Playworks Games Guide

Remember our post on Playworks a few weeks ago and all the awesome work they’re doing in Boston? Now we’d like to introduce you to their Games Library! You can register and get an electronic copy of the full Games Guide sent to you, or just use their Game Library online to find the perfect game for you and your family. The best part about Playworks’ Games Library is that you can search by age, what equipment you have, the size of your group, and how long you have to play.

For example, if you search for a game for 1 to 10 3rd to 5th graders, with no equipment? You get games like All Tangled Up and Partner Introductions. Each game comes with instructions on how to play, how to set up, and sometimes fun variations on the game. There are also goals listed for each game to show you how the game can help kids learn and grow.

Here are 2 examples of their many games!

All Tangled Up


Before You Start: 

  • Divide everyone into small groups of up to twelve and have them form a tight circle.

How to Play: 

  • The players take one hand and grab the hand of anyone in the group except the people standing next to them.
  • The players take their other hand and grab the hand of anyone in the group except the people standing next to them and the person they are already holding hands with.
  • The challenge is to get untangled without letting go of each other’s hands.
  • Emphasize that getting untangled requires a lot of communication and cooperation.


  • Make the groups larger.
  • Add restrictions to their communication methods.


Or try this variation of tag!

Triangle Tag


Before You Start: 

  • Divide players into groups of four with three of the four holding hands in a circle.
  • Help players choose one of the three players holding hands to be the “runner”, the person to be tagged.
  • Demonstrate safe tagging:
    • Light touch, like a butterfly wing, on the shoulder.
    • Unsafe tags: hard contact that might cause the person being tagged to fall.

Set Up: 

  • Designate a clear playing area.

How to Play: 

  • The player outside the circle is the “tagger”, trying to tag the runner.
  • The other two players holding hands in the circle will help to protect the designated runner by moving the circle in different directions.
  • The tagger cannot go inside the circle and s/he cannot lean on the arms of the people holding hands. Once the tagger has tagged the runner, the positions change.
  • Keep an eye on the play and make sure groups are changing positions.


  • Place a cone in the middle of the triangle and have players move around that cone.
  • Tornado Tag: Have the two players who are protecting the runner keep their eyes closed.

Go find some games to play outside this weekend!


(Images courtesy of Playworks)

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Posted in Active Fun, Featured Story #2, Homepage Slideshow
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