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10 Outdoor Games For Kids

Updated on October 3, 2011

I realize this is the age of the computer game, but if you'd like to get your kids off the net and into the garden this summer, you may want to tempt them with one of these outdoor games for children. These are all games I either loved as a kid, or wished I had. If you're my age, you probably remember them too -- and you'll probably want to play, as well! Take a look at the following 10 Outdoor Games for Kids and help your child realize there is more to life than The Sims!

Slip N Slide

Always wanted one, never had one, still moping about it. These things are cheap, fun and an awesome way to cool your kids off on a summer day. Yes, they need to be taught how to use them safely, but the same goes for riding bikes and rollerblading, no?

Super Soaker

Before the Super Soaker, the only type of water gun you could really expect to find in a toy store was a water pistol. You remember those transparent little things that shot about half a cup of water and then needed to be filled up again? Well, that's why the super soaker became so popular! And there are loads of models now. These are not just for boys, either! I'd love to have one!


Horseshoes may seem like a dull game, but I remember playing this with my cousin all summer when we were 12 and 13 and it was not boring at all. Of course, we were competitive enough that we were really playing and not just putzing about. You don't have to get the heavy type of horseshoes, either, you can get the rubber type that will be kind to your yard.


I can still remember the dragon tail kite I had when I was a kid. It was awesome. Rainbow colors and a very long tail (probably 20 ft or so) that looked amazing in the sun. Much as I loved it, it wasn't really possible to use it in the backyard, so you need to be willing to take your kid to the park for this one. Kites are awesome fun for the whole family!

How to Play Chinese Jumprope

Chinese Jumprope

Some of you may not know what Chinese Jumprope is, but let me just tell you, it's was the coolest game on the playground when I was about 6. You need 3 players (usually girls, as boys think it's too girlie) but it's better to have at least 4 so you can compete. 2 girls stand inside of the rope, with it draped around their ankles, forming a rectangle with the rope. Then the 3rd girl actually plays. See the video for instructions!


It's been a really long time since I've played hopscotch, but I do remember loving it in elementary school. I also remember begging for jumbo sidewalk chalk, so I could create my own hopscotch board at home, but my mother was not keen on having the driveway chalked up. Just an FYI to parents -- the stuff does wash away! If your kids love hopscotch, chalk is a pretty cheap expense, and it's not bad exercise for little kids.

Paddle Pass

To be very honest, I've no idea what this game is actually called -- but I loved it. LOVED it! You've got to have a little coordination to play it, though, so it might be difficult for small kids, but older elementary age is perfect. My grandparents had an old set (which must be antiques by now) and they were a lot of fun.


This was considered a very old-fashioned game when I was a kid, but I do recall being totally addicted to it around 12 years of age. I can't remember how I got my first jacks set, but I loved it. If you've got a little girl, or even a tween, she may love it, too!


Badminton is a game I loved as a kid. I have pics of me playing this game at 4 years old -- and I was good! There are family sets which come with shorter racquets, but as a kid I played with a normal sized one, so don't worry too much about that, unless your child seems to have trouble with the size. You can easily set these up anywhere, and the sets come with everything you need. And don't forget to buy extra shuttlecocks!


Another game I never played, but always wanted to. My aunt had a very cool croquet set in her shed, and every time we had a family get together, I begged to set it up, but the adults were always party poopers. I still want to play!


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