Announcing the Healthiest and Most Popular Kid Games

How many do you remember?


We all know that recess can be healthy and fun. But how do we get the best of both worlds? That question was the focus of a new project at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and the Clinical Research Program at Children’s Hospital Boston. The project’s research team, led by Dr. Stavroula Osganian, recently created a recess environment for children and studied 30 different games, including Stop and Go, Tag, and Monkey in the Middle. Researchers examined every game to determine how much energy kids expend playing them. Then came the real test. After kids finished playing, the researchers asked kids to rank how much fun they had in each game.

By combining its findings, the research team has created the ultimate list of the healthiest, most exciting and most enjoyable recess activities. According to the research, the top four energy-burning, kid-approved games were:

Stop and Go
Pirate’s Treasure
Dragon’s Tail
Capture the Flag

The team has begun to share its findings with schools in order to make recess as physically active and fun as possible. Schools use the games to help kids who face particular risks and need activities that get their heart working and help burn calories. Teachers also share the games with groups of children to encourage an energy filled recess, which helps kids stay focused when they return to class. Thanks to this new research, schools have a great new tool to keep their kids moving in a healthy direction… while keeping the focus on play.

Check out the directions for all 30 tested games. Try  playing some of the games with your family and friends!

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