Colorful Buckets Activity – Kicking Unit for PE

By Erik Myer, Elementary PE Teacher

colorful bucket PE activity

The other day I was looking for a different type of kicking activity to do with my students.  I decided to take a look at Coach Pirillo’s YouTube channel for inspiration. I came across a game called Colorful Pins. What was unique about this game is that he had his students kicking a deck ring across the floor rather than a ball. I decided I wanted to try this game out with my students. 

Since I didn’t have three foot tall inflatable pins that Ben was using with his classes, I had to modify the activity with the equipment I had on hand. The pins that Ben were using were the six colors of a rainbow. There were also cards of similar color that would be collected if you hit a pin with the deck ring. My idea was to use my rainbow colored buckets. They are much smaller and lighter than the pins. I added 8-10 bean bags to each bucket to weigh them down so they would not move much or get knocked over.

I then went to Coach Pirillo’s website to download the free cards he made available. After downloading the set of cards, I laminated them so they would hold up over time.

pe activity materials

Set Up & How to Play


I used eighteen colored buckets (three rainbows) and set them up across the middle of my gym floor. Poly spots were set up along the sidelines for the students to use as a home base to kick from. I had my students work with a partner, and the goal was to collect as many rainbows as they could.

Fill each bucket with the cards that are the same color as the bucket. I had 360 cards total in the buckets and divided them evenly by sides. This would allow for easy access for the students to retrieve them.

The game began with the first student kicking the deck ring across the floor to the center of the room. If the deck ring hits a bucket, they would earn a card that was the same color as the bucket. Hit a yellow bucket and retrieve a yellow card. The only way to get two cards would be if they hit a red bucket and it ricocheted off and hit say a blue bucket. The student would then bring the card and the deck ring back to their home base (poly spot) and their partner would then take their turn. If a kick resulted in not hitting a bucket, the deck ring was simply retrieved and brought back and the students’ turn was over.

colorful PE activity

Modification for Grades 3-5

After playing the first day, I realized the kicking distance was perfect for my K-2 students, but too easy for my 3-5 students. I modified the game by moving all the buckets to the far side of the gym, and had the students kicking from the center of the room. It was approximately twenty feet away.

Overall, I thought the game was a success. The students enjoyed the new challenge of kicking the deck ring and making some rainbows! Below is the YouTube video for Coach Pirillo’s Colorful Pins activity.

About the Author: Erik Myer is an elementary PE teacher at Warnsdorfer Elementary School in East Brunswick, NJ. He’s been teaching PE for 18 years. He also recently won the NJAHPERD Elementary Teacher of the Year Award for 2018.

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2 thoughts on “Colorful Buckets Activity – Kicking Unit for PE

  1. This is a cool idea, but how did students achieve kicking to every color? After they completed a kick for each partner, did they move down the line to the next color?

  2. Creative idea – thanks for sharing! I love that you have a modification for older grades included as well!

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