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Have fun together with people games.

As their name suggests, you don’t need special equipment to play people games – just you and the time and a space to enjoy being together with your child.

A parent makes hand gestures that are being copied by their child.

Ideas for people games

There are lots of well-known people games and families often make up their own games.

Here are some ideas:

  • Traditional Māori games such as tī rākau (stick game), mahi whai (string game), poi, and haka.
  • Peekaboo, using a soft blanket or hands.
  • Finger-play games like This little piggy, Round and round the garden, and Where is Thumbkin?
  • Games like Simon says, Hide and seek, and I spy.
  • Chase, tag, or running around a circuit.
  • Make up a story by taking turns to add the next sentence.

When children are included in people games they can learn to:

  • take a turn
  • wait for you to take a turn
  • focus their attention and copy you
  • make choices
  • ask to start a game, or for it to continue
  • practice using new body actions, sounds, and words to communicate.

Te reo Māori words and phrases for people games

Kei whea koe? Where are you?

Kei konei ahau Here I am

E oma Run

E peke Jump

Titiro Look