You’re It!

Calling kids of all ages! Amerian Touch Tag Day is almost here — October 8.

Tag. I’d guess this game has been around for a long, long time. And, I would think that everyone has played some variation of Tag. It seems Tag is just something inside all of us. You don’t need any special equipment and the rules are simple.

All you need is someone else to play it with.

According to an article on primalplay.com, “There are so many physical skills involved in playing tag — skills that children grasph intuitively without any formal instruction. They learn how to control their muscles by accelerating and stopping while sprinting around. They improve their agility, balance, coordination, accuracy and precision as they evade tags. They learn how to pivot, focus and reach. And, yes, they learn the basics of tactics and strategy, as they learn how to evade capture from their rivals or to get tagged again so they can become the chaser if they so choose”.

Our celebration of Tag will begin with a conversation about games we like to play with our friends. I know Tag will make it onto the list. Then, we’ll read and discuss Lion & Tiger & Bear: Tag! You’re It! (Ethan Long). This is a fun story about friendship and patience (Yes! A bonus of discussion on patience!).

We’ll head outside and play Bandaid Tag. A quick reminder for my Kinder kids — we use two fingers to tag and never tag anywhere on the head or neck. That will help keep everyone safe.

In Bandaid Tag, everyone is “it” and can tag and be tagged. When a player is tagged, they take one hand and place it directly on the place where they were tagged. Their hand is the bandaid. Players continue to run around to try to tag and avoid being tagged. If a player is tagged a second time, the free hand becomes the second bandaid. If a player is tagged a third time, a trip to the hospital is in order. We’ll have a pre-determined area on our playground for the hospital. Once at the hospital, the player must do one of my requested actions.

I’ll vary the hospital actions based on the child entering the hospital. Does one of my students need practice counting backward from ten to zero? Then that’s part of their hospital visit, along with hopping, jumping jacks or sky reaches. Of course, I’ll add some silly actions and silly voices to their hospital visit.

Tag inside? Of course! We’ll play Arm & Leg Tag. Again, every player is “it” and we’re wanting to tag arms and legs. When a player’s arm or leg is tagged (tagging any other part of the body doesn’t count), then that part of the body can’t be used anymore. If an arm is tagged, it goes behind the player’s back. Same for the second arm. If leg one is tagged, then the player must hop on the other leg. If the second leg is tagged, the player must stop where they are. All four limbs tagged? The player is out of the game. The last player with a least one arm of leg left untagged is the winner.

Happy American Touch Tag Day!