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6 Games to Play With a Ball

Play Footsie

Grab a big plastic ball, and have everyone lie down on the floor with their feet up. Hold the ball with your feet, and try to work together to throw and catch it.

Clean It Up

To keep your older toddler or preschooler busy while you're doing stuff nearby, give her a beach ball and washable markers. Let her decorate it and then "give it a bath" and wash the marker off.

Kickerama

Try this twist on classic kickball: After the pitcher rolls the ball, he yells either "Hop!" "Skip!" or "Jump!" The kicker then has to follow his direction as she makes her way to first base. But before the pitcher can run after the ball, he has to quack like a duck three times.

Toss It

Pair up, with each pair holding a bath towel between them. Try to toss and catch a lightweight ball from towel to towel. (If you're indoors, use a beach ball to avoid breaking lamps!) Count how many times you can toss it before it hits the ground.

Virtual Orbs

You can find lots of cool ball-related games on Miniclip.com, a free site. Click on the "Kid Games" section. Three faves: Monkey Kick Off (very simpleā€”an older toddler can play), Table Tennis, and Bunch (you might just get addicted to that one!).

It's Supernatural

Teach your child this trick to impress her friends and family: Tell everyone you've got magical powers in your fingertips. Put a Ping-Pong ball in front of you on a table or counter, and make a big show of wiggling your fingers over it. Without touching it, it will magically start rolling away from you. The secret? While everyone's distracted by your wildly wiggling fingers, quietly and gently blow on the ball, without moving your lips.

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