To start planning my first step was to come up with some simple games that could be done with a soft football. I figured activities that involved "playing football" were kind of a must at this kind of program. The kids who attend "Kidding Around" are still pretty young (in Kindergarten through 2nd grade) so I also wanted to keep it as easy and active as possible. After that I filled out the rest of the program with some classic kid's games that I gave a football themed twist.
I find beginning a program with an active game gets the kids engaged and breaks the ice with any new attendees, so we started out by dividing into pairs and throwing some soft mini footballs back and forth. The goal was to throw it back and forth as many times as possible without dropping it. This definitely proved a little more difficult for the kids than I initially anticipated, but still seemed to be something they all enjoyed doing. After that I provided a little easier challenge and we took turns throwing the footballs through a hula hoop I held a few feet in front of them.
Next we "practiced making field goals", a.k.a. played a football themed version of Pin the Tail on the Donkey. I called it Pin the Football on the Goalpost, and here are my templates for the goalpost and footballs in case you would like to use them.
Our final game was one of the highlights of the program: a football themed version of Bingo . I created this game with this awesome picture Bingo creator. This particular Bingo creator is one of my favorite resources for this age group because their reading levels vary too widely to play themed versions of Bingo that involve reading. Picture Bingo works great with struggling readers of any age, and would also be perfect to use with ESL students.
Craft and snack time closed out the program as usual. Our craft was a coloring page with a football helmet and jersey, because I really couldn't find any more involved football themed crafts I wanted to do with them. Because it is a Big Game party the snacks were the focus at this point anyways. I chose chocolate cupcakes (topped with printable football cutouts), chips, pretzels and popcorn.
All in all this was an inexpensive and fun program. The only costs involved were for snacks (about $5) and squishy footballs ($1 each at my local Dollar Store). I would definitely repeat this program again in the future.
If you have any questions about this program you can reach me in the comments or on Twitter (@MsKellyTweets). Next month's Kidding Around is a birthday party for Dr. Seuss, so Seuss related program ideas are also greatly appreciated!