How to play Bandaid Tag

Do your students love tag? Teaching fun tag games with clear safety rules can make your playground more exciting and manageable to recess monitors. The Game of the Week is Bandaid Tag!

Group Size:  10+

Age Group:  Grades 1-5
Length of Activity:   Less than 10 minutes
Developmental Goal:  To develop eye-hand coordination and evasion skills.
Equipment:  None

Before You Start: ​

  • Demonstrate safe tagging:
    • Light touch, like a butterfly wings, on the shoulder, upper arm or upper back.
    • Unsafe tags: hard contact that might cause the person being tagged to fall.
  • Review what to do when you get tagged
  • Make sure players know where the hospital is and how to be fixed.

Set Up: 

Designate a clear playing area using cones or sidewalk chalk to mark clear boundaries. Designate a hospital outside the play area using visible boundaries.

How to Play: 

  • In this game, every player is it and can both tag others and be tagged.
  • If a player is tagged, that player must take one hand and put it directly on the place where they were tagged. The hand is a bandaid.
  • After being tagged once, players continue to run around, avoid being tagged and attempt to tag others, but they must keep their bandaid on and therefore only has one free hand.
  • If a player is tagged again, they must take the other hand and place it on the second spot where tagged. The player can still continue to run around with both bandaid on.
  • If any player is tagged a third time, they have to go to the hospital and do five jumping jacks (or another per-determined action) to get back in.  


  • Players can be treated at the hospital by counting to 20 and then return to the game without any bandaids.
  • Players can go to the hospital at any time to remove any bandaids. They do not have to wait until they are tagged the second or third time.
  • Allow players to heal themselves by stepping anywhere outside the boundaries to do the jumping jacks or other action.
  • Vary the speed of the game by having all player use different footwork, such as move like you are walking through glue, like you are creating static electricity, or like you are a bunny.

Love implementing Game of the Week? Playworks offers professional development programs that will teach your staff to use recess and playtime to improve health and support learning. Curious to learn more? Submit the Training Assessment form and a local Playworks representative will respond directly.


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