Hopscotch was such an important part of childhood when I was a kid that a hopscotch game was permanently painted on to the blacktop of our elementary school playground. Everyone not only knew how to play, they knew who was the best at it.
Youâ€™d spend hours on the weekends looking for just the right hopscotch stone â€“ one that was flat enough to land where you wanted without bouncing and light enough to be tossed with precision.Â It was an exact science.
Teaching your kids how to play hopscotch is a good way to spend a sunny afternoon and get them outside.
There are a variety of ways to draw the board. The one I remember is composed of a series of squares with numbers in them. Single squares would be interspersed with double squares, and marked from one to ten.
Our board went something like; 1, 2/3, 4, 5, 6/7, 8, 9/10, Home. The home space was where you turned around to come back.
You tossed the stone into the first square and, skipping the square with the stone in it, hopped, one foot in the single squares and straddling with one foot in each square when you came to the doubles.
In the home space you hop to change direction and come back, deftly picking up the stone as you pass it.
Stepping on a line, losing your balance, or missing a square means that your turn is over. If you have done the sequence successfully, then you toss your stone to the next square in the sequence and repeat until you have finished or been disqualified.
Although this game is best played with a group, there are many children who have spent countless hours playing it alone, as anyone who has been an only child can confirm.
photo credit: pauljennywilson