Clean Up the Rubbish

A fun version of the traditional game for younger children. Great for large groups in the outdoors. 

Set up

Divide an area into two - you might use a natural obstacle in the play area such as a log, a sandpit or a piece of climbing equipment to throw over. Alternatively you can use cones to create a divide. Scatter lots of balls and beanbags on one side.


How to play
Step 1
  • Tell the children the story that someone has left their bedroom very messy and you all need to work together to clean it up
Step 2
  • Children clean up the room by throwing all the rubbish (balls or beanbags) to the other side
  • Children are encouraged to pick up one piece of rubbish at a time and use an overarm throw to send it over to the other side
Step 3
  • Once all the rubbish has been cleaned up, children move as a group to the other side and repeat
Make it easier
  • Choose a smaller distance or obstacle to throw over
Make it harder
  • Throw over a higher obstacle or greater distance
Activity information
Age: 2-3 years, 3-5 years
Participants: 1 +
Equipment: Balls
Duration: 10 minutes
Skill focus
Explore these skills for teaching tips
Skill teaching

Before starting, have all the children pick up an invisible ball and do an overarm throw. Emphasise the overarm throwing teaching cues:

  1. Stand side on like a surfer
  2. Make a big muscle arm
  3. Point and throw
Activity summary
Physical literacy tips
  • Encourage all children to have a go at throwing over the obstacle
  • Let children choose obstacles to throw over, ask them what can we throw over next?