You've got a bunch of rowdy kids running around your home, perhaps waiting for parents to pick them up after a play date. Whatever the case, you need something for these rambunctious kids with short attention spans to do in the meantime. Engage the kids in short group activities that will keep them busy, entertained and out of mischief.
Easy Group Art
Have the kids make a friendship hand print collage. The kids can take turns tracing each others' hands on construction paper in any color. Place a large sheet of paper down on the dining table and let the kids paste the hands to the paper, using non-toxic glue. Have the kids write their name on their hands. Or have the kids make a story picture. For this activity, the kids take turns drawing something on the poster board to add to the story. The first child, who starts off with "once up on a time," can draw a person, trees, a house or anything that tells his story. After 30 seconds, another child grabs a marker and starts drawing while continuing the story. The last child must bring a conclusion to the story.
For a quick trivia game, give each child a piece of paper. They have one minute to come up with a list of items based on the subject you give them. It could be things like U.S. presidents, states, types of movies or TV shows. The child who has the most valid items on their list without repeats wins. You can also play a "first to five" trivia game where you give the kids math questions. They can use a piece of paper and run up to you with the answer. As soon as someone gets it correct move on to the next question. The first person to five points wins.
Quick Circle Games
For a short, active circle game, play hot potato questions. Set a timer and give the kids an object to represent the potato. In order to be able to pass it, each child must be able to answer a question correctly, related to school or entertainment. Whoever is holding the potato when the time runs out is out of the game.
Short Team Games
For another quick game, have the kids play octopus. Assign three kids to be octopuses. The other kids must run through their territory and avoid being tagged. Anyone is who tagged each time they run through becomes a baby octopus and is frozen on the spot. However they can use their arms to reach out and try to tag other kids. The last person untagged is the winner.