sit down on the floor, singing: the cows are in the meadow, eating buttercups, a tishoo, a tishoo, we all stand up! The children all then stand up. Repeat as many times as required.


-Statue

Played with music, all the players move around while the music is going on, when the music stops the players have to stand like statues, anyone who moves is out. Start the music again and repeat as many times as you want. The last one is the winner.

-Musical chairs

Set up a line of chairs, one short from the number of players and start the music. Everyone walks around the chairs and sits down once the music stops. Whoever is left standing has to drop out. Take away one chair so you are one short and start the music again. This continues until only one person has a chair. They are the winner of this game!

-Three-legged to the beat

Divide children into pairs, matching children of similar height and build. Have each player stand next to their partner and put their arm around their partner's waist. The partners' inside legs (the right leg of the partner on the left and vice versa) should be touching. Tie the partners' inside legs together so each pair of children has three legs rather than four. Use two ropes to mark a starting line and a finish line. Have the players line up at the starting line. At your signal, have players walk or run as fast as they can to the finish line. It sounds easy, but it takes practice to make two legs work as one! The winners are the pair of children who cross the finish line first.



-Hide & Seek

The children choose someone to be "it". The child who is "it" counts one o'clock, two o'clock, three o'clock rock, four o'clock, five o'clock, six o'clock rock, seven o'clock, eight o'clock, nine o'clock rock, ten o'clock, eleven o'clock, twelve o'clock rock, midnight! He then tries to find the others who have hidden. When someone is tagged, they go to jail (an established place). The children who are not tagged, try to step on jail and this will cause a jailbreak. The others are free. When all the children have been sent to jail, the first one who is in is now the person who is it.

-Capture the flag

There were two teams. Team A has the front playground and Team B has the back playground, or a field is split between the two teams. The teams are given a time period, like 5 minutes, to hide their flag in their part of the field or playground. When the flag is hidden you call out that you are finished. Then you simply try to get the other team´s flag. If you get caught and tagged by the opponent on their territory you have to go to jail and can only be freed by a teammate who grabs you when your opponent isn't looking. The first team to capture the flag wins.

Playing cooperatively allows the child to overcome fears, manage conflicts... It is about playing, not to win others, but to overcome challenges or obstacles.

When the game is over, you can take the opportunity to play a Simon Says which is more relaxing or to practice with them some mindfulness technique, before coming back to the classroom.

When can you use these games? You have multiple options: as a reward, in English workshops, in a PE session or organizing an English Day at school.

If you need some extra information, please ask me in comments. Can you add more movement games as Who took the cookie from the cookie jar?

I hope you enjoy the games and have fun!

Mireia



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