Dodge Ball Games for Elementary PE Classes

Classic games such as dodge ball can be saviors when a physical educator is planning his class activities. Dodge ball can be played using a limited amount of equipment and space. Unfortunately, it can also get boring for the pupils playing it over and over again. If you adjust the rules of dodge ball, you can overcome the boredom and create new games for your pupils to play.

  1. Cutthroat

    • Cutthroat dodge ball is sometimes known as scramble. In this game, only one player is "It." His goal is to eliminate all of the other players in the game by hitting them with the ball. The playing area is defined by the physical education teacher, and anyone who goes out of that area is declared to be eliminated. The only defense the other players have is dodging the ball or catching it. If a player catches the ball, he becomes "It." One variation allows for everyone who was eliminated to come back into the game at that point. That can result in a very long game, though. The shorter variation allows only the non-eliminated players to remain in the game. This means if only two people are left and one player catches the ball, he is the winner.


    • Murderball is played in a gymnasium that has basketball nets, but it's played using volleyballs. The class is divided into two teams. Each team has its own half of the court, and the other team may not cross that line. Teams try to eliminate members of the other team by hitting them with volleyballs thrown from their own side of the center line. The game can be played with two to four balls. The twist in this game is that if a member of one team shoots a basket into the basketball net on the other team's side, all of the members of the shooter's team who were eliminated enter the game again.

    King's Court

    • King's court is played between two teams. Each team must each remain on its own side of a center dividing line in the gymnasium. The goal is to eliminate the other team's king. The twist is that each king's identity is known only to his teammates and the teacher. The teacher announces when a king has been eliminated, indicating the other team has won. A player is eliminated if he is hit by the ball, but is safe if he catches it. The thrower is not eliminated if another player catches the ball. Some teams try to protect their king with other players surrounding him to take the hits. Other teams try to bluff, leaving their king unprotected but hoping the other team won't recognize that he's the king.


    • Gagaball is a variation of dodge ball that is sometimes know as beach dodge ball. This is because it's played with a beach ball instead of a harder ball. A 20-by-20-foot court is used, with each team having half of the court. Each player can use only one hand in gagaball; the other hand must remain behind his back. Players are eliminated when hit below the waist by the beach ball. If you are hit above the waist, you remain in the game. You are also eliminated if you are the last person to touch the ball before it lands on your team's side of the court. The last team with players remaining is the winner.

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  • Photo Credit artist image by Harald Soehngen from

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