In English, ‘tag’ most likely comes from the Middle English word tek, meaning ‘touch, slap’. In every culture of the world you’ll find tag games. I have fond memories in junior school of chasing my peers around playing Kiss Chasey. I would likely get a slap in the face if I tried that today!
Here are a few of my favourite Tag Games that you may like to play with your students or youth group.
Great to play on a large playground with lots of climbing gear. Have a bucket of tennis balls or bean bags. One player is ‘It’ . He/she gives the others a chance to run off. The player who is ‘It’ takes a tennis ball and chases after the other players. When players are tagged, they must run to the bucket, get a tennis ball, becoming a tagger as well. The game goes on until all players have been tagged. Then reverse the game with the last player to be tagged, becoming the new tagger. This player returns their ball back to the bucket, then runs off to tag the other players. As other players are tagged, they also put their balls in the bucket and join the tagging team.
A player is chosen to be ‘It’. He/she stands with their hand in the air and calls out loudly, “1, 2, 3 I am it!”. They then chase players within a boundary. Escaping players can form a group of three, hold hands, take a deep breath and hum loudly. These three players are safe from being tagged whilst holding hands and humming. As soon as one of them runs out of hum, they must break hands and run off. Any player tagged must stand with their hand in the air and call loudly, “1, 2, 3, I am it!”. Then continue the chase.
Great youth group game for larger groups. Each player attached three pegs to the back of their T-shirt. The game starts and all players run around and steal pegs from opponents’ backs. Give the tag game a time limit, and then all players count their captured pegs to see who wins. Can also play this game with velcro tail tags instead of pegs. I guess you would have to call the game ‘Tail Tag’ if you did that!
Giants, Wizards and Elves
Set up two teams. Each team has a team meeting and decides if the team is going to be either Elves, Wizards or Giants. Once decided, teams face off in the middle of the court. Toes must be touching the opponent’s toes. The youth group leader, or teacher, counts down (3, 2, 1), then all players act out (and call out) their chosen character. The team that has the more powerful character must chase the other team to their end zone, tagging players. Any player tagged must join the team that tagged them. Then teams have another team meeting and select a character again to repeat the process until one team runs out of players. Giants squash Elves. Elves chew legs of Wizards. Wizards cast spell on Giants.
Form teams with about 6 players in each team. Each team forms up as a long dragon with the player at the front being the head and the player at the back being the tail (this player tucks a long tail out of their pants). All the players in the team must hold onto the waist of the player in front of them. The game starts and the dragons move around and try and steal the tails from other teams. If a team loses its tail, it is out of the game. If a team breaks in two, then it is out of the game. The winner is the last dragon left in the game! This is an awesome team building game requiring strategy.
Wacki App Tag Games
Wacki App has a filter that will find you the perfect tag game for the amount of time you have to play, size group and age of the players. We have over a dozen tag games ready for you to try with your youth. There are plenty more outdoor group games or indoor youth group games on this website.