Debbie Glade reviews a book that reminds her of her own childhood, way, way back when.

You know you’re dating yourself when you say, “When I was your age, we did not have electronic toys. We went outside and made up games, playing and running around all day long.” Frankly, I thought those days were over until I read Go Out an Play: Favorite Outdoor Games from KaBOOM ($11.95, Candlewick Press, Ages 5 and up). KaBOOM (nonprofit) was created by Darell Hammond with the mission to keep children active and playing, while using their imaginations. What a stellar idea that was and what a big hit KaBoom has been!

Go Out and Play is simple, yet delightful. Page after page, you will find indoor and outdoor tag, hide and seek, ball, team, sidewalk, circle, race and other games to keep your little ones active and busy all day, just like you did when you were a kid. Remember Marco Polo, Mother May I?, Egg and Spoon Race and Red Rover? There are plenty of games like these in the book, plus some new ones your kids will want to try. There’s an intro from Darrell Hammond as well as information in the back of the book about getting and keeping kids active with a call to action.

In this age of sedentary living, computers, iPads and video games, any book, toy or product that encourages kids to get up, get out and play is a winner. There’s nothing like seeing children engaged in old-fashioned good fun, burning up energy and staying fit while having a ball. And perhaps just as wonderful is the fact that these activities don’t cost a dime!

Reading this book reminded me of a sidewalk game with chalk and a ball my older sister and I played for years called Rolly Polly. I remember winning much more often that she did, but she insists I’ve got that all wrong.

Now I’m in the mood for playing Follow the Leader. I’m the leader. Are you in?

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