Field Day is an end-of-the-year favorite! Kids love the chance to run around outside with their friends all day, participating in exciting and challenging events. The best field day games and activities include options for all kinds of students, no matter what their age, interests, or ability. This inclusive roundup can help make your field day a success for everyone involved.
- Classic Field Day Games
- More Field Day Games
- Relay Race Ideas
- Non-Strenuous Field Day Activities
- Water Games for Field Day
Classic Field Day Games
Field days have been around a long time, and some activities have become staples. Here are some classic field day games to add to your list of events.
- 100-Yard Dash
- Water Balloon Toss
- Wheelbarrow Race
- Three-Legged Race
- Sack Race
- Obstacle Course
- Egg-and-Spoon Race
- Backward Race
- Long Jump
More Field Day Games
Want to jazz up your standard list of games a bit? We love these fun and creative games, and your students will too.
Keep It Up
Each team joins hands in a circle, then works to keep a balloon in the air without letting go. The team that lasts the longest is the winner!
Learn more: Keep It Up at Kid-Friendly Things to Do
Kids love minute-to-win-it games (see all our favorites here), and this one is always a hilarious hit. Shove a ball into the foot of a pantyhose leg, then put the top of the hose over each student’s head. They race along a line of water bottles, trying to swing their “trunk” and knock over each bottle. First to the end wins!
Learn more: Kid-Friendly Things To Do
Hand and Foot Hopscotch
Trace outlines on the playground or tape papers to the floor representing right and left hands and feet. Mix up the order to make it tricky. Students race along, placing the correct hand or foot on every square in the row to advance.
Learn more: Boey Bear
Pass the Hoop
Kids join hands to form a long line. Then, they must pass a Hula-Hoop along the line without breaking the chain, stepping through it carefully to move it along.
Learn more: Camp Worldsong
Human Ring Toss
One team member tosses rings at the other in this life-sized ring toss game. The human “target” can move their body, but not their feet. (You can use Hula-Hoops, but large inflatable rings make this game a little safer.)
Learn more: Human Ring Toss at Kid-Friendly Things To Do
Go for a ride with this fun race. Kids pair up to pull each other across the field on a blanket. Even things out by having one kid pull on the way down, and the rider pull on the way back.
Learn more: Sweet Dreams Are Made of These
This football toss game is surprisingly easy to assemble. You can also just hang Hula-Hoops from a branch or pole—swinging targets make things even more challenging!
Learn more: Fundraising Directory
Frisbee golf is another one of those field day games that’s very easy to set up with inexpensive supplies. Set round laundry baskets into tomato cages pushed into the ground to arrange your course. Arm kids with Frisbees, and you’re ready to play!
Learn more: Hometalk
Pool Noodle Croquet
Make oversized croquet hoops from pool noodles, and grab some lightweight balls. You can hit the balls with more pool noodles, or try to kick them through the hoops as you make your way along the course.
Learn more: The Joys of Boys
Round up a big beach ball and some small parachutes (beach towels work too!). Teams work in pairs to catch and launch the ball back and forth over the net.
Learn more: TeamLaunchLight/YouTube
Coconut balls make this bowling game much more challenging—and hilarious! The uneven shape of the fruit means it will roll in ways kids will never expect.
Learn more: Fun-a-Day
Hungry Hungry Hippos
Turn the popular game Hungry Hungry Hippos into life-size mayhem! One student lays on their stomach on a scooter, holding a basket upside down in front of them. The other student grabs their legs and pushes them forward to grab as many pieces as possible. After everyone has had a turn, total up the pieces to find the winner.
Learn more: Hungry Hungry Hippos/YouTube
Frozen T-Shirt Race
Buy oversized T-shirts, wet them down and fold them, and stick them in the freezer overnight. For the race, each participant works to get their shirt thawed, unfolded, and then put it on first. So funny to watch!
Learn more: A Girl and a Glue Gun—Frozen T-Shirt Race
Get ready for some chaos with this one! Tie a balloon to each student’s ankle with a ribbon. Blow the whistle, and let kids loose trying to break each other’s balloons with their feet. Last one standing is the winner. (Make this a team game by issuing balloons of the same color to each teammate.)
Learn more: How to Have It All
This is just plain silly, but it’s so much fun. Kids use pool noodles to pick up rubber chickens and carry them to the finish line. This one’s easy to turn into a relay race.
Learn more: Mrs. Russell’s Room
Relay Race Ideas for Field Day
You can do the classic pass-the-baton relay race, of course. But these field day games put a new spin on the classic relay race and make the whole experience more fun for everyone.
Set up three rows of three Hula-Hoops to be the tic-tac-toe grid. Then, have teams race to try to get three in a row first. They’ll be surprised to learn a little strategy can really improve their chances!
Learn more: S&S Blog
Free Throw Relay
Teams line up at a basketball hoop free-throw line. Each team member must make a free throw before the next one can go. You can mix this up with layups or other types of shots too.
Throw on some music and grab a long pole, then challenge teams to a limbo relay. Everyone on the team must make it beneath the poles on each round, and the slowest team is eliminated. Lower the poles on each round until only one team can manage it.
Learn more: NOLA
Balloon Pop Relay
This one’s a classic: Each team member is given a balloon. One at a time, they race up to a chair, then sit on their balloon until it pops. Then they race back, tagging in the next team member. Tip: Underinflate the balloons a bit to make it a little more challenging. Or make them water balloons on a hot summer day!
Scooter and Plunger Relay Race
Scooter relay races are fun, but when you add in plungers, they get even better. In this version, kids must hold their feet up and use toilet plungers stuck to the floor to help them propel instead. Tricky, hilarious, and so fun!
Learn more: Wayne Area Technology Center
Over and Under
Kids stand in a single file line, about arms’ length apart. Students on each team count off as “ones” or “twos.” The “ones” will pass the balls over their heads, while the “twos” must pass between their legs. Give the first person a ball, then start the passing. After a few seconds, give each team a second ball, and then a few seconds later, a third. Each team must get all of their balls to the end of the line and then back to the beginning. Don’t be surprised when things get a bit nuts!
Here’s a classic relay, and all you need are some baseball bats. One at a time, team members race out onto the field and place their forehead on the end of a bat while the other end rests on the ground. In this position, they spin around five times, then try to make it back to the finish line so the next team member can go.
Learn more: Rockbrook
Get Dressed Relay
You’ll need lots of old clothes for this one: a box each of shirts, pants, and hats, at least, with enough items in each box for every player. (Make it more challenging by adding socks too!) Kids line up in teams. At the signal, the first player runs to each box and puts on one of each item of clothing over their existing clothes. When all items are all the way on, they race back and tag the next runner. The game continues until one team has everyone back at the start and “dressed” in their fun new outfits.
Beach Ball Relay
The task: Partners carry a beach ball to the end of the field and back. The twist: They can’t use their hands! If they drop the ball, they need to pick it back up without using their hands, or go back and start again. Each set of partners passes the ball to the next pair on the team, again without using their hands, until one team wins.
Learn more: Beach Ball Relay at Kid-Friendly Things to Do
This one’s fun with pattern blocks, but any kind of blocks will do. Kids race to the end, then build a tower of blocks following a set pattern or a certain number of blocks high. Once the judge verifies their accomplishment, they knock down the blocks and race back, tagging the next team member. Continue until one team’s players have all completed the challenge.
Non-Strenuous Field Day Activities
Not every kid loves running and jumping (and some of them can’t). Make sure field day is fun for everyone by including some of these non-physical activities. They let everyone shine!
After a TV show made this game popular, every kid wants to give it a try. Give each player 21 cups. Their goal is to stack them into a pyramid, then unstack them again, as fast as possible.
Learn more: Happy Mom Hacks
This game is pure silliness, and kids are gonna love it! Have them tip their heads back, then place a cookie on their foreheads. When you shout “Go!” they race to move the cookie from their foreheads to their mouths without using their hands.
Learn more: Happiness Is Homemade
This game requires a bit of skill, but it’s easy enough for anyone to try. Label cans or other containers with point amounts. Give each student five balls to toss, and total up their points at the end.
Learn more: Everyday Dishes
Make a 3 x 3 grid of plastic cups, one for each team. Fill the cups most of the way with water. Then give each team a bowl of Ping-Pong balls, and watch them race to get the balls into the cups until they make three in a row.
Learn more: Jeremy Mavis
This game is pretty easy to make with tomato cages and bamboo skewers. Each competitor pulls a stick, trying not to be the one who causes the balls to fall!
Learn more: Angela Parker—Pinterest
Flamingo Ring Toss
You could play ordinary ring toss, of course, but how fun is this version? Grab some lawn flamingos (you might even find them at the dollar store) and set them up. Then give each player a set of hoops and let them do their best.
Learn more: Sugar & Cloth
Give your word lovers a chance to show off their skills with an oversized game of Scrabble! Make the tiles from pieces of cardboard or card stock.
Learn more: Constantly Lovestruck
This clever take on beanbag toss is super-easy to set up. Simply label the rungs of a ladder with various point totals. Then let kids try to land their beanbags on the steps to build up points for their team.
Learn more: Landeelu
Buy or make some giant wooden dice, then compete at an outdoor game of Yahtzee. (Don’t tell kids they’re actually practicing their math skills on field day!)
Learn more: Life Sew Savory
Complete a scavenger hunt as a team, or make it an individual event. We’ve got tons of terrific scavenger hunt ideas here, including the alphabet hunt. Kids try to be the first to collect an object for every letter of the alphabet!
Water Games for Field Day
If you’re willing to let kids get a little damp (or, let’s face it, soaking wet), these are the games for you!
Fill the Bucket
Here’s a classic water game that’s easy to set up and always popular. Teams race to see who can fill their bucket first, using only the water they can carry in a sponge.
Learn more: The Resourceful Mama
Combine Dizzy Bats (above) with Fill the Bucket! After each player spins around with their forehead on the bat, they must pick up a tray of water glasses and carry it back to the finish line. They use any water that remains to fill up a bucket. Play continues until one team tops their bucket off!
Learn more: The Creative Bite
Pass the Water
We like this one best as a big team game. Kids line up, one after the other, each holding a cup. The person in front fills their cup with water, then pours it backward over their head into the next person’s cup. Play continues until the last person, who pours it into a bucket. Repeat as many times as needed to completely fill your bucket.
Learn more: A Girl and a Glue Gun—Pass the Water
Wooden Spoon Water Balloon Race
Kids must pick up a water balloon and balance it on a wooden spoon, then race to the finish line. If their balloon falls off and doesn’t pop, they can pick up and keep going. Otherwise, they have to head back to the start for a new one.
Learn more: Kara’s Party Ideas
Water Cup Race
Hang plastic cups on strings, then use squirt guns to push them along to the finish line. (Don’t want to use water? Have kids blow through straws to propel the cups instead.)
Learn more: All for the Boys
Give kids the chance to douse their teachers with a DIY dunk tank. Or divide kids into teams, and give each team a chance to soak the other. The team with the most wet players loses!
Learn more: The Happy Housewife
Have each team design and build a launcher. Then let them fire wet sponges to see which team’s goes the farthest.
Learn more: How Does She?
Drop diving rings, marbles, or other small objects in the bottom of a kiddie pool. Kids have one minute to use only their toes to pull out as many objects as they can. The one with the most items at the end wins.
Learn more: Play Party Plan
Water Balloon Piñatas
No candy in these piñatas … just water! Hang them high and arm kids with sticks to hit them. The first team or person to break all their balloons wins!
Learn more: Hello, Wonderful
Water Balloon Hunt and Fight
This water balloon fight variation is perfect for a hot afternoon. Number water balloons and lay them out on a field. Draw a number from the hat, and send kids out to find a balloon with that number. (There will be more kids than balloons, which is part of the fun.) Those that find the right number then get a chance to throw their balloon at any other player. If it hits and breaks, that player is out. If the player can catch it without it breaking, the thrower is out. Continue each round with a new number until there’s just one player left dry!
Learn more: Get Your Holiday On
What are your favorite field day games? Come exchange ideas on the WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook!
Plus, 31 elementary PE games your students will love.