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Steal the Shamrocks

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While St. Patrick’s Day isn’t until March, here’s a game idea that can be modified for most seasonal events.


- 1 green scooter for each Leprechaun (4-6)
- 1 green noodle for each Leprechaun
- Lots and lots of laminated Shamrock cut-outs
- Polyspots to scatter on gym floor
- 1 “Shamrock Bucket” for each team

CLASS SET-UP Divide the class into teams. We generally have 4-6 teams and sometimes as many as eight for our larger classes. Select four students to be the Leprechauns. Each team stands behind their container (Shamrock Bucket) on one end of the gym. Scatter the Shamrocks on the other side of the gym. The Leprechauns sit on scooters and guard their Shamrocks. Each Leprechaun has a green pool noodle that is used to tag (not hit) players who try to take a Shamrock.

HOW WE DO IT On the teacher’s signal, the first players from each team run across the playing area to “steal a Shamrock.” If tagged by a Leprechaun, the student runs back to his team, touches the hand of the next player, and goes to the end of the line. If tagged while possessing a Shamrock, the Shamrock is left on the ground.
If the student is successful in getting a Shamrock without being tagged, he places it in the team’s bucket. Play the activity in 2-3 minute rounds. When all of the Shamrocks have been taken, each team counts up the number of Shamrocks in their “Shamrock Bucket.” We select four new Leprechauns and begin another round of play.

VARIATIONS Here are two variations to try:

  • You can also play this activity by providing each team with a scooter. The students use the scooter to get to the “Field of Shamrocks” and back as shown above.
  • Provide each team with a basket- ball. The students dribble the ball to the Shamrocks, grab one with their free hand, and dribble back.
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