Unlocking the Secrets of Hopscotch: Rules, History, and Fun for Kids


Playing a game of Hopscotch, and cooling off with Butterscotch Ice Cream?
Sounds like the perfect recipe for bored kids, this upcoming holiday season!

The outdoor game of Hopscotch is a traditional game that has been played for years. During times when children didn’t need to be ‘connected’, to form a connection.

In case you’re one of those children who grew up not playing Hopscotch, you can rest assured that your search for all things Hopscotch ends right here! In this article you will find information pertaining to not only the essential Hopscotch Game Rules every aspiring Hopscotch player must learn, but also a glimpse into Hopscotch Game history.

Looking to return to your roots, and get your children to play Hopscotch? Let’s begin, by tracing the very ‘roots’ of this game, in a quest to unlock its secrets.

Hopscotch: The History

The classic game of Hopscotch goes back a long way. In fact, its origins can be traced as early as the ancient Roman Empire. A look back at this period, reveals Hopscotch courts that were more than 100 feet long.

Note: During these times, the courts were actually used for military training exercises!

It was none other than ‘children’, who brought the game of Hopscotch as we know it today, to the forefront. Carefully observing the Roman soldiers, the kids in Rome came up with their own version of this ‘military game.’ They devised unique rules for the game, which was now played on smaller courts that were drawn by them.
And thus, the game of Hopscotch was born!

Cool Fact: Ever wonder why the word ‘London’ is written on the top of some Hopscotch courts? It’s because of the 400-mile Roman Road, the Great North Road, that was used by the Roman Military. Now, that’s what we call ‘paying tribute to one’s roots!’

Hopscotch Game: What it is?

In the times when some parents were growing up, playing ‘Super Mario Bros’ was probably more common than indulging in a game of Hopscotch. However, we all knew the game existed back then. It went by many names, too. While some preferred the traditional ‘Hopscotch’, some called it ‘Laylay’ and yet others, ‘Kunte Belle.’

What is the Hopscotch Game, in essence? Let’s take a look!

The game of Hopscotch essentially necessitates a player throwing a small object into a ‘grid’ of squares that have been numbered on the ground. The player must then hop through said spaces, to recover the object.

Cool Fact: The beauty of playing this game lies in the fact that one can play it with a group of people, or even alone!

Are you ready to unravel those Hopscotch Game Rules? We have them all covered, in the following section.

Hopscotch Game for Preschoolers: How to play the Hopscotch Game

Looking for how to play the Hopscotch Game? You can learn a thing or two here, about those Hopscotch Game Rules. At the end of reading it, you will understand all there is to know about the Hopscotch Game for Preschoolers.

  • Step 1: Draw the Hopscotch Court. You can do this on concrete, using chalk. Traditionally speaking, this means you need to draw 10 squares.

Tip: If you wish to make it easier for your little preschooler, begin with 8 squares.

  • Step 2: Tossing the object. This is the time the object must be thrown into the grid. You can make use of a rock for this. Toss it into a square. It could be the first, or even the second. This object that you throw into the grid, is also called a ‘marker’.
  • Step 3: One player goes first. That’s the quintessential rule of Hopscotch. Only one player at a time.
  • Step 4: The player must ‘hop’ their way from one square to the other on foot. If they have tossed their rock into the second square then they must start from the first square, as it is the closest empty square. Then they must hop on one leg over square 2, and continue hopping onto each subsequent square, until they have reached the end of the court.
  • Step 5: Landing on Both Feet. A classic hopscotch court usually has two pairs of squares. These are generally the 4th and 5th squares, and the 7th and 8th. What the player must do when they reach these, is land on both their feet in the respective ‘couple squares’.
  • Step 6: Once they have reached the end, the player must turn around. They can use a single foot here if it is only one square, or both their feet in case of two squares. Then, their objective is making their way back to the starting point.
  • Step 7: When they have reached back to square 2, where their rock lies, they must retrieve it. The catch here, lies in the fact that they must do so without stepping into the square.
  • Step 8: Finishing up! After they have their prized ‘rock’ with them, the player must finish their mission, by returning to the ‘Start’ position.
  • Step 9: The next player goes. It’s time to hand the ‘Rock’ to another player.

Hopscotch Rules: The Essentials

Now that you have a brief idea of how to play Hopscotch, here are some rules you cannot ignore.

  • Stay within the grid at all times. If you jump outside the lines or even miss a square altogether, you lose your turn. Unfortunately, the same goes if you fall.
  • Toss the marker correctly. If you toss it ‘outside the lines’, you skip your turn.
  • Don’t step on any line. They say, ‘Some lines are not meant to be crossed.’ Here, the lines are not meant to be ‘tread upon’!

At EuroKids, we are all for your kids playing the game of Hopscotch. Not only will it help drive them away from their digital devices, it will go a long way in helping them master Body Control, too. If that’s not enough reason, see how much fun they have while playing it!