Hot Potato

  1. Indoor Game
  2. Readiness Games
  • Large Group (10 and up)

  • Grades 1-2

  • Bouncy Balls

  • Less Than 10 minutes

Development Goal

To practice hand-eye coordination

Before You Start

  • Warm-up tossing the ball from player to player with safe throws (under-hand).
  • Have players form a circle or stand next to their desks
  • Review rules and boundaries.

Set Up

If playing in a classroom, push desks and chairs to make room to form a circle (if possible).

How to Play

  • Pass the ball around the circle or class without dropping the ball.
  • If someone drops it, they sit in the center (“hot potato soup” pot).
  • After the end of each round, increase the speed that the ball is tossed around the circle.


  • Play with other objects, such as a bean bag or frisbee to change the challenge.
  • Play a short song while the object is being passed. Whoever has the object at the end of the song goes into the center of the circle.
  • With younger players K to first grade, sit in a circle; start out first handing, then rolling a ball, then transition into tossing.
  • If you do not have music… Players sit in a circle and pass a ball in one direction. Players should pass the ball as quickly as possible with out throwing or dropping it. The whole group says the verse as the ball is passed. The player holding the ball when the verse ends must do 5 jumping jacks before returning to the game. Verse: “Pass the ball round and round. Pass is quickly or you’ll be found. If you’re the one to hold it last, you will owe 5 jumping jacks. You are it!”