Nature Games

Animal Forms: Line up in a row at a starting place.  Mark an ending line about 20 feet away across a relatively flat area.  Call out animals – deer, bear, crab, etc. – on at a time.  Have the parents and kids get into that animal form and move across the space in that mind.  It’s not a race!  It’s an exercise to “be” that animal.

Camouflage: The seeker stands in one place and counts. Everyone else hides as close to the seeker as possible, but they must be able to see the seeker. The goal is to be camouflaged and to not move, as any movement will alert the seeker. After counting, the seeker spends about 5 minutes pointing out anyone he can see. Then, he holds up a number of fingers, which the unfound hiders must be able to see. Then, the hiders stand up in their hiding places. The person closest to the seeker who knows the number of fingers held up is the winner. It’s a great exercise in holding still and being calm.

Hawks & Voles:  Draw about 5 large circles in the sand to be the Vole holes.  One child is assigned to be a Hawk.  The goal is to tag the Voles (the rest of the kids and parents) when they come out of their holes to eat.  Voles can only stay in their hole for 10 seconds.  Then they must run out to a different hole.  If a Vole is tagged, they become a Hawk too.  When 1-2 kids are left as Voles, start a new round with the remaining Voles as the beginning Hawks.

Tail Tag: Give the parents and kids a cloth tail (ours are about 2 feet long and ripped from an old sheet).  Tuck about 6 inches into a pocket or the waistband of your pants.  Do not tie the tail onto your pants!  It should be easy to pull out, but not fall out.  Pick an animal form and chase each other for tails.  If your tail is stolen, sit down.  You can still grab a tail if someone runs by, but you may not get up.  If you are a successful tail grabber, and end up with many tails, share with a sitting player.  Which animals work the best?

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