Parachute Activities

Sharks and Minnows

Have students sit down around the parachute and put their legs straight out in front of them and under the chute. Choose two or three students to act as lifeguards. Lifeguards walk around the outside of the parachute looking for people to save. Pick a shark or two to start under the parachute. Sharks job is to carefully pull students ankles to pull them under the parachute. When a student is being pulled under they are supposed to put their hands in the air and yell for help. Lifeguards are looking for this distress call and can run over and pull them out from under the chute. If the lifeguard grabs a hold of a student the shark must let go. If a student is pulled under the chute then they become a shark. When the parachute loses it's roundness because so many students have turned into sharks start a new round.

Mountain Climbers

Have students practice making a mushroom/mountain by bring the chute above their heads and down to their feet holding it close to the ground to keep the air inside. Once they are good at keeping the air in, place mats under the chute. Make a mountain with the class and call out one color. If a student is holding that color of the parachute they get to slowly and carefully climb to the top of the mountain. I recommend to students to crawl or walk very slowly. We also talk about how air will not hold us up when we jump on or dive onto the chute. We also talk about how neighbors can hold down each others part of the parachute when they are climbing to the top.

Pop Corn

This is a fan favorite for students of all ages. Pour out a large bag of soft balls onto the top of the parachute. Ask students to shake as hard as they can to fling the balls high into the air. When they struggle to get it very high ask them to work together, lifting at the same time and dropping the chute at the same time. This should allow the chute to fling the balls high into the air. My students love to hit the ceiling in the gym as well as take it outside to fling the balls high into the air. When the popcorn leaves the chute leave it on the ground until all the balls are gone. Choose one color of the chute to pick up the balls.

Headhunter's Cave

This is a favorite of the little ones. Ask students to lift up the parachute all together and bring it down to the ground. Then carefully lay down on their stomachs and stick only their heads under the chute.