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General Hints On The Teaching of Games

Feb 29, 2008
Group games can prove extremely theraputic for children of all ages and following are some hints and advice for the smooth teaching of games. The following advice is to ensure all children in a group benefit from the playing of games and that maximum gain is made by all.


1. Always have players in a straight line, with their attention focused, before explaining a game.
2. In cold weather teach active games that need only short explanations, or else explain the game before going to the playground.
3. Whenever possible, reward good sportsmen or those who merit some special consideration, by making them leaders or by placing them in prominent positions.
4. Remember that children want to be leaders and to hold the conspicuous places.
5. Stress the moral development possible in every game.

a. Notice what possibilities there are for unfair play, and eliminate or overcome them.
b. Endeavor to bring out any elements which develop a sense of good sportsmanship and fair play. The players should take pride in playing the game in the right way and feel contempt for unfairness.
c. In relays, be sure to have players wait on the line to be tagged befn^ starting to run.
d. Emphasize the fact that not only does the individual who plays unfairly suffer, but the whole team.
e. Encourage friendly competition, but watch for any spirit of spitefulness or antagonism and take measures to prevent it.
f. Teach absolute respect for the decisions of the umpire.
g. Teach self-control never allow a player to start before the signal is given.


1. Racing for first choice. If there is a large group of children and the play space is out-of-doors, in order to determine who shall be choosers for sides, have them all race to a designated spot. The first and second ones to reach there may be the two choosers.
2. Counting off. A quick method is to have all participants placed in a straight line. Then let them number off by twos, threes, or fours, as the special game may require.
3. Teams on opposite sides of field. When it is necessary to have one team facing another on opposite sides of the field, have all players form a long line and march to where the teacher stands; then alternate ones turn to left or right and form two separate lines along the sides.
4. For forming a circle. This may be accomplished informally as a result of a simple command to form a circle, or the players may march in single file, the leader describing a curve so as to join hands with the person at the end of the line, all then facing inward. This same procedure with two lines marching side by side may be used to form concentric circles, or the players in one large circle may count by twos and the alternate numbers take one or two steps toward the center of the circle.


The method of allowing children to choose is not recommended for frequent use, since it wastes a good deal of tune and is apt to result in the same group's being chosen every time on a side. It also makes the unpopular children more conspicuous, as the same ones will always be left until the end, while on the other hand it makes a few very popular ones too conspicuous.

It is suggested that wherever the same group of children play together day after day, it is often a good plan to divide them into three or four permanent teams, of equal strength, give each team a name or color or some mark of distinction, and encourage a friendly spirit of competition. This would save time in choosing sides each day.

It is also a good plan to keep a chart with the results of each day's games on it. This is a good method for acquainting the child with the principles of team play and of good sportsmanship, the fundamentals of which cannot be taught too early. To encourage the spirit of sportsmanship, post a list of names, every month or two, of those children who are conspicuous as being "good sportsmen." This will influence others to try to become eligible for that title.


1. When you play a game always wish and try to win, otherwise your opponent will have no fun; but never wish to win so much that you cannot be happy without whining.
2. Seek to win only by fair and lawful means according to the rules of the game, and this will leave you without bitterness toward your opponent or shame before others.
3. Take pleasure in the game even though you do not obtain the victory; for the purpose of the game is not merely to win, but to find joy and strength in trying.
4. If you obtain the victory which you have so desired, think more of your good fortune than of your skill. This will make you grateful and ready to share with others the pleasure bestowed upon you; and truly this is both reasonable and profitable, for it is but little that any of us would win in this world were our fortunes not better than our deserts.
About the Author
Malcolm Blake has researched the field of games extensively and has also looked into the popular field of cheap PSP games.
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