All Types of Catching


Explore catching with all types of balls and objects.  Use heavy, soft, big or small balls, balloons or beanbags can be used. Try catching with a bucket. 

Set up

Use any balls, beanbags or balloons that you have around your house. If you don't have any of these try a rolled-up pair of socks, scrunched balls of paper or soft toys.

How to play
Step 1
  • Try lots of different types of catching activities. Demonstrate first and then let your child/ren have a turn. Use a beanbag, rolled up sock, ball or balloon - whatever you have handy.
    • Pass a beanbag around your waist and then move it up to your head, circling your body
    • Pass a beanbag/ball around one knee and then thread it around the other, making the number 8 
    • Start with a beanbag balanced on your head and try to catch it as it falls off 
    • Roll a ball and chase after it
    • Roll a ball towards a wall and catch it as it rolls back, see if you can do this 5 times in a row
    • Throw a beanbag in the air and try to catch it. See how many times in a row you can catch it?
    • Now throw it higher
    • Sit down opposite each other and roll a ball to each other and back. Progress to bouncing the ball to each other
    • Have a go at throwing a beanbag to each other catching it in a bucket 
    Step 2
    • Ask questions;
      • What object is easier to catch?
      • What is the hardest?
      • Where do you look when you are catching?
      • What do you do with your hands when you catch?
    Step 3
    • Let your child come up with their own catching challenges that you have to try and do
    Make it easier
    • Use balloons for catching
    • Use a bucket to catch
    • Roll the ball along the ground to practice tracking the ball with your eyes
    • Use a velcro disc and ball
    Make it harder
    • Child stands further away from thrower
    • Add in smaller or bouncier balls
    Activity information
    Age: 2-3 years, 3-5 years, Kindergarten / Pre-school, Foundation, Year 1, Year 2, Year 3
    Participants: 1 +
    Equipment: Balls, Beanbags (optional), Balloons (optional), Soft toys (optional)
    Skill focus
    Explore these skills for teaching tips
    Skill teaching

    Before the activity, practice catching an invisible object with your child to get the catching technique correct. Show your child how to have butterfly fingers if the ball is coming up high and wriggly worm fingers if the ball is coming down low. Remember these cues:

    1. Eyes on the ball
    2. Soft fingers
    3. Butterfly hands: thumbs together and fingers pointing up for balls being caught above the waist
    4. Wriggly worms: fingers pointing down for balls being caught below the waist
    5. Move hands to the ball
    Physical literacy tips
    • Let your child choose what object they'd like to use
    • Ask your child to come up with catching activities
    • Start with catching challenges they can complete easily e.g., move the ball around their waist