Playground skipping games accomplish more than merely entertaining children. They teach children social skills and--more importantly--get children up and moving. Skipping games, while often played by girls, are perfectly acceptable for boys, too. Generations of children have played Hopscotch and variations of skipping games using skipping rope. Armed with simple tools, such as chalk, bean bags and ropes, children can skip their way to emotional and physical health.
Pass by a playground and you may see girls gathered around chalk outlines on the concrete. The girls are playing Hopscotch. Children use coloured chalk to draw Hopscotch squares in a grid pattern. (See Resources 1) The website, Kaboose, provides Hopscotch rules. Players draw a grid of squares upon which and across which players skip or hop with relative ease. Players use small objects, such as bean bags to throw into successive squares to determine the squares over which jumpers must skip. The game becomes challenging with multiple players. Players take turns when a skipper stumbles or lands in an occupied square. A player finishes the game when she throws her piece and skips to the end of the hopscotch grid and back to the beginning square. (See References 1)
Skipping rope games include many types, such as Alphabet, using skipping rope. According to FunAndGames.org, two girls turn the skipping rope as one girl skips in the middle. The girls chant a charming rhyme about a little girl's object of affection.
apple jam tart.
Tell me the name of your sweet heart."
The rope-turners speed up their rope-turning as they chant the alphabet. If or when the skipping girl trips, she has to name a boy whose name begins with the letter of the alphabet that the girls chanted at the point when she tripped. (See References 2)
The Birthday game brings skippers a chance to skip rope in unison. Two players turn the skipping rope as skippers wait in line to jump into the turning rope. The rope-turners chant the months of the year. When they chant the first skipper's birthday month, she jumps into the turning rope. The first skipper continues to skip as more jump in at their birthday months. Once all of the skippers are skipping with the rope, each jumps out when she hears her month. The rope-turners chant, according to the website, Treehouse TV,
"All in together
Never mind the weather
When I call your birthday
You must jump in
All out together
it's mighty fine weather
when it's your birthday
please jump out
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc. to 31" (See References 3)