Popcorn!

Post by post, I seem to be writing a guide called 101 Fun Yoga Games to Play with Pom Poms.

Idea #72: Pom Pom Popcorn Scramble! This is a great energy-dispersing, good-feeling-generating physical challenge for all ages.

Here’s what you need:

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1 pot, preferably with a lid

A whole bunch of pom poms

Popcorn by the Barenaked Ladies (silly name, yes, and this song is from their excellent, quirky children’s album Lunchtime) cued up on the sound system.

Here’s how we play:

•  Fill a pan with popcorn pom poms.

•  Remind the kids about any rules during the game.

I usually have three rules:

1) Once the music starts, sit as still as possible in easy pose until you hear the singer say the word POP three times. Then get up and get ready to move!

2) Each time we play, we have one fun rule about retrieving popcorn, such as: only one or two kernels at a time; you have to hop or skip or tiptoe to the pom poms and crawl back to the pot; you have to balance pom poms on your head to bring them back to the pot; you can only retrieve pom poms with your toes, etc.

3) When the music stops, everyone returns to their mats and sits in easy pose.

•  Start the music! Hold the pot out over a pretend stove, and dramatically act out turning up the heat. When the singer starts to say POP, remove the lid, and throw the “popcorn” all over the room!!! (Little kids especially love this part – a grown-up, making a big mess and throwing stuff? Awesome!) Kids retrieve all the popcorn, according to whatever “rule” has been imposed.

•  Do it again! This is one of those games that always ends in “Do it again!”  And, like the Water Balloon game, it leaves you with happy, laughing kids who have just expended some silly energy and who end the game in easy pose, breathing deeply and ready to transition into the next activity.