Fun PE Games for Kids: PE Activities Gym Exercise

 PE Games for Elementary Homeschoolers

Getting PE time in as a homeschooler is difficult. Sometimes, you have to get creative. Kids love to play tag! These physical education games for elementary focus on old favorites, but each one has a new twist. Learn the country of origin of many pe activities for kids. Kids will love to play these fun PE games indoors or outdoors. Enjoy!

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Fun PE Games for Kids: PE Activities Gym Exercise
Fun PE Games for Kids: PE Activities Gym Exercise.

Tag Games for Physical Education 

Oonch Neech is a tag game that originated in Pakistan. This game incorporates safe areas.

Oonch = up and Neech =  down. 'It' chooses either oonch or neech. When oonch is chosen, the players use a high place or object as a safety zone. A tree works well, or if playing in the house, a couch makes a great safety zone. When neech is chosen, the players use a place that is lower than playing area. For example, a sidewalk, a rug, or a baseball base. Safe bases are decided prior to the start of the game.

Players can only stay on the safe base for one minute at a time- so once they land on the safe spot they must count slowly to 60.

When a player is tagged, they become 'it' and get to choose whether to play oonch or neech. For added fun, 'it' can call out oonch or neech during the game to change it up.

Traditional Tag with a Twist

You know how the game of Tag goes, one person is 'it' and chases the other players to tag them. When the player that is "it" tags someone, that person then becomes 'it.'

Freeze Tag:  One person is 'it' and chases the other players trying to touch, or tag them. When the player that is 'it' tags another player, that person must freeze frozen.The frozen player can only unfreeze when touched by another player. How many players can you freeze?

Flashlight Tag: Played in the dark or at dusk. When the flashlight beam shines on a player, they are out. No cheating! Combine it with Freeze Tag for even more fun.Reverse Tag: 'It' is chased by the other players. The first person to tag 'it' becomes the new 'it.'

Tiggy Off Ground is a game that originated in England.

'It' must "tig" or tag the other players. To be safe from getting "tigged," players need to move their body up off the ground when they are being chased. Players can only stay "off ground" for one minute at a time. When one minute has passed, players get down and run to another place where they can move up and "off ground."

When a player is "tigged," they are out of the game. Game ends when all of the players are out. The first player who was "tigged" becomes "it" for the next game.

Pilolo is a game that originated in Ghana.

This game is a variation is a scavenger hunt with a race. Pilolo = time to search for. One player is the hider. The other players hide their eyes while the hider places all of the objects into hiding places. Players must know the boundaries of the playing area prior to hiding the objects, as well as, the number of objects that are hidden. For a fun variation for Easter, use plastic Easter eggs.

Players stand at the start line. When the hider yells the word Pilolo, players run to find the hidden items. Each time that a player finds a hidden item, they must return to the start line and place them item on the line.

Players cannot find more than one item at a time, meaning they MUST place the item on the start line before searching for another item.

The player who returns with the most items wins.


Did you know Hopscotch originated in France? This game is played outdoors on a flat, paved surface, but you could paint an old sheet or use cardboard squares to play indoors. You can also purchase a hopscotch board for indoor or outdoor play. Each player needs a small item to toss onto the hopscotch squares. Rocks or quarters work well.

Hopscotch board for indoors from Alex Toys.

How to Play Hopscotch:

Where there are two squares beside each other or one big square (1–2, 4–5, 7, 9–10), put one foot in each square so that you are standing on both of your feet. Where there is only one square (3, 6, and 8), hop into the square and balance on only one foot. To begin, toss your rock or coin onto square number 1 and hop over it. Hop onto square 2 on one foot, and then continue the rest of the hopscotch as described. When you get to squares 9 and 10, turn around and repeat. However, when you get to square 2, reach down and pick up the rock while balancing on one foot. With rock in hand, hop onto square 1 and then out of the hopscotch.

Turn continues with tossing the rock onto square 2. Follow the same procedure that you did when your stone was on square 1. Continue until you have completed the entire hopscotch with your stone in all 10 squares. Remember to always hop over the square where your stone is.

If you do any one of the actions below, you are out and have to start over:

  • Put both of your feet down in a square where you should only put one foot.
  • Step on any of the lines of the diagram.
  • Hop onto the square where your rock landed.
  • Don't throw your rock onto the correct square.
  • Lose your balance

What Time, Mr. Wolf is a game that originated in Australia

Play is similar to Red Light, Green Light. Instead of one person calling out "red light" or "green light," the wolf responds to the question "What's the time, Mr. Wolf?" by calling out different times of the day.

One player is chosen as the "wolf." Player stands with back toward the others, who are standing approximately 20 feet behind at the start line.  

Players call out in unison, "What's the Time, Mr. Wolf?" Wolf turns around and faces the players answering with a time, for example, eight o'clock. Depending on the time the wolf chose, that is the number of steps that the players take toward the wolf. Eight o'clock = eight steps forward.

Then, the wolf turns back around waiting for the players to ask again.

Play continues until the wolf thinks the players are close enough to catch. When they are close, the wolf responds to their question "What's the Time, Mr. Wolf?" with the answer "Dinnertime!" and chases the players quickly to tag one of them before they make it back to the start line. 

When a player is tagged before crossing the starting line, that player becomes the wolf. If all of the players make it back across the start line without being tagged, the wolf continues to try to catch one.

Stuck in the Mud originated in Australia.

Game is a variation freeze tag. 'It' chases the other players. When a player is tagged, that player becomes "stuck in the mud" and unable to move. To free the stuck player from the mud, another player has to crawl through the stuck player's legs. When this happens, the stuck player can return to the game and continue play.

The game is finished when all of the players are "stuck in the mud."  The player that has been stuck the longest becomes 'it' for the next round of the game.

Give Yourself a Hand

Locate an open area to spread out grocery bags, approximately 30 feet.
Turn the grocery bags into the stepping stones: Draw either two feet or one foot on the flat side of each grocery bag. Put folded-up newspapers into each bag and staple closed.

Lay bags in random order. Players will jump from bag to bag, so begin with the bags close together.

Tip: Make sure to lay the bags on a surface where they will not slide around when stepped on.

Player look at the feet on the stepping stone bags. A stepping stone with one foot drawn on it means that players jump to that stone and balance on one foot before jumping bag. This is similar to Hopscotch. If a player loses balance or gets stuck, they must start over.

Rearrange the bags in different order to change the game. You can also increase the space between the stepping stones to make it more difficult.


Lora is a homeschooling mom, writer, creator of Kids Creative Chaos, and Director of the Play Connection.