How to play Rainbow Run

Group Size: Any
Age Group: Pre K/K
Skills Practiced: Gross motor control, spatial awareness, memory, peripheral vision, creative thinking, and running
Development Goal(s): To improve memory through two approaches: 1) Color and pattern recognition 2) Directional and spatial awareness (through running)

Before You Start:

  • Hula hoops, as many as you want but at least 5 with each a different color
  • Rainbow Run requires a lot of running so be sure to stretch out before you start this game.

Set Up:

  • Set up hula hoops in random arrangement around playing area. Do not place hula hoops directly together

How to Play:

  • The students will form a line at a designated starting point
  • One person is chosen to be Simon. Simon is in charge of determining the pattern the runners will run by calling out colors in an order of their choosing. The colors Simon can call depends on how many colors you have (let’s assume we have the colors, red, yellow, orange, green, blue and purple)
  • We have six hula hoops, one of each color. For example, Simon can call “red, green, and blue!” and the runner would have to run to those color hoops in that order. So in the case of 6 hula hoops one of each color, that number can be anywhere from one to six.
  • Also, colors may be repeated. For example, Simon can call “yellow, green, blue, yellow” or “green, blue, green, red”. The length of the pattern can be changed at any point by the coach. This means you can start the game with a three color pattern, subsequently increasing it to five, etc.
  • After the runner completes the pattern, they become the new Simon, while the previous Simon joins the runner line.


  • Add a time limit for the kids to finish the pattern in
  • For older kids, you can add in multiple hoops of the same color, and they have to figure out the fastest way to complete a given pattern
  • Keep adding colors to the pattern and see how long a pattern the group can complete in the allotted time

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