Santa’s Workshop


Name of Activity:

Santa’s Workshop

Purpose of Activity:

This is a great aerobic fitness activity with students running the entire time, practicing fleeing and dodging skills, team strategy, and having fun as well!



Suggested Grade Level:


Materials Needed:

cones, polyspots, 2 boxes or containers, pinnies, 14-20 or more small items such as yarn balls, bean bags, stuffed animals, etc.

Description of Idea

Set up:
The playing area will be divided into two sides. Mark the centerline with polyspots, distinguishing one side from the other. Place a box or crate behind the end line of each side. The area behind the end line is the workshop area and is a safety zone for each side. The container will hold the “toys” and also mark the center of the workshop area. In one box place exactly half of the items you are playing with. Place the other half of the items in the box on the other team’s side. On one sideline of each team, mark an area with cones to be the “jail.” Split the class into two teams with one team wearing pinnies.

Explain that Santa has two workshops, one in the North Pole village and one in the South Pole village. Each year, the two villages compete to see who can build the most toys. Unfortunately, this year the elves have gone on strike and refuse to make any more toys. For each village to have enough toys to give to Santa, they must take the toys from the other village’s workshop and put them in their own workshop. If they are caught by someone from the other team while they are trying to do this, they will be sent to jail. The only way to get out of jail is if someone from your team runs into the jail without being tagged. Then that person may escort you back to your side. You may not be tagged if you are taking someone back to your side once you have gotten into the jail. You must go back to your side with that person, however. You may not go directly to the workshop. For teams to take toys from the other team, they must make it to the workshop (the area with the box holding the toys) and back without being tagged. If tagged, they must return the toy and go to jail. The workshop is a home base or safety zone. Students can not get tagged once inside the workshop area, until they again step out.

The goal of the game is to: 1) send all of the other team to jail, 2) obtain all of the toys for your workshop, or 3) have more toys in your workshop when Santa shows up (or when time runs out). Encourage the students to talk together about strategy. They can’t all be guarding and they can’t all be trying to get the toys. Teamwork is important in this game. Also encourage students to trade jobs when they are tired and need a break.

Assessment Ideas:

Have students reflect on the skill of team strategy by posing questions such as “How do you avoid getting tagged?” “What did your team do to help you get toys from the other workshop?” “What would you do differently next time to obtain more toys than the other team?”

Adaptations for Students with Disabilities:

Allow students with disabilities to be Santa, counting up the toys on each end after a determined amount of time and rewarding the winning village with the title of Santa’s Best Workshop!

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