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Name of Activity:

Shark Attack Jumping and Landing

Purpose of Activity:

To help students develop the different jumping patterns (hopping; jumping using 2 feet take-offs and landings; leaping; 1-to-2 foot jumps; 2-to-1 foot jumps)

Suggested Grade Level:


Materials Needed:

Hoops, and poly spots (the more the better), carpet squares for those teachers who have carpeted activity areas.

Description of Idea

After students have practiced the different kinds of jumps (i.e. hopping; 2-ft. jumping; leaping; 1-to-2 foot jumps; 2-to-1 foot jumps), let students know they will be using their jumps to play a game called "Shark Attack". Put out all the hoops and poly spots in scattered manner throughout the activity area, making sure they are close enough so students can move from one spot to another, yet far enough that they cannot just walk from spot to spot. If needed, only use half of your activity area to keep the objects close enough.

Have students line up on one end of the gym beside each other. Have them number off from 1 to 4. When you call all 1's, for example, those students must use their jumping patterns to jump from spot to spot without touching the floor (where the sharks are!). Challenge them to try to make it to the other end of the river without falling into the river and getting bitten by the shark even once! (If they do, they just keep going.)

Once the 1's have begun and there is enough space, allow the number 2's to go...3's, 4's, etc. (if space and equipment permits, have as many students as possible cross the river). Once students make it to the other end, they once again line up and wait for the signal to return. Ask how many students made it through without getting bitten by the shark, and challenge them to go slowly enough to correctly use their different kinds of jumps.


  • If students do well with this have half of the class go to the other side, number off and have them start to go across the shark infested waters going the opposite way. Make sure to tell them to look up before they jump into a hoop. Another person crossing the river may be getting ready to jump into their hoop as well.
  • This can be used as an assessment of one's gross motor skill. Allow students to jump only using 2 foot jumps, for example, and write down those students who you feel need additional practice on the skill.
  • A variation of the activity could be that they are only allowed
    to hop in the red hoops or the blue ones; leap to the yellow ones; etc.

Submitted by Robert Parker who teaches at Ramapo Ridge Middle School in Mahwah, NJ. Thanks for contributing to PE Central! Posted on PEC: 5/12/2016.
Viewed 268981 times since 8/24/2001.

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Shark Attack Jumping and Landing

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Previous Comments:

Stephen Smar

Thanks Robert! This is a great introduction to jumping, hopping and leaping. I used this with my K-2. I also was able to integrate some math into the lesson by limiting the amount of moves the students were allowed to make to get across the area.

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