Quick Hands PE Activity – Assessing Response and Direction

My name is Seth Lundquist and I teach PreK-5th grade physical education in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. Quick Hands is an excellent game to play at the beginning of the year or after a long break because it assesses my students’ ability to respond immediately and appropriately to directions given. It is also a great social distancing activity that can be played with many modifications and types of PE equipment.

PE activity



Set Up

Each student has an object in front of them with their bodies in ready position (Standing with hands on knees)


Activity Instructions

When I see that all students are in ready position with their object in front of them, I ask them, “Are you ready?!” They all respond, “Bring it on, Coach!!” I then call out a body part such as shoulders, knees, toes, head, etc. When I say a body part, they touch that body part with their hands. You can get as silly as you want. Sometimes I will also say, “hair, eyes, mouth, big toe, or tooth”. Sometimes I will say the body parts really fast or really slow or change the cadence in my voice.

When I say the word, “ball” or “grab”, students reach down as quickly as they can, grab the object, and hold it up.

Depending on the grade level and class, I will ask for a volunteer to come up front and be the leader. It is amazing how creative and tricky students try to get with their classmates. This game works for all grades at the elementary level.

activity for PE


Add a level: Students begin with their backs turned to the object. They must turn around and grab the object when the word “Ball” or Grab” is said.

One vs. One: Students are facing each other. The student who grabs the object first, wins. After a couple turns, students can rotate and face a different partner.

Indoors: Object can be placed on the desk and played individually or with a partner.

Muscular System/Skeletal System: If you are teaching about the muscular or skeletal system you can call out body parts like, “biceps, triceps, clavicle, or tibia”.

Seth Lundquist pe teacherAbout the Author

Seth Lundquist is currently an elementary physical education teacher at Bonella A. St. Ville Elementary in Harvey, LA. He is currently in his 5th year teaching physical education. Seth enjoys spending time with his family and exercising. He believes that it is important to model a healthy lifestyle so his students want to practice those healthy behaviors themselves. You can follow him on Twitter @StVille_PE or Instagram @stville_pe

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