3-Ball Kick Baseball

Activity Overview

Participants learn about and practise sending an object with their feet to score a run. Participants also learn about and practise fielding an object to prevent the opponent from scoring runs.

  • Primary (Ages 6-9)
  • Junior (Ages 10-12)

Facility

  • Gymnasium
  • Outdoors

Materials and Equipment

  • 1 bucket per game
  • 3 balls (e.g., soccer, beach ball, soft-skinned ball) per game
  • 4 bases per game

Safety

Inspect the activity area and eliminate potential hazards. Check that the activity surface provides safe traction. Clearly outline the boundaries for the activity and set a safe distance from walls and obstacles. Remind students to be cautious when moving and to be aware of the personal space of others.

Activity Information

Activity Set-up

  • Divide participants into small groups (e.g., four to six) and have multiple games going on at the same time.
  • Have participants set up the bases similar to baseball and place three balls at the home plate beside a bucket.
  • Have one group start “at bat” and the other group start in the field. The group “at bat” should create a batting order that they maintain for the entire game.

Activity Instructions

  • The first participant at bat kicks each of the three balls into the field, one at a time, and then runs the bases. The kicker tries to kick the ball into open space so the fielders do not catch the ball. Fielders attempt to catch and/or retrieve the balls as soon as the first ball has been kicked, while being aware of the other balls being kicked.
  • Fielders collect all the balls and place them in the bucket beside home plate. Fielders work together to run and hand off (not throw) the balls to each other to get the balls to the bucket.
  • Participants must be on a base when all balls are placed in the bucket. Once on a base, participants are not required to run to the next base. They can decide to stay on the base if they do not think they can make it to the next base before all the balls are placed in the bucket. If they are between bases when balls are all returned to the bucket, they return to the previous base. More than one participant is allowed on a base at a time.
  • Runs are scored each time a participant reaches home base safely.
  • The entire group takes a turn at bat before the groups switch places.
  • The leader asks open-ended questions to help participants refine their movement strategies and tactical solutions during the activity.

Adaptations

To maximize the challenge and the fun, participants could identify their own ways to increase or decrease the challenge.

To decrease the challenge, participants could:

  • Decrease the distance between the bases.
  • Strike the ball using their hand or arm.
  • Return the ball back to the bucket by throwing when fielding.

To increase the challenge, participants could:

  • Increase the distance between the bases.
  • Use an implement to send the ball (e.g., hockey stick, tennis racquet).
  • Catch the ball using an implement (e.g., an upside down pylon, bucket) when fielding.
  • Change the ball for a smaller object (e.g., tennis ball, wiffle ball).
  • Add additional rules (e.g., limiting the number of steps when holding a ball, taking a ball that was caught before it bounces out of play).

Pause for Learning

Throughout the activity, consider highlighting the following skills, concepts, and strategies to help participants learn how to send and receive a ball. Note that this is not an exhaustive list, and further learning opportunities may arise during the task.

Movement Skills and Concepts

  • Manipulation skills and effort awareness: Applying a controlled force to send an object into a designated area; applying manipulation skills to successfully receive/field the ball (e.g., keeping your eyes on the incoming object and moving your body into the path of the incoming object; making a target with your hands to receive the object—thumbs in for objects above the waist, thumbs out for objects below the waist, and receiving the object by cushioning it into the body)

Movement Strategies

  • Applying appropriate skills to be proficient at kicking an object to score runs and catching and passing an object to stop runs

Living Skills

Interpersonal Skills

  • Working collaboratively as a group to cover the playing area when fielding the ball

Critical & Creative Thinking Skills

  • Applying manipulation skills and strategies to decide how and where to send the ball into a designated space to score runs
  • Applying manipulation skills and strategies to be in the optimal position to field the ball and return it back to the bucket