I’m Matt Eichel and I teach K-8 Phys. Ed. At St. Ignatius School in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. We have been working on our Striking with a Long Implement skills (S1.E25), starting with baseball skills for Grades 2-5. I wanted to play a game that involved all students throughout the entirety of the game, something regular baseball does not do for the most part. So, I saw a game known as Baseball Tag from a few other P.E. teachers and decided to give it a try.
- Tees or cones for hitting
- 6-10 foam baseball bats (depends on gym & class size)
- 6-10 small dodgeballs (also depends on gym & class size)
- 6-10 hula hoops
- 6-10 mats (just to separate the “batting cages”)
Create 6 “batting cages” using mats to separate each batting cage with a tee or cone to hit off of. Next, set up a hula hoop opposite each batting cage where the fielders will be waiting. In each group, I have them number themselves 1,2,3,4,5, etc. so they know the order of who will be the next batter.
Playing Baseball Tag today in #PhysEd. Working on Striking w/ LHI (S1.E25.5) and Personal Responsibility and Safety during gameplay (S1.E4.1-2.5, S1.E6.5) – Batter hits, then tries to tag fielders as many times as they can; Fielders must get ball & throw to person in hoop pic.twitter.com/ZaozXB99eP
— Matt Eichel (@PEbyMrE) December 6, 2019
Each batter will hit the ball and then run towards the fielders, trying to tag each fielder. Each time they tag a fielder, they earn one point. They must tag each fielder before re-tagging a fielder.
The fielders must get the ball and get it back to another fielder who will stand inside the hula hoop. If a fielder has the ball, they may only pivot, therefore, they must throw to another fielder to get it back to the hula hoop as quickly as they can.
Once the fielders successfully get it to the fielder inside the hula hoop, they yell “STOP!” and the batter is done and remembers their score for their next turn.
The next batter gets the ball and bat and begins their turn.
My Grade 3’s and 4’s loved it as an alternative to actual ‘indoor baseball’. I used it after a dud of a class of ‘indoor’ baseball’ with my Grade 5’s and they did a great job as they got in more practice being a fielder than they would have if they were playing a ‘real’ baseball game.
I let my Grade 5’s have the option of having someone pitch it to them or they throw it up and hit the ball, following S1.E25.5a as the GLO for that specific part of the skill we are practicing.
I have let the fielders not have to pivot if they get the ball, which makes it more challenging to get lots of points for the batter.
About the Author:
Matt Eichel is in his sixth year of teaching Phys. Ed., his first at St. Ignatius School in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. He coaches volleyball, basketball, badminton, track and field, and soccer. Matt’s main goal is to give his students the knowledge and the tools to be physical active for their entire life. He is a moderator for the weekly Phys. Ed. chat #ESPEChat. He earned his Bachelor of Physical Education from the University of Manitoba. You can follow him at @PEbyMrE