Blast Off

Blast Off

3, 2, 1... Blast Off! Develop strong running skills with this fun, no equipment game to suit groups of all sizes.

Set up

Designate an open playing space with a line marking or mark a line with two cones/markers. Children spread out side by side along the line, facing you.

How to play
Step 1:
  • Children practice running on the spot as you call out instructions;
    • "Turn on your engine" = start jogging slowly on the spot
    • "Engine is warming up" = jog faster and faster on the spot
    • "Engine is revving" = fast high knee lifts on the spot
Step 2:
  • When you call out "5...4...3...2...1...", children on the spot run as fast as they can, on the front of their foot
  • Call "Blast Off!", children sprint to the other side of the play area, and walk back
Step 3:
  • Repeat, add a tagger who chases the children on Blast Off if desired
Make it easier
  • Shorten the running distance
Make it harder
  • Try running backwards, or sideways!
  • Set up house hold objects (e.g. pillows) as planets for the astronauts to visit before returning to Earth - e.g., you must run to Saturn, then Jupiter, and then back!
Activity information
Age: 3-5 years, Kindergarten / Pre-school, Foundation, Year 1, Year 2, Year 3
Participants: 1 +
Equipment: Markers (optional)
Duration: 10 minutes
Skill focus
Explore these skills for teaching tips
Skill teaching

Before starting, break down the skill of running by focusing on one element at a time:

  • Arms: practice arms moving from 'hip to lip' while standing on the line
  • Feet: practice running on the spot, getting the children to focus on landing on the front of their foot
  • Knees: get the children to try and slap their knees with their hands to promote high knees while running on the spot
Activity summary
Physical literacy tips
  • Make it a story! Children are astronauts and must get to the moon as fast as possible to escape the aliens/collect shooting stars
  • If children tire quickly, try it as a partnered activity - one child shoots off on their space mission while the other gives instructions from the space station