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3A Games

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Here is a collection of six great games sent in by Ed Rajkowski from Rice, Minnesota.  3-8



Editor’s Note: Ed, we are happy to have had the opportunity to serve you during your long professional career. Thanks for the many articles you have sent us to share with other teachers. Have a great retirement!

Background: Here are a series of awesome, aerobic and active (3A) drills/games that can be used with upper elementary and middle school students.

Ready – Set – Hut!


- Footballs
- Cones
- Pinnies


Set-Up: In this football drill, the students are divided into partners. Each set of partners is given a football and stand behind a cone as shown in the diagram.

How We Play It: On the teacher’s command, the first player in line runs into the playing area and receives a pass from his partner. The receiver runs to the touchdown line and returns, scoring 1 point for the team. This person now becomes the new quarterback as his partner runs to receive a pass. The object of this drill is to see how many touchdowns can be scored during the 2-3-minute round.

The ball may not be thrown directly to a player beyond the touchdown line (end zone). If the pass is incomplete or fumbled, the receiver will get the ball and run back to the cone where he becomes the new quarterback. This continues until time is up. If there are more than two players per team, the players rotate being the receiver and quarterback.

Ready – Set – Hut!, Version #2


Set-Up: In this version, we add 3-4 defenders. Each defender wears a pinnie and is responsible for guarding the touchdown line.

How We Play It: The defenders are assigned to guard the touchdown line by tagging a receiver after the football is caught. Each defender may guard any receiver in his area of play, but may not intercept or knock down the football. One point is scored if the receiver is able to score a touchdown. Play continues as before, with the object of this drill being to score as many touchdowns as possible during the round. Change defenders as often as needed.

Ready – Set – Hut!, Version #3

Set-Up: In this version, the defenders are now allowed to intercept the ball, knock it down, and tag receivers.

How We Play It: As before, the defenders are assigned to guard the touchdown line by tagging a receiver after the football is caught. However, if the ball is intercepted, the defenders may now run it back the other way for a touchdown. When this happens, the quarterback and/or receiver will try to tag the runner before he runs past the team’s starting cone.

Aerobic Cricket Kickball


- Soccerball or Gatorskin ball
- Cones
- Bases
- Styrofoam pins

Set-Up: Use the available space to create as many games as possible. Have 4-6 players per team. The fielding team stands behind the cones with the kicking team stationed as shown. The outfield team has one player who is the catcher.


How We Play It: The first person kicks the ball into the playing area beyond the cones. When this happens, all of the players on the kicking team (including the kicker) run around the designated cone and back to the scoring base. The outfield team will retrieve the ball and roll it toward the styrofoam pins. If the kicking team is able to get all of its players back to the scoring base before the pin is knocked down, one point is scored. If there is still time, the catcher may throw the ball back across the restraining line for his team to try again. Play continues with the next kicker. After all of the kickers have had a turn, the teams change sides. If the ball is rolled or thrown in front of the restraining line, the kicking team automatically scores a run.

Teacher Tips: There are many variations that we have used with this game. These include: (1) allowing the catcher to arrange the three pins in any manner; (2) allowing a caught fly ball to be worth three points to the outfield team; (3) scoring one point for each runner who makes it home safely; and (4) having two kickers at a time.

Pigs in the Pen


- Five hula hoops
- Four nerfballs
- Flag football belts (optional)


Set-Up: This last game is for elementary-aged students. Place the five hoops about 30 feet apart from each other as shown in the diagram above. Four students are designated as the farmers (taggers) and are given a nerfball. The rest of the class in divided into four groups and stand with one foot inside their hula hoop.

How We Play It: The object of the game is to safely move from hoop to hoop without being tagged by one of the farmers. The farmers will use the nerfballs to tag the “pigs.” When tagged, a player must go to the center hoop (Pig Pen) and wait there until another player is able to free him. This is done by getting to the center hoop without being tagged. Play for several minutes and then change taggers. A modification of this game is to add flag football belts. Now the taggers will try to grab a flag from any of the players. When a flag is pulled, the player goes to the Pig Pen and waits to be rescued.

Pigs in the Pen, #2


How We Play It: In this version, the players try to earn points for their teams by running for a single (one point), double (two points), triple (three points), or a home run (four points). For example, if a player is able to safely run to an adjacent hoop, it is a single. If the player is able to get to the next hoop, it is a double, and so on. The players on each team start with one foot inside their designated hoop. Once a player decides to run the hoops in a certain direction (either clockwise or counterclockwise), he can only earn points by moving in the same direction. If tagged, the player goes to the center hoop. When rescued by a teammate, the runner must start over at the team’s hoop. Once a player get to a hoop, he must call out his status (i.e., yell “single” or “triple”) before running to another hoop. However, the student may trick the taggers by waiting a few seconds, facing in the opposite direction, and then calling out his status. Play for a certain time period (5-6 minutes) or until a player scores a home run. The team with the most points wins!

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