My name is Lindsay Karp, I teach physical education and health at Bret Harte Elementary and A. Russell Knight Elementary in Cherry Hill, NJ.
Catapult is a fun, energizing game that focuses on multiple fitness components and creativity. I first saw this game on Twitter from another PE teacher who I could not find again, so just wanted to give a shout out if you are reading this, thank you! I modified this game to make my students more successful within their skill-set. I used this game during our “Health and Wellness” week while we discussed fitness components and nutrition.
- Split the gym with 10 cones down the half court line
- 14 pins set-up on each baseline
- 2 mats behind the cones on each side
- Gator Skin balls can be tossed on each side
— Lindsay K (@PeMrskarp) February 7, 2019
NOTE: I have large classes, so this can always be modified for smaller classes
Teams have two jobs – Catapults and Runners. Each team will have 6 catapults (students on the mat) and the rest of the team are Runners. The Runners’ job is to retrieve gator balls and give them to the Catapults – they cannot guard the pins. Once Catapults get a ball, they do a sit-up and then throw the ball to knock over the pother teams’ pins. Catapults switch every 2 minutes to allow for correct form and rest time. Once Catapults switch, they then become Runners. The first team to knock down all 14 pins is the winner.
I add different levels each round, so the above is Level 1.
Level 2: Played like level 1, but add:
- Catapults can throw and hit moving target shoulders and below, that Runner goes off to the side and performs 5 of an exercise of their choice (jumping jacks, push-ups, knee highs, lunges)
- If Runners catch the ball thrown from the Catapults, the Catapults goes to the side side and performs 5 of an exercise of their choice (jumping jacks, push-ups, knee highs, lunges)
Level 3: Played like level 1 & 2, but add:
- 3 guards for each team
- Guards have to stay in their zone (baseline to red tape, a few feet in front of the pins)
- Guards can use a gator ball to deflect the throw
Level 4: Played like level 1, 2, & 3, but add:
- Guards can throw to try and knock down the pins on the other side
Each level can be modified as needed and grades 1-5 can play this game!
My students LOVED this game! Once they understood the basics, we kept adding levels for challenge and differentiation. They got such a great workout the whole time! This is a new house favorite!
Other Teachers Who Tried “Catapult”
Coach Payne (@HomesteadPE) tried this activity with his students and created his own unique version. See his video below.
— Coach Payne (@HomesteadPE) February 14, 2019
About the Author:
Lindsay Karp is currently an elementary physical education teacher in Cherry Hill, NJ. She received her Bachelor of Science degree at the University of South Florida and is currently working on her Master’s degree in School Administration. She loves spending time with her family and friends and is always looking for new ideas for class! Follow her on Twitter @PeMrskarp