Stories in motion

Active Stories are fun, entertaining and can be a unique way to get a large group moving.  If in a large space, allow for greater freedom of movement, however, if you are in a classroom or in a smaller space, movements on the spot always work!  Click the button below to find several Stories in Motion, courtesy of the Iowa Education Department:

Stories in Motion
Several stories that include actions for participants to engage in the story.
Stories in Motion.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document 197.7 KB

December Newsletter 2018

Winter Bowling

Equipment: 10 Water bottles (fill with snow), small ball

Directions: Bottles are arranged in the ten-pin formation on a hard surface. One player rolls at the pins, another replaces them as they are knocked over and calls the score. Change roles after each turn.


  • Vary number: Decrease or increase the number of pins 
  • Vary distance: Decrease or increase the distance of the pins from the player 
  • Make it math game! Label the pins with a number and have each player add up the numbers on the pins they knock over.

Toss the Bird

Equipment: Knotted towel or soft ball

Directions: This is a tag game with a twist. The “bird” can be a knotted towel or some other soft object suitable for throwing. You can have as many as you think are necessary. The point is that you can’t be tagged if you are holding a bird. People can toss the bird(s) to each other to help “protect” each other from being caught. Obviously, you will want to have fewer birds than you have people who are being chased. More than one person can be “it.” 

November Newsletter 2018

Keep Moving

Equipment: Plastic bags or scarves

How to Play: Have each student get a plastic grocery bag as they enter class. Then have them find a partner and a safe space in the playing area. They are to stand facing their partner approximately 5 feet form each other. On the teachers signal, both partners toss their bag into the air by throwing the bags into the air using both handles. Their job is to move in a predetermined way (i.e. jog on the spot, do a jumping jack etc.) by their teacher and catch each other’s bag before it hits the ground. If they are successful then they start again, but this time they must each take a step back from where they originally started.


  • Use scarves instead of plastic bags. Winter scarves from home work great for this game.

Stand Alone

Equipment: None

How to Play: Players are arranged in a large circle, with each player in a hula hoop or on a tile square. One or two players are in the middle without a partner. They are “standing alone”, hence the name, “Stand Alone”. Players around the edge of the circle play ONE game of Rock, Paper, Scissors with their partner. The “losers” quickly race to find another hoop before the players in the middle take the empty ones. Players who are unable to find a hoop go to the centre and everyone plays again. The players who are “standing alone” in the centre receive a point against them. Keep playing in this manner trying not to collect points. This game is a little link musical chairs without the chairs and without the music.


  • Play boys against girls. When a girl is in the middle the boys get a point, when a boy is in the middle girls get a point. 
  • Make it an active curriculum game. The player(s) in the middle must answer a math, science or language question. 

L.E.A.D. Newsletter October 2018

Cooperative Game - Keep it Clean

Equipment: 4 Beach Balls

See what team can keep the ball at play the longest.

  • Four teams with six players on each team.  The games are usually played on volleyball courts, two teams per court. 
  • Players number off 1-6.  The first player is holding the ball. 
  • The first player on each court starts the game by hitting the ball into the air and calling "one." 
  • The next player yells "two" while hitting the ball in an attempt to keep it from touching the ground. Players continue to count upwards as they hit the ball, this is how the score is kept. Once the player hits the ball they may not hit it again until their next turn.  
  • Anytime the ball hits the ground, is hit out of turn, or is caught, play stops and the score is given.  This is the total to try to beat next time.

Chicken Stretch (A great way to warm up)

It is best if you wait until you finish the instructions to tell them the name of the activity - it will be a great surprise for them to realize what they are doing.

  • In a circle explain that itis important to warm up one's body from head to toe before participating in physical games and activities. Start with the legs, stand tall and bring your knees to your chin (high knee march). Alternate legs and do this 10 times each.
  • Now work the arms by putting your thumbs under your armpits and flap but don't use the word "flap", say stretch your arms up and down 10 times.
  • Next, you need to warm up your vocal cords. Grab the skin at your throat and waggle it while making a guttural noise. Try other animal noises too.
  • To finish your warm-up you need to put it all together. You start off and encourage them to walk around with their knees up to their chins, flapping their arms and making animal noises that transition into chicken clucks. You have fooled them into acting like chickens - everyone is laughing and having fun!

L.E.A.D. Newsletter September 2018

Four Way Soccer

Equipment: 4 soccer balls and 6-8 cones/ground marker

  • Gather three or four soccer balls and enough cones to make up three or four nets.
  • Just like soccer, each team defends their own goal while trying to score against the other teams.
  • Each team can score on any of the other teams to get a point.

** Compared to traditional soccer, this game allows more people to play and come in contact with the ball keeping everyone active.

L.E.A.D. Newsletter June 2018

Cooperative Game - Peoples Ball

Equipment:  Ball


  1. Divide the hall widthwise into 4 areas with prisons for prisoners at each end.
  2. A centre line divides "A" team from "B" team. "A"'s tag "B"'s by throwing a ball into the "B" area to hit "B"'s below the knees. They cant move while they have the ball but can pass it among themselves.
  3. They cannot enter their prison to get the ball unless there are no prisoners. Tagged "B"'s go to prison at the "A" end.
  4. Prisoners escape by catching a ball thrown at them by their own team over the heads of "A" or by retrieving a ball which rolls into prison and tagging an "A" from prison. Same for "B" end.


Alien Invasion Tag

Equipment: 3 Dodgeballs, 3 Hula Hoops


  1. Set up three hula hoops across the middle of the playing area. These are the UFOs.
  2. Three people are chosen to be Aliens and have to stand in a UFO. Each is given a Meteoroid (a dodgeball).
  3. The other players are Astronauts. They have to run back and forth on the playing field past the Aliens.
  4. The Aliens try to tag the Astronauts by touching them or hitting them with a Meteoroid. Any Astronaut tagged has to help the Aliens by tagging other players and receiving their Meteoroids. Astronauts may not throw the Meteoroids.
  5. The last three Astronauts become Aliens in the next round.

General Newsletter  June 2018

Huckle Buckle

Equipment: None

  1. Partners have to meet and match up body parts.
  2. Everyone must find a partner. Have the partners split up and stand across from each other. The groups should form two lines at least 20 feet apart.
  3. The leader then says "Huckle Buckle—”, and then a body part. (e.g. Knees, elbows, hips, feet, etc.).
  4. The partners will then run towards each other and touch said body part.
  5. The last partnership to do it is out.
  6. Continue by calling out other body parts or combinations (e.g. elbow to shoulder).
  7. Sometimes the leader can say "Huckle Buckle Buckle!" and the partners must go back to back, link arms at the elbows and sit down.
  8. Continue until there is one winning partnership.

L.E.A.D. Newsletter May 2018

Cooperative Game - Balance Tag

Equipment:  8-10 Hoops and bean bags


Place 8-10 hula hoops in a scattered position about 10 feet apart.  Assign two taggers to chase the class.  The hoops are safe places, but the students must maintain a balance position with one hand inside the hoop and one foot outside the hoop.  Any loss of balance will mean that they must leave and run away from the chasers. Anybody that is tagged must go to a sideline and do a set of exercises 10 times before re-entering the game. Change taggers and different balance positions often.


Do not have hoops? Use non-slip tape to mark the safe space


Pip, Squeak and Herman

Equipment: Bean bag

Objective: Work together to steal a bean bag from the middle.


  1. Split the group into teams of three.
  2. In each team, the players designate themselves as either Pip, Squeak, or Herman.
  3. Once that’s all decided, the teams come back and form a large circle. The team members should still be beside each other.
  4. Place a pile of bean bags (one per team), in the middle of the play area.
  5. The leader/teacher calls one of the names.
  6. The players with that name have to run around the circle.
  7. While they run, the other two players on their team form an arch with their arms.
  8. When the player comes back to their team, they run through the arch, grab a bean bag from the middle, and go back to their teams.
  9. As the game goes one, take away bean bags from the centre. The team who doesn’t get a bean bag is eliminated.

General Newsletter May 2018

Tic-Tac-Toe Relay

Equipment: 10 bean bags (5 in one colour, 5 in another colour); Skipping ropes (to make the tic-tac-toe grid)



  1. Break students into small teams of 5 and pair up two teams. Each group (10 students) will need 4 skipping ropes to create their tic tac toe grid and 5 bean bags of one colour for each group of 5.
  2. Have a couple students build a tic-tac-toe grid at one end of the gym.
  3. To decide which team goes first play Rock-Paper-Scissors. The winning group starts the relay by one player running down to the tic-tac-toe grid to place one of their bean bags.
  4. The player runs back and tags the hand of a player on the opposite team, who then runs down to place their different coloured bean bag on the tic-tac-toe grid.
  5. Continue in this relay fashion to play tic-tac-toe.


You can have the students moving in various ways: skipping, hopping, jumping, side shuffle, etc.

General Newsletter April 2018

Bad Egg

Equipment: Ball
Directions: Catch the ball, then try to hit someone.

  1. Everyone stands in a circle.
  2. One player, who’s the Thrower, stands in the middle with a ball.
  3. They call out a name and throw the ball high into the air.
  4. The person whose name is called is now It, and they run up and try to catch the ball. The rest of the players (including the Thrower) scatter.
  5. If the person who is It doesn’t catch the ball, the Thrower throws it in the air again, saying a different name.
  6. If the player who is It catches the ball, they shout, “Freeze!”
  7. Everyone freezes where they are.
  8. Once everyone’s frozen, It picks someone and tries to hit them (lightly) with the ball.
  9. If they miss, that person gets to be the new Thrower for the next round.
  10. If they hit the person, then It gets to be the next Thrower.
  11. The game repeats.


  • Throw the ball against the wall instead of up in the air
  • Stand in a line or scatter
  • Have more then one person throw a ball

L.E.A.D. Newsletter April 2018

Cooperative Game - Jewels in the Crown
Equipment: 4 Hula Hoops and bean bags

Objective: Students are trying to collect as many bean bags as they can.

Directions: Four hoops are set up in the four corners of the activity area. At each hoop there are 3-4 students, and inside each hoop there are the same number of bean bags as there are students at that hoop.

  1. On a signal from the teacher, all the students begin to travel to other hoops and pick up bean bags (one at a time) and place it in their "home" hoop. No guarding of hoops is allowed.
  2. On a stop signal from the teacher, all students return to their "home" hoop and a count may be taken of bean bags at each hoop (scoring is optional).
  3. The game resumes on the signal from the teacher.  Have two or more games going on at once. 


  • Instead of bean bags try using scarves 
  • Scatter hoops around the room rather than placing them in the four corners of the gym
  • Use more than 4 hoops to accommodate a larger group


Equipment: Hula Hoops

Directions: Sabres is similar to capture the flag, but with hula hoops.

  1. Split the group into teams.
  2. Each team gets three hoops (each team should get a different colour). The hula hoops are called Sabres.
  3. While the other team is out of the playing area/lying face down so they can’t see, one team hides their Sabres by lying them on the ground, and vice versa.
  4. The goal is to get someone standing in all the opposite team’s Sabres.
  5. People can tag each other, and the tagged person must freeze with their legs spread. Another member of their team can crawl through their legs to unfreeze them.
  6. One person can guard each Sabre, but they have to be at least ten feet away unless they are actively chasing someone.
  7. Once someone is standing in a Sabre, they are safe (but can’t move outside of it).
  8. The first team to claim all the Sabres wins!

L.E.A.D. Newsletter March 2018

Cooperative Game - Keep it Clean

Equipment: Ball or several balls

Objective: Try to pass the ball between partners without letting the ball touch the ground.  If the task is too difficult, then choose another ball that is easier to pass. If the task is too simple, then choose another ball that is harder to pass. 

Directions: Form students into groups of three or four. The group chooses a ball they would like to pass to one another. One of the group members will start the activity by tossing the ball to a partner, who will then pass the ball to another player using any style of pass within their repertoire.

** This is a great winter game, have the students try and keep the ball(s) snow free!


Snowy Hopscotch

Equipment: Ball, food coloring, water bottle

Directions: Hopscotch is typically considered a summer game, however a snowy hopscotch game adds a winter twist. A few drops of food coloring added to water in a spray bottle creates a simple snow paint. Use the paint to draw the hopscotch grid in the snow. Use the ball instead of a rock.

The standard rules apply to snowy hopscotch. The squares are numbered from 1 to 10. The players take turns tossing the snowball into the first square, jumping over it to navigate down the grid and back. The ball is picked up on the way back. This continues with the players progressively throwing the ball into the higher-numbered squares.

**This is a great game for recess, phys ed or DPA as it allows youth to practice their hopping and jumping fundamental movement skills in a winter environment. 

General Newsletter March 2018

Winter Pie
Equipment: None


Winter Pie is a modified version of tag that can be played in the snow. Without your children nearby, head into the snow and stomp a large circle with your feet. The circle should be at least 10 feet in diameter. Then stomp lines from the outside of the circle into the center of the circle, as if you were cutting pieces of pie. When you're finished, you should have a large circle sectioned off like a pie. Invite the players outside and explain that they're going to play tag but that they must stay on the lines of the pie. The center area is "safe," but only one player can stand in the safe spot at a time. Then begin playing with regular tag rules, with someone being "it" and attempting to catch the other players.

L.E.A.D. Newsletter February 2018

Cooperative Game - Hold the Rope Relay

Place all of the bean bags or other objects at one end of the playing area. The teams will line up on the opposite end of the playing area. On the signal, the teams must race to the bean bags keeping all hands on the rope. Once each player from the team has balanced a bean bag, the team must stop, and the person has to re-balance the bean bag before the whole team can continue. The first team to reach the finish line wins.


  • Adjust the difficulty by reducing/increasing the number of players
  • Use a different item (anything that can be balanced or worn) for example, a Frisbee, eraser or sheet of paper.

Jump Rope Math

Equipment: small or large skipping rope depending on the number of players

Give a math equation to solve, like 2+5. The jumper repeats the math equation and then jumps the answer (in this case, they would jump 7 times). Use more complicated equations to practice math and jumping skills.


  • This variation involves three or more kids using a long double dutch rope. On each end of the rope is a "turner" and in the middle is the "jumper". The two turners each yell out a number. The jumper combine the numbers (either multiplies, adds or subjects depending on the rules you decide to use) and jumps the answer
  • Turn this game into a competition with multiple kids by making it an elimination game. For example, if you have six kids, two are turners and four are jumpers. The jumpers form a line and take turns jumping. If someone jumps the wrong number or makes a mistake while jumping, they are eliminated. The last jumper remaining is the winner. 

General Newsletter February 2018

Copy the Fox

Directions: Try this skipping game during Phys Ed, recess or DPA to improve your heart health by having fun.

  1. Everyone line sup ready to enter the rope on their turn
  2. The first skipper enters the rope and chooses a step. After exiting the rope, the other skippers jump in and copy that move next..
  3. The second skipper then enters the rope and completes two moves linked together. Once the second skipper has exited, the other players take turns trying to mimic the 2 moves
  4. The third skippers enters and links three moves together, the others have to copy the routine and so on. 

General Newsletter January 2018

Spelling Bee Jive

This is ideal if you are teaching children about words, to spell or helping the with their spelling test.  Everyo
ne can either walk on the spot, jump, skip, or high step for all of the consonants.

For vowels, pick an action for each one. For example:

  • A - High five the air or another play
  • E - Touch your toes
  • I - Stride jumps in front of each leg
  • O - Lunge to the side, each leg
  • U - Squat     

Have children spell out different words while doing the action connected to each letter. This game will keep your kids active indoors or outdoors while learning how to spell.                                                                                               

LEAD Newsletter January 2018

Cooperative Game - Pac Man Tag

Equipment:  Cones for boundaries

Activity: This game is where the students have to stay on the lines of the gym floor or on a large outdoor playground stencil. Designate which colored lines are considered in bounds or that they must stay on. You can use all or some of the lines. The "it" person must stay on the lines also. Everyone moves around the gym on the designated lines trying not to get tagged. You can play it where the person who gets tagged becomes "it" or each additional person that is tagged joins the original "it" person and teams up to get the rest of the class.

**Remember all of the is done on the lines only. You can start out only letting the students walk and then work up to running. 


Equipment: Paper and pencils

Activity: Find things beginning with the same letter as your name or letter your group has been assigned

  1. Split the group into teams with the first letter of their first name 
  2. Set the timer for three minutes
  3. In teams students must find all the things within the playing space that start with the same letter as their name
  4. Once the timer is up, the team with the most objects wins!


  • Set the timer for shorter or longer periods
  • Make the groups smaller or pair up individuals

LEAD Newsletter December 2017

Cooperative Games
Cooperative games give student L.E.A.D.ers the opportunity to build empathy and to understand what it feels like to be part of a healthy team. Through unstructured play L.E.A.D.ers will pass on this knowledge and teach younger students the benefits of having a sense of community belonging and teamwork at recess. 
Try playing this game during your Monthly Meeting this month to increases teamwork and cooperation among your L.E.A.D.ers!

Toss the Bird
This is a tag game with a twist. The “bird” can be a knotted towel or some other soft object suitable for throwing. You can have as many as you think are necessary.  The point is that you can’t be tagged if you are holding a bird. People can toss the bird(s) to each other to help “protect” each other from being caught.  Obviously you will want to have fewer birds than you have people who are being chased. More than one person can be “it.”         

General Newsletter December 2017

Winter Bowling

Equipment: 10 Water bottles (fill with snow), small ball
Bottles are arranged in the ten-pin formation on a hard surface.
One player rolls at the pins, another replaces them as they are knocked over and calls the score. Change roles after each turn.                                                                                                                         

  • Vary number: Decrease or increase the number of pins
  • Vary distance: Decrease or increase the distance of the pins from the player
  • Make it math game! Label the pins with a number and have each player add up the numbers on the pins they knock over

LEAD Newsletter November 2017

Fall Scavenger Hunt

Get outdoors and keep your child moving with this fun scavenger hunt!
  • 5 Red Leaves
  • 6 Orange Leaves
  • 1 Rock/Stone
  • 4 Pine Cones
  • 2 Acorns
  • 3 Green Leaves
  • 1 Piece of Britch Bark
  • 4 Yellow Leaves
  • 1 Flower
  • 2 Tall trees
Bonus: This game allows younger children to practice their counting. If you would like to make it more challenging for older youth, try setting a timer to see who can complete it the fastest!
For a printable version of this list download the file below.
Fall Scavenger Hunt.docx
Microsoft Word Document 247.8 KB

General Newsletter November 2017 

Chicken Basketball

Equipment: 2 baskets; Rubber chicken
Instead of a ball, it's a chicken. Build teamwork by passing the chicken rather than dribbling.

  1. Form a court with two baskets, such as laundry baskets or buckets at each end (if you do not have bucks try using a hulla hoop as a target)
  2. Split the group into two or more teams (no more than six players per team)
  3. The chicken acts as the ball
  4. When you are in possession of the chicken, you may not walk or dribble. You can only pivot, pass to another player, or shoot the chicken into the basket
  5. Players can only take 4 steps and then they have to pass the chicken to a teammate
  6. The team with the most points at the end wins!

General Newsletter October 2017 - Halloween Game

Pumpkin Bean Bag Toss

Equipment: bean bags or balls (or use balls of scrap paper), paper, marker, tape, 4-6 pumpkin buckets from the dollar store (depending on the size of your group, no more then six children to one bucket)

This Halloween themed game could not be more simple! Using paper and a marker create signs with numbers on them to tape to the front of the bucket (i.e. 1-10, or 100, 200, 300 etc.) Place buckets 1-2 meters away from the throwing spot. You can arrange them in a line, triangle or spread them out for more of a challenge. Take turns having everyone try and throw bean bags or balls into the bucket. As you play have everyone keep track of their points, at the end of the game the player with the highest score wins!


Lead Newsletter October 2017 - Family Activity Game of the Month

Got Ya!

Equipment: Beach Ball
Draw a line with chalk or use the skipping rope to draw a boundary line.
One player goes on one side of the boundary line while everyone else goes on the other side. The single player takes the beach ball and tries to tag the other players. 

If tagged you have to do a challenge that the thrower gives you to do. Make the challenges active : 10 jumping jacks, 5 push ups ect.
Keep playing! Once you are hit twice you become the person that throws the ball.


Try this game on October 25th and get your family active and playing outside!

LEAD Newsletter June 2017 - Summer Fun Games

Summer Fun Games

Broom and Balloon: Each participant stick handles a balloon through a designated course.


Cookie on the Face Challenge: Start with a cookie on your forehead – using only your face muscles (no hands!) move the cookie down to your mouth


Pool Noodle JavelinSuspend a hula hoop from a tree.  Using pool noodles as javelins, see how many the kids can get through the hoop.


3-legged Race: Use a scarf to tie legs together, and long skipping rope for starting and finish line. 


Beach Ball Sandwich Relay:  Give each team a beach ball. From behind the starting line, the first two runners sandwich the ball between them, run to the other end of the field and back and pass the ball to the next two runners. If the ball drops, they must pick it up and resume.


Scoops and Balls: Have 2 teams with a scoop each, and a pile of items that can fit in the scoops (balls, beanbags, small items) for each team.  Create a target at the opposite end of play space for each team (can use chalk, tape or hula hoop to make target).  Using the scoops, launch items to other end, each item that lands within the target gets point.  You can assign points a variety of ways – one point if it lands in but rolls out, 2 points if it stays in, etc.  Each person launches once then goes to the back of the line.

VariationCould also play this game reverse – instead of launching items, you must catch them, the team that catches the most wins!


Scoops and Small Water Balloons: Played in partners (best to play outside!). Stand with space between and toss water balloon back and forth between scoops until it breaks. Try scooping different ways - overhand, underhand, standing sideways, standing backwards, overhead, ect.



EquipmentPlastic cups, elastics, push pins and paper clips (to make shoe cups), large amount of popped popcorn in basket at start line, 2 baskets at the end line

1. First, you'll need to make two pairs of shoe cups. To do this, use a pushpin to poke holes in the bottom of plastic cups. Push a wide rubber band through the holes, and secure it inside the cup with a paper clip.  Divide group into 2 teams.

2. The first player from each team straps cups on their shoes and fills them with popcorn from a bag at the starting line. They then run to the other end and empty the popcorn into a basket at the other end (assuming that they didn’t spill it ALL on their way there!) After they dump out the popcorn in the basket they race back, the next player follows suit.


Towel and Ball Volleyball:

Equipment: Towel  

1. Pair children up and give them one towel, each grab one end of the towel – have an opposing pair of children also with a towel between them.

2. Using a soft ball,  have them whip the towel to shoot the ball to the opposing team – how many times can they pass it back and forth?  For a little more excitement, use a water balloon instead of the ball.


Volcano's and Ice Cream Cones

1. Using ground markers as volcano's and ice cream cones spread around the room, some upright (as volcano's) and some upside down (as ice cream cones). 

2. Split children into 2 groups – one volcano's and one ice cream cones.  On “go” have the kids run around and flip the ground markers to their team cone type. 

3. Markers can be switched back and forth many times during the designated time.  After 2-3 minutes, call time.  The team with the most of their cone types flipped over at the end is the winner.                                                     

LEAD Newsletter May 2017 

Double Bubble

1. Have players pair up and decide on a wacky way to move (hopping on one foot, crawling, skipping, bumping hips, clapping hands).

2. While the twosomes are moving around performing their actions, the Leader yells, "Double bubble!"  At this point the pairs must join another group to make a foursome and again decide on a wacky way to move.

3. This pattern continues with the groups getting progressively larger upon each "Double bubble" command. When the group is finally in one large circle, it's time to see if everyone can move together in a wacky way.

4. To end the game, the leader yells, "Pop!" and everyone sits down.

Playocracy Newsletter May 2017

Team Trivia Challenge

Equipment: bucket/basket, bean bags and tape to create a designated “throw from line”


1.  Each team starts with 10 "X's" - keep track on blackboard, whiteboard or a sheet of paper.

2. Split group into 5 or 6 teams, depending on how fast you want the game to go.

3.  Each group gets a question- as a team they come up with one answer.  If they get it right they automatically get to erase two of their opponent’s X's from the board. They can take it from one team or split it between teams. If they get it wrong, move on to the next team.

4.  Before they take off these X's, though, they have a chance to increase their ability to earn more points to take from the other the other teams.  They get 3 bean bags - standing at the designated “throw from line”, they try to throw the bean bags (one at a time) into the bucket.  For each one that they get in, they get to take an additional point from an opposing team.

5. Once a team has all of their points removed, they still take turns answering questions, to get back on the board they need to get the question right and get bean bags in the basket.  If they do this they can earn up to 3 points back on the board.