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Parachute One Play of the group activities children can benefit from is the game of parachutes.

Benefits of Parachute Play
Including objects with the parachute allows for imagination. Participants can learn about the dynamics of synchrony and asynchrony, how resonating basically works, and promotes social interaction and good communication to achieve a common goal (for example bouncing the ball as high as possible requires absolute coordination). This type of game is good practice for goal orientated group sports, where equipment’s are shared. This game is encouraged to be repeated several times to allow students to familiarize themselves with the types of play and the objects and movement involved so team leaders can be chosen. Taking turns being team leaders reinforces sharing, as well as allow students to learn perception and how to maximize their resources. Other children can benefit by seeing a fellow classmate set examples, and learn to assimilate some of the methods into their own when they have a chance to become team leader.

Parachute Games and Activities

This game can be an add on to another game, with participants that can number from as little as 6 to as many as 40. Children who play this game have demonstrated improved teamwork and cooperation, as well as physical training like strength, agility and improved coordination. This is facilitated by the fact that the equipment cannot be operated by one child, and direct instructions from the teacher (lifting the parachute at the same time when there is a ball in the middle) allows children witness the outcome of co-operation (the ball rises in the air to a high height). With proper instruction, there are a diverse amount of games which can entertain the class; the game can last from as little as 10 minutes to as long as an hour. The length of the game is in direct proportion to the amount of exercise children benefit from the game; working their hips, arms, and upper back muscles, even legs if running is involved.

A number of games can be generated using various props: these include popcorn, ball roll, making waves, merry go round, and poison snakes. With each activity it helps to promote physical, social and cognitive skills. Here are a few games that are listed below.

Popcorn: First place a number of beanbags, small or large balls, or any other objects that would look like popcorns. Hold onto the edge of the parachute. Put your arms to your waist and shake to make them pop up like "popcorn".

Parachute Play Safety
Safety precautions and preparation must be carried out for this activity. They include bringing the parachute, objects (bean bags, beach ball, volley ball, tennis ball etc), checking for obstructions on the floor to minimize accidents and ensure a large area is available. The instructor needs to keep in mind that the game can become exhausted, or the game can get out of hand and become too wild. In these situations,

Ball Roll: place balls onto the parachute. The children will then have to move the chute to direct the balls into the hole in the middle, or prevent the balls from dropping into the hole.

Making waves: Children make waves using small, medium, or large movements. For added excitement, movements can be matched with a story, where your voice is used to emphasize instructions at various

Bibliography Abraham, Cathay. "Benefits of Parachute Play." Child Care Lounge - Training, Resources and Networking. 2005. Web. 12 Feb. 2012. <>. Logan, Kit. "Parachute Games." Home Page. 27 Aug. 2009. Web. 12 Feb. 2012. <>. Images © 2011 KidsSoup, Inc [accessed 12 feb 2012] Copyright © 2006 Shaler Area School District. [accessed 12 feb 2012] 2012]

by Deborah J. Stewart on May 23, 2010. [accessed 12 feb