Name/Title: Castle Ball

Purpose of Event: To practice working together as a team while playing both offense and defense. Works nicely with a Handball unit because it allows students to focus on passing, blocking, and strategies.

Suggested Grade Level: 9-12

Materials Needed:

Hula hoops
1 or 2 volleyball-sized soft foam balls.

Note: This activity works really well in small gymnasiums. If you have a lot of space available you can have many games going on at the same time, as long as you have enough hoops. In addition, regulation volleyballs are not appropriate for this activity.

Description of Idea

Castle Ball is like building a "house of cards" out of 4 to 6 hula hoops. This structure will stand on its own but will fall when a ball strikes any part of it. To build the castle teams place one hoop on the floor, four hoops form the sides, and one the top.

Depending on the space available have many games going on at the same time. It works best when teams are 3-on-3 and no more than 4-on-4.

The object of the activity is to try to work with classmates to knock down the castle of the other team, while protecting your own. One point is awarded each time a castle is knocked down, even if a player bumps into his\her own castle. Castles that are knocked down should be set up as quickly as possible so players can continue playing.


The game area is separated by a center line, which players cannot cross to retreive a ball (this center line is optional--you decide). It is also best to have a throwing line inside each teams area to make sure all balls are thrown from the same distance. Teams are not to throw at castles inside of that line. Players should be encouraged to try different throwing strategies, i.e; different angles, speeds, trajectories, bounced off the wall or the ceiling etc. They should also be encouraged (and even recognized with scoring rewards) to pass the ball to teammates to surprise the defenders or to make sure everyone gets to throw the ball. In defending the castle, players should be alert, on the balls of their feet, and cooperate wittheir teammates to form strategies that will best defend their "castles".

Variations:

After students have mastered the activity using just one ball, add another one to increase
the difficulty level.

Have them throw using only non-dominant hand to make it more difficult.

If you, the teacher, see excellent passing add a point or two to the overall score.

Teaching Suggestions:

Use a soft foam ball for this activity.
Make sure the throwing line is at a safe distance from the defenders of the castle.
Do not allow kids to throw the ball at other students.


Submitted by Louis Larouche who teaches at Victoria Park School in St-Lambert, Quebec, Canada Thanks for contributing to PE Central! Posted on PEC: 12/13/2019.
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