Indoor recess... It's as dreaded by teachers as it is students. They want to get out and play. We desperately need them to get the wiggles out so they can focus on learning. With the right indoor recess activities, you can have your students looking forward to indoor recess days instead of dreading them. Lucky for us, there are tons of indoor games and activities you can do right inside your classroom that will help your students let off some steam and be ready to learn again.
Big kids have totally different expectations of recess, and I've found that I have to have lots of ideas on hand and be ready to be flexible depending on their moods. This post from my blog, Chalk & Apples, shares some of my 4th grade students' favorite indoor recess games and activities. Most games require either no materials or materials usually on hand in any classroom.
Card GamesIf you teach math, chances are, you have decks of playing cards in your classroom. My students love playing math card games during centers, but all of those games are academmic. I think maybe this is why they get so excited when I tell them we can play "regular card games" for indoor recess. Here are instructions for some of our favorites: Trash, Egyptian War, Sequence, War, Crazy Eights
I absolutely love this list of old recess games. Fair warning - some of them are outdoor or gym-only games, but there are tons of indoor recess choices too!
This website is all about getting kids active! There are tons of recess ideas, both indoor and outside. My favorite thing about this site is that it's all about getting kids moving, so all of the indoor recess ideas will still wear your students out! (Can I get an amen?!)
If you're looking for something that can be done school-wide, Sara from The Colorful Apple has a great idea. Her school runs an indoor recess program that allows students to choose special activities on indoor recess days, such as legos, yoga, art, etc. It's almost like a "recess club" that students can choose to join if there's an activity they are interested in.
This site has a ton of fun games for older students to play. They make great icebreakers for back to school or indoor recess games.
What are your favorite indoor recess activities? If you can add to my list, leave a comment! Follow me on my blog, Instagram, or Pinterest for more fun ideas for your classroom!