SNOWMAN DOWN! / ELF SWITCH – 2 holiday games with similar setup


For this week’s GAME OF THE WEEK I’ve included two holiday games that have a very similar setup. Each year I play them back to back because they allow for a seamless transition.


My students love this game!

I’ve played this with a class of 20 students and with larger groups of about 40.

For my class of 20 students, I spread out 15 hula hoops around the gym with a bowling pin in each one (snowman). There’s one student per snowman. Each of these students protects their own snowman and attempts to knock over anyone else’s with a 6″ gator skin ball. The remaining five students are in a line along the side of the gym working on the steppers (steppers are not necessary, just added movement). At the same time, they are on the lookout for a “Snowman Down.” When a snowman falls, everybody yells “SNOWMAN DOWN,” and the first student in the stepper line replaces the student with the fallen snowman. That student heads to the back of the stepper line.

This is a fast-paced game I highly recommend.

Thank you for inspiring this game with your game called Pin Down.


This is a great game to play around the holidays.  For a class of 20, I evenly space 15 hoops around the gym floor.  One student stands inside each hoop (Elf power station). They are the elves. The other five students, who are not standing in the hoops are the trolls. The goal of the game is for the trolls to become and remain elves. Elves can only be in a hoop for up to five seconds at a time.  They must make eye contact with another elf and quickly switch hoops. The trolls try to jump into a vacated hoop to become an elf. With my older classes, I like to play this game without talking.  They have to solely rely on nonverbal communication.

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