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Senior Activity: Tabletop Hopscotch Game

Updated on May 31, 2016

Hopscotch Games ... No Hopping Required

Everyone remembers playing hopscotch as kid, and while jumping on one foot may no longer be a possibility, the game goes on. Tabletop Hopscotch is a fun and easy game to play with seniors that is great for a wide spectrum of ability levels. It is easy and fun to play and very social as many can gather around the large game. Also, because this game is based on the childhood hopscotch, it has a nostalgia factor that is very comfortable for some participants.

As an activity director, having games like this one in the closet can be a godsend when there is a gap in the schedule since it requires little planning or cleanup. It's also great for the budget since one small purchase can be used hundreds of times.

Tabletop Hopscotch Carpet

I like this carpet best for tabletop hopscotch because it is colorful and has large easy-to-read numbers. The carpet is approximately 3 feet across and fits perfectly on any standard size long table. It is also thin enough to roll up easily and store in a cabinet or closet.

Game 1: Dice Hopscotch - Gameplay

  1. Divide your group into two teams - one on each side.
  2. Both teams roll the dice and the team with the highest number goes first.
  3. In order for a team to move their piece, they must roll a 1 on either dice.
  4. On each turn the team rolls both dice. The goal for each turn is to roll the number on the next square they would be moving to. If either dice displays the number, or if they add up to it, they can move on.
  5. For example, if sitting on the number 2 square, a team is trying to get to the number 3. They may do so by rolling a 3 on either die, or by rolling a 1 and a 2 and adding them.
  6. The first team to reach the end of the mat wins, or if you wish to make the game longer, you can have them go up the mat and come back down.

Giant Foam Dice - They will love it!

I recommend giant foam dice like these for a few reasons:

  • One salty player will inevitably throw the dice at someone. Foam dice don't hurt.
  • The large dots make it easily visible for everyone so there is no cheating and everyone feels they are participating.
  • The large dice can be easily thrown to the next player so they and roll

Game 2: Beanbag Hopscotch - Gameplay

  1. Divide the group into teams. Small groups can play individually.
  2. Each team (or individual player) is given a colored beanbag, which acts as their gamepiece.
  3. On each turn, a the tosser for the team must throw the beanbag to the next number in line. If they land on it, they can stay, if not, they go back to the number they were just on.
  4. The first team to the end of the mat wins (or to make the game longer, they can go up and down the mat).

Keeping Score

A great scoreboard is a wise investment for any activities director. A scoreboard like this one can be used for hundreds of different games and gives even the silliest game some legitimacy.

Portable Manual Scorekeeper
Portable Manual Scorekeeper

The numbers on this scoreboard are nice and large so they can be easily seen, and folds flat when not in use.

 

Game 3: The Race for 100 - Gameplay

  1. Divide the group into two teams (or smaller groups can play individually).
  2. On their turn a team member throws a beanbag onto the hopscotch mat.
  3. The number they land on is added to their score. If they land on the mat, but not on a number they lose one point. If they miss the mat altogether, they get no points.
  4. The goal of the game is to reach 100 - exactly 100. If they go over 100, they must try to hit the mat, but miss a number in order to get back down to 100.
  5. The first team to reach exactly 100 wins.

The Reacher: An Activities Director Must Have

A reacher is a must have tool for ever activity director. Often when playing games or during an activity things will fall. It happens. Having a reacher like this one will make it easy to pick something up from under a table without anyone having to move out of the way. This is huge a time saver, and prevents people from being embarrassed about slowing down the game.

DMI Suction Cup Reacher Grabber, Lightweight, Easy to Use Trigger, Slip Resistant Suction Cup Tips, 33 Inch, Silver
DMI Suction Cup Reacher Grabber, Lightweight, Easy to Use Trigger, Slip Resistant Suction Cup Tips, 33 Inch, Silver

I suggest getting a good one, and avoiding the ones that fold in half. They just don't hold up. Also, I find the ones with suction cups pick things up best.

 

Does tabletop hopscotch look like a game that might work with your group? Have you played tabletop hopscotch? Do you have any ideas or tips for tabletop hopscotch?

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    • profile image

      anonymous 

      6 years ago

      I love when popular activities become adapted to include a wider participation!

    • bechand profile image

      bechand 

      7 years ago

      These are some great ideas. I am an occupational therapist that has worked with elderly a lot and this looks like a great game that this group could use safely. It is simple enough for the cognitively challenged, yet challenging and fun enough for seniors - while allowing them to do it in a seated position ! Great Idea !

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