Outdoor Games for Children like Brain Freeze

games for children like brainfreeze

It’s turning into Spring. Hurrah! Time for outdoor games.

We were beginning to think winter would never leave. It hasn’t really been a terrible winter. But the thing is even though it is sunny and sometimes warm nowadays, the day soon becomes really nippy. It tells us winter is hanging on and if kids go out to play they still need warm clothes. I think it is the wind that’s causing it as it gets up to about 18-30 kms per hr which is quite high.

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So I find myself

thinking about games. I know there are a lot of games for indoor but I love outdoor games from all over the world. The picture on this blog has

the good old brain freeze. You know when you eat an ice cream or a frozen lemonade from Tim Horton’s too fast and bingo…Brain freeze. It’s really painful. even

in winter we try a brain freeze now and then. Thank goodness they still sell freezies in winter. I always think of it as a game because some of us win and some of us sure lose.

Outdoor games

When we say outdoor games there are some that you play outside or some that you use outside. For example when you have a long car journey, we always need games to pass the time away. I am not a fan of watching a screen for hours. This is a good one from activity village.

I Packed My Suitcase is a classic memory game which is useful for all sorts of occasions, from a doctor’s waiting room to a long car journey! You can adapt it to all ages of kids, and adults enjoy playing as much as children.

I Packed my Suitcase
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Age: 5+

The first player thinks of a word beginning with the letter ‘a’ and then says, for example:

“I packed my suitcase with an apple”

The next player repeats the sentence and adds something beginning with “b”, for example:

“I packed my suitcase with an apple and a banana”.

The next player adds a word beginning with “c”:

“I packed my suitcase with an apple, a banana and a canary.”

Play continues until someone can’t remember the list or makes a mistake. Depending on their age, you can either prompt them or disqualify them! Keep going until all players but one are disqualified, or until you reach the end of the alphabet.


If playing with young children, it helps to make the words as silly and colourful as possible. They are more likely to remember them!

If playing with older children, you can make the game even more difficult by choosing a noun and an adjective for each letter of the alphabet. For example,

“I packed my suitcase with an active antelope, a brown bear and a chilly chicken”.

Or there is

This traditional Chinese game can be played by 2 players or quite a large group. It develops quick thinking, addition and logic skills – but it’s also fun!

Throwing Fists game
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Age: 6+

On the count of 3, the children throw their fist out in front of them with anything from 0 fingers to 5 fingers extended. At the same time, one child (take it in turns) calls out a number. If the fingers extended add up to that number, the child wins.

Obviously, the child must call out a number which might come up. So if 2 children are playing, the numbers can be between 0 and 10; if 3 children are playing, between 0 and 15, and so on. Children must be careful to throw their fists on time, too, so that no child can be accused of changing her fingers after the number is called!

Kids will soon learn that if they are displaying zero fingers themselves they should call low, etc.

Teachers could use this game to learn about odds (“if three children are playing, what are the odds that the number will be called correctly”)

There is also Find the object

This is well known as an outdoor game especially when in a vehicle or moving around a space. This works if you have only one child. Someone says ‘ I think I spy something with the color red”  The child is free to guess until they give up or find it. The object can be in the vehicle or passing so this calls for some quick looking around. Once the object is found then the child has the turn.

Outdoor games also mean getting outside. The most fantastic game is skipping. You can skip in teams, singly or in pairs.

Today’s Parent has the sweetest listing of 6 different ways to jump rope. It is an art , a skill, a test. It’s not easy and they have the most awesome competitions in jump rope

6 fun ways to jump rope

They have the competitions all over the world . Here is a video from Africa

Crazy eh. Children will do whatever they set their minds to. Just give them a chance to excel. Games teach cooperation, discipline, respect for each other and understanding of competition, helps to maintain good health, makes them hungry so they need good food. Children should NEVER grow without having played great outdoor games which are supervised.



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Author, retired professor, researcher, loving children, loving life.

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