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Old Favourites in RED

Chinese whispers Sit everyone in a circle.  Whisper a long phrase to one person.  They, in turn, whisper what they heard to the next person, and so on.  The last person announces what they heard.
Pass the Parcel  Wrap a bar of chocolate (or some other gift), in a layer of paper.  Now wrap it in another layer and repeat until you have about 10 layers.  Finally wrap it in gift paper (so it looks nice). 
Sit everyone in a circle and play a short snippet of music.  When the music stops, the person holding the parcel removes ONE layer of wrapping. Repeat until the last layer of wrapping has been removed. 
The winner keeps the present.
Pass the Parcel with forfeits  As above but every layer contains a forfeit (E.g Sing a song, Eat a teaspoon of Mustard, have your belly button filled with water).
The Chocolate (or Jelly) Game Sit everyone in a circle and place a tray in the middle with a hat, scarf, gloves, knife and fork, die and a wrapper bar of chocolate. 
In turn, players throw the die.  If they throw a SIX, they must put on the Hat, Scarf and Gloves before they start to unwrap the chocolate with the knife and fork, and then start to eat it. 
To speed up the game add a second die and require a Double SIX. 
The Jelly Variation is to turn out a set jelly onto a plate and eat it with the knife and fork.

Requires good reactions and good eye / body co-ordination. Age 10year and over.

  • Piece of thin rope
  • Some sort of lightweight that can be attached to the rope - small soft knot or hand brush.

Attach the weight to the end of the rope.

Arrange the participants in a ring.

One person stands in middle of ring with rope and swings rope around the ring so that the weighted end goes round where the participants are.

The members of the ring then have to jump to avoid the rope as it comes around.

The rope shouldn't be swung higher than knee level.

Anyone 'hit' by the rope is out.

The last person remaining is the winner.

(Whoever is in the centre swinging the rope gets very dizzy !!!). The speed of the rope can be varied to suit the ability of the participants.

Musical Chairs The old favorite.  With one fewer chairs than people, a short snippet of music is played while the people move around the room.  When the music stops everyone tries to sit on a vacant chair.  (Only ONE person per chair)  The person who doesn't find a chair is out.  One chair is taken away and the game continues until only one person (The Winner) is left.
Stave Dance. Good scout Game for co-ordination. All players in a circle. Each player has a 5-foot stave which they hold in front of them by putting their hands palm down on the top of it.
Caller shouts either ONE - TWO or THREE.
On the call ONE, players let go of their Stave and move one step RIGHT, grabbing their neighbor's stave before it falls over.
On the call TWO, players do the same but move LEFT.
On the call THREE, players do NOTHING.
Anyone not catching a stave or moving in the wrong direction is OUT!
Musical Statues This is like Musical Chairs, but when the music stops, the players have to keep still.  Anyone who moves, quivers, shakes etc is out.  The winner is the last one still playing.
Port and Starboard On the command (from the list below) the children have to do the appropriate action.  After a while, start removing the last player to comply, until only one remains. 
  • Port (Run to one side of the area - Left side)
  • Starboard (run to the other side - Right side)
  • Captains Coming Aboard (Stand to attention and Salute)
  • Captain's Wife Coming Aboard (Wolf Whistle)
  • Submarines (Lie on the floor)
  • Hoist the Mainsail (run on the spot - like climbing the rigging)
  • Mess Deck (Sit cross legged on the floor - ready for lunch)
  • Splice the Mainbrace (Pretend to pour and drink)
  • Davey Jones (Climb a tree, stand on a chair - anything so that you are not on the floor)
  • Up Periscope (Stand up straight and old hands to eyes as though looking through binoculars)
Mummies Split the party goers into teams of three and give each team a toilet roll.  Two persons then wrap the third in the toilet roll so that they look like an Egyptian Mummy.  The winning team is the one who in a set time (say 2 minutes) have the neatest and most covered Mummy. Try asking the Mummy to walk to the end of the hall without tearing the 'suit'.
Stations Everyone stands in a circle (except one who is standing in the middle) and has been told to remember a different station name.  The person in the middle calls out two names.  The stations have to change places quickly, before the person in the middle can get to one of the empty spaces.  Who ever is left without a place is the person in the middle for the next game. 
Pass the Orange Arrange for teams of about 8 to stand in a line, one behind the other.  Give each team an orange which the first person should tuck under his chin.  This should be passed to the person behind.  When the orange gets to the last person, they come to the front of the line and start again.  The winning team is the first one which gets their starting person to the front again.
Sleeping Pirate All the children (except one - The Pirate) sit Cross Legged on the floor in a circle.  The pirate sites Cross-legged in the middle of the circle, blind-folded, with a large bunch of keys on the floor in front of him. 
A child is nominated to creep up and take the keys and then return to their place, without the pirate hearing them.  The Pirate has three goes to point to where he thinks the raider is.  If he is successful, the raider becomes the Pirate.

Balloon Pop
Place notes inside un-inflated balloons,1 or 2 of the notes should indicate that this balloon is a winner. Inflate the balloons and hang them around. Let each child pick a balloon then pop it to see if their note is a winner. 

Balloon Relay
Divide the children into 2 or more equal teams and stand them in a line. Give each team ten balloons in a basket. The first in each line takes a balloon and runs to the other side of the room/yard/area and sits or stomps on the balloon to pop it.  After pooping the balloon they run back to the line and tag the next person who does the same thing. The game goes on until one team has popped all of their balloons. The winning team gets a small prize (like a ribbon) while EVERYONE gets a small toy.
Toy Walk (Beavers?) This is done like a cake walk.  Have numbers on the ground for as many children (1-10).  Walk on the numbers until the music stops.  Have numbers on some small toys.  If a child is standing on the number of the toy, they win the toy 

Can You Guess
Put several small items into a brown paper bag. Blindfold one person and hand them one of the items in the bag.  Give them a few seconds to guess what the item is.  If they are unsuccessful they are out. The last one wins. 
Stuck in the Mud One person is 'IT' and has to run round touching as many people as they can.   When they have touched someone, that person has to stop and stand with their legs apart and their hands outstretched, until someone crawls through their legs.  If you've been caught three times, then you are out.  The game ends when everyone left is standing still.

Teams compete in this game. For each team there is a chair with a bowl of water and a spoon on it. A few steps away there is another chair with an empty glass. The object for the team is to fill the empty glass with water as soon as possible. The team which is the first to do it is the winner.

For this game you'll need 2 large cardboard funnels. The opening in the narrow part of each funnel must not be larger than a coin, the opening in the wide part must be large enough to put it on the player's face. Beside the funnels you'll need 2 little wooden bricks and 4 chairs. To begin the game put 2 chairs in a line at a distance of 3-4 meters from each other. Opposite each chair (at the distance of 10-12 meters) put one more chair. Two players compete in this game. To begin with they sit on their chairs with the funnels in their hands. The bricks are at their feet on the floor. As the leader commands: "Begin!" - the players put the funnels on their faces (so as to see the floor only thorough the little opening) and begin to drive their bricks to "the goal" (the interval between the legs of the opposite chair). The player who copes with the task the first becomes the winner. But it's rather difficult to cope with this task, because the players can see only the little space of the floor in the little opening of the funnel, while after each kick the brick drops out of the field of vision. Advice for the leader: watch that the players don't take off their funnels (otherwise the game makes no sense), watch that the players kick the brick and don't drag it.


Pea In The Dark.
1) Split the pack into sixes (or suitable groups, this game can be played by any number of cubs) and position them around the hall.
2) Switch the lights out
3) Each team sends one at a time into the hall, to pick up as many dried peas that they can find.
4) After a short time, give the cubs a set time to return to their team and place the collected peas into a bag.
5) Next cub then goes in at your command.

We play this game in total dark, but when we want the cubs to return to their six, we switch one light back on so we can see that they are going back to base.  We also have a leader in each corner, and give the cubs a count down.  At time point zero, the bags are sealed, so no peas can be put in.  (Stops cubs cheating by trying to pick up peas when the lights are on.)  If you have not got enough leaders you can use a cub from another six, and then switch them round.  Can be interesting as they never want to let the others win.

Peas can be tossed into the play area at anytime during the game in order to keep the game going, or to keep them quiet so they can hear where the peas are landing. (No need to put them all in the middle)

Towards the end of the game, don't throw too many peas in the ring, as all you have to do is pick them up yourself.

Hope this is of use

  Have fun
Andy French
Akela, Great Amwell Otter Pack


PARTY GAMES - More variations

  • "Switch" - Begin with a quiet game like Switch. Divide the kids into two teams and take Team A into another room. Team A must switch various items of clothing or accessories with one another, then return to the game room. Team B must try to guess all the switches that have been made within a five-minute time period. Add up how many items Team B guessed correctly. Then let Team B have a turn to "switch" and let Team A guess the switches. The team with the most correct answers in the allotted time period wins a prize.

  • "Mummy Wrap" - Divide the kids into threes, with one the Mummy and the others the Mummy Wrappers. Give each wrapper a roll of toilet paper or crepe paper streamer. On the word "Go!" have the wrappers race to see who can wrap up their mummy first. The game is tricky because the faster they try to wrap, the more the tissue will tear, causing them to keep restarting!

  • "Price Is Right" - Here's a great wind-down game that also serves as the going-away favor. Buy inexpensive gifts for your guests, such as a big bag of candy, a small stuffed animal, a scary book, and so on. Distribute paper and pencil to each player. Hold up one item and have the kids try to guess how much it cost. Reveal the price tag and award the gift to the player who guessed the closest. That player is out of the game, while the rest continue guessing the prices of the gifts, until all of them are gone.

  • "Musical Present"- Gather the kids in a circle and give one of the children a wrapped present. Play music and have them pass the present around the circle. When the music stops, the child holding the present gets to keep it, and then drop out of the game. Start another present around the circle.

  • "Duck Duck Goose"- This is an old favorite! Gather the kids in a circle, and choose one child (usually the birthday boy/girl) to be the "ducker". The "ducker" gets to walk around the circle, tapping (not hitting!) each child on the head, electing to say "duck", or "goose". If the "ducker" says, "duck", then nothing happens. But if the "ducker" yells, "Goose!" then the "goosed" child gets up and runs around in an effort to tag the "ducker". If the child cannot catch the "ducker", then that child becomes the "ducker". If the "ducker" is caught, then he/she has to sit in the "soup" (the middle of the circle) until another "ducker" is caught.

  • "Balloon Bounce"- Have a contest to see who can keep the balloon in the air the longest using only their head. The person who can keep it in the air longest without using anything but their head is the winner. (This game can also be played in teams).

  • "Musical Chairs"- This is another children's favorite. Set up chairs in 2 rows back to back. Put out one less chair than there are children. Start playing music, and have the kids walk around the chairs (not touching the chairs though!) until the music stops. When the music stops, the kids must each sit on a chair. The child without a chair is "out". Then remove another chair. If there is ever a tie, the child with more body on the chair wins.

  • "Freeze Dance"- This game does not need much explanation. Put a group of kids in a room, play some music, and watch them dance. Then turn the music off during the song, and they must freeze in their current position. If they move at all, then they are "out". The people who are still in the game continue to dance/freeze as you control the music, until one person wins.

  • "Hot Potato"- This game is an old favorite. Have all of the kids sit in a circle, as one kid is chosen as the "leader". Begin passing a potato (or other object) around the circle, while the "leader" turns his/her head with eyes closed. Everyone must accept the potato, and may not hold it longer than a second. At any point the "leader" can yell, "Hot Potato", and whoever has the potato is out. Continue to play until there is only one person left, and he/she is the winner.

  • "Feather Blow"- Give each of the kids a feather. When you say, "GO!" the kids have to start blowing the feather in the air. Whoever can keep the feather in the air the longest (using only his/her breath) is the winner. This game can also be played in teams (the team to keep the feather in the air longest using only breath wins)

  • "Name That Animal"- This is a fun game for small children just beginning to learn their animals. Pass out animal stickers or small stuffed animals, and have the kids imitate the animal they receive.

  • "Dress-up Relay"- Make 2 piles of the same type of clothing. Divide the group into teams and have the first players race to dress up in all the clothes from one pile. When finished, he/she must take all the clothes off and have the next player dress up. The team that dresses and undresses first wins the game.

  • "Sense-Sational"- Test their powers of smell! Fill paper bags with a variety of items that have an aroma, such as coffee beans, salami, toothpaste, orange peels, chocolate, and so on. Be sure the smells are familiar to the age group. Then pass the bags around and let the kids smell them without looking inside! Give prizes to whoever guessed them all correctly (or whoever guessed the most correctly).

  • "Telephone"- Have the kids sit in a circle on the floor. The first player begins by whispering a phrase into the ear of the person next to him/her. One by one, each person repeats the whispered sentence as they hear it when it is whispered to them. When the last person receives the message, he/she repeats it out loud. It is usually completely different than the original statement. This game can also be played with goofy faces. The first person makes a goofy face, and then turns (with the goofy look on his/her face) to the next person. The goofy look is passed on until the last person and the first person compare goofy faces.

  • "Good Guess"- Find a variety of items that your guests can guess "How much…" For example, "How many jellybeans in a jar," "How many words on a page in a book," "How many crackers in a bag of oyster crackers," "How many pages in a magazine". Award a prize to the person who has the closest guess for each item.

  • "Human String Relay"- First of all, you need to tie a spoon to the end of a ball of yarn. Line up both teams single-file. When the host/hostess says, "Go," the first person from each team must put the spoon down his shirt, as well as his pants. When it comes out of his pant leg, he must then pass it to the next player (As it is still attached to the first player). When it has gone through the entire line, and everyone is attached, then the last person at the end of the line must reverse the process (While the first person winds the string into a ball as it comes back out of each person's clothing). When the team finishes unwinding the string then the first person in that line needs to shout, "Done!" The team to finish unwinding the string first wins.

Know a GOOD Game for Scouts? - send it to paulcg at shurdington dot org (written in the e-mail way)


Copyright since 1998 Paul Calleja-Gera - All rights reserved.

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