Thursday, June 15, 2017

5 Simple and Fun DIY Outdoor Games

School might not be out forever, but to your kids it probably seems that way. From playing outside in the sun, to spending time with our loved ones over a backyard campfire, summertime is for making memories. If you’re looking for fun ways to spend time outside with the family, here’s a few back yard games where at least the memories together can last forever. Let’s dust off your maker’s hat and get down to business. Don’t be worried at the sound of building these DIY games yourself, they are fun and simple enough for even first time do-it-yourselfers.

#1 Backyard Tight-Rope

Our first fun backyard game will have your kids training for the circus. Hours of playtime and all for the cost of tying two ropes around a couple trees. Who knew that this much fun could be so inexpensive? The creative folks over at have put together a great resource on this outdoor game idea and you’ll be surprised at just how easy it is.

little girl playing on a diy tight rope in her yard.

While it is simple to set up and for your kids to get the hang of, this game of balancing brings a lot to the playtime table. While learning what it’s like to walk on a tight rope, even if they don’t go on to use a flying trapeze, your kids will still get plenty of exercise, learn how to balance, practice their coordination and have a circus of fun.

Two little girls playing on a DIY tight rope in their backyard.

Like every game and playtime activity, please be sure your kids are up to the challenge. Supervise your little ones even if they seem confident about this activity. One way to make this a little more kid friendly is to place some large pillows and cushions around and underneath the tight rope.

#2 DIY Hula Hoop Games

Further proving that not every do it yourself project requires power tools, here are five fun and easy games that the kids will love and you’ll love to build. With just some spray paint, chalk, washers and hula hoops, you’ve got everything you need for hours of summertime fun.

little girl playing with hula hoops and creating a hopscotch.

Hula Hoop Hopscotch – A children’s classic made new again by laying out the hopscotch formation in Hula Hoops! There’s a reason this game has been a favorite for generations. Show the kids how it’s done and compete with them to see who can set the fastest time or have the most style.

Multiple little girls playing with hula hoops and creating a hopskotch with them.

Washer Races – A game of speed, hand-eye coordination, and sorting. Washer races will bring out the competition in any kid. Color coordinate painted washers with matching Hula Hoops and race to place them where they go. The fastest time can win here as well, but making sure to get all the colors right is the only way to stop the clock. Kids of all sizes can get in on the action, just move the hoops and washers a little further apart if some think it’s too easy.

Washer Toss – Lay out your hoops in a line and place a bucket at the end. Use your chalk to draw scores in each, placing the biggest prizes the furthest away. Line up from the same start and throw the washers at the targets. This one can be played by highest score, or for a more challenging game, pick a number and try to add up to it exactly. Be careful not to go over, or it’s back to the start!

Arrow Toss – Hang your Hula Hoops up from somewhere high and give your little ones a foam arrow or football to toss through. Accuracy is the aim of this game, can you make it through the hoop? You can assign points for different hoops or even for just getting it through a hoop. For more advanced play, try turning it into a game of horse. Anything you can do, I can do better­ – We’ll see about that!

Physical Challenge – For the Hula Hoop physical challenge, it’s time to get creative. Lay out your hoops on the sidewalk or asphalt, somewhere you can draw with chalk. In the middle of each hoop, write out a challenge to be performed when someone gets there. For example, make a funny face, spin three times, sing a song, or do some jumping jacks. If exercise isn’t your thing, try songs from your favorite movies, dances, knock-knock jokes, or impersonations. You know your kids best, what would they love most?

#3 DIY Scatter-Molkky Yard Game

Here’s a game that we’re all but certain your kids have never heard of. What better way to keep things interesting than by giving them a game that’s brand new to them and all their friends? Molkky, which also goes by the name Scatter, could be described as a game that’s a cross somewhere between bowling and horseshoes, if everything was made of wood. This outdoor game will require a couple more supplies, but it will still be easy and well worth it. For a complete list of steps, be sure to check out the resource that has put together. You’ll be able to find dimensions, steps, and how-to guides for cutting the pieces out of dowels.

A molkky game set being spray painted.

#4 DIY Pool Noodle Games

Giant yard games do not have to be giantly difficult. This fun backyard game is made out of the summertime staple: the pool noodle. Pool Noodle Ring Toss is made from creating rings out of the noodles by duct taping them in a circle, then placing them in the ground, held up by sticks. Arrange the ground sticks in different patterns and distances to add difficultly and you’re ready to play! This game is challenging enough that you may just find the parents being the competitive ones. When you’re all done with ring toss, these noodle rings can be used again and again. Try Frisbee, catch, Hula Hooping, and even role-playing as monster truck steering wheels; there is no limit to imagination!

Pool noodle ring toss being played by a little girl in the yard.

#5 DIY Ninja Warrior Backyard Obstacle Course

When it comes to fun backyard games, it doesn’t get any more awesome than pretending to be a ninja in your backyard obstacle course. Known to be a big hit with the boys, don’t forget that many girls want to be ninjas too; this obstacle course is for everybody. We saved the best for last with this one, but as it’s the best it’s going to require the most time to create too. For this obstacle course you’ll need wood, PVC piping, cutting skills, and space to run.

Two boys playing a DIY ninja warrior game in the backyard.

Sarah with walks us through a step-by-step overview of how to build your own ninja warrior obstacle course. Complete with hurdles, stepping stones, and balance beams, there’s a lot of combinations that your course can take. Don’t be surprised to find all of the neighborhood kids in your backyard this summer because what kid doesn’t want to be a ninja?

Do you and your kids have an outdoor game you love? We would love to hear about it and even feature your games on the blog. Make sure you share them with us in the comments below or on Instagram using the hashtag #MyAshleyHome.


Happy Playing!

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