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NAME OF ACTIVITY: Estes' Swiss Challenge

GRADE LEVEL: 3-12 But more suitable for 6-12

EQUIPMENT: 1 soft throwable (Beanbag) per group, 1 bounceable ball per player.

HIGHLIGHTS:  Teamwork, underhand toss, eye-hand coordination.

INSTRUCTIONS:  I divide my class into groups of 5-7.  Each player is given a bouncy ball (tennis ball, racquetball, etc.).  I then have each player number 1 through 5-7, with no player beside their consecutive number.  
     The game starts with player number 1 doing the following: Player 1 tosses his tennis ball into the air.  While the tennis ball is in the air, he/she will toss the beanbag (with an arc) to player two while calling "Two".  Player 1 must then catch his/her tennis ball before it hits the ground.  Now, Player two must toss his/her tennis ball in the air, then catch the bean bag, then toss it to player 3 (on an arc) while calling "3", and finally catch his/her tennis ball before it hits the ground.  This continues in numerical order as many times through the group as possible.
     So in short, the idea is to catch the beanbag and send it to the next person while your tennis ball is in the air, then catch your tennis ball before it hits the ground.  Therefore, you should never have the bean bag and your tennis ball at the same time, and neither items are supposed to touch the ground.

HELPFUL HINTS: For my students (elementary) I allow the students to catch their tennis ball after it bounces once.  With my lower levels, I allow it to bounce more than once.  I have not had much success with my younger students, so I plan to try it with balloons in place of the tennis ball.  So, I feel that this very challenging game can be modified by allowing the tennis balls to bounce from 1 to a number of times, or by replacing the tennis balls with balloons or other slow falling object.   For lower grades, I would eliminate the individual item all together.


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