Overhand throwing is a skill that is used in many games and sports such as baseball, softball, football, water polo, team handball, cricket, and the javelin throw in track and field. Some games and sports require you to throw for distance; some require you to throw for accuracy. Some games require you to throw to people and other games require you to throw at throwing goals or targets. Dice Bonk is an activity that was created to allow my students to practice overhand throwing. The original game is a spin-off of the game of Polish Frisbee.
When teaching physical education, the ability to improvise is a crucial skill to possess due to the lack of PE equipment available at times. Instead of using whiffle balls, we placed dice on top of a piece of PVC pipe, which was inserted into a cone. Instead of using Frisbees, we used gator skin balls to work toward meeting the grade level outcomes for overhand throwing. The name “Dice Bonk” stemmed from a lawn game that I saw featured in a Gopher Sport catalog called GamePlay DiscBonk Set.
The unique thing about Dice Bonk is that you have to have skill to be able to score, but there’s also a healthy amount of luck involved (based on what number the dice lands on). This “luck element” really makes for a fun game where you don’t always dominate just because you’re good at the skill.
On April 27, 2017, Dice Bonk made its Twitter debut on Twitter. See the tweet below. The game became very popular among other physical educators. From this single tweet grew tons of ways to modify Dice Bonk and different ways to play while practicing different sports or skills. Check out how to play!
Position students along two sidelines of the playing area. Each student has an opponent on the opposite sideline. Each student has a poly spot in their designated color. Place cones with a piece of PVC pipe (optional) and a die balanced on top down the middle of the playing area (1 cone per 2 students). Place a scorecard next to the cone with two clothespins attached that correspond to the color of each player’s poly spot. Each set of opponents receives one ball.
How to Play:
Students take turns with their opponent throwing at the cone trying to knock down the dice to score points. If a student knocks down the dice, they add the points to the scorecard by moving his/her clothespin to the number of points that they accumulate. After adding his/her points, the student resets the dice on top of the PVC pipe. The first student to reach 21 points, or the player with the most points at the end of the allotted time will be deemed the winner.
The Dice Bonk scorecard is a simple way to keep score while playing. Just print out the scorecard, laminate it, and clip two different colored clothespins to each side. Students move the clothespin to add the amount of points they receive each time they knock off the dice. This eliminates any arguments about what the score is.
Dice Bonk is an activity that can be modified and played while practicing different sports or skills. Check out some of the variations below.
- A bowling variation by Mark Jungman (@NorthPolkwestPE)
- A kicking variation by David Kober (@Dkob5)
- A lacrosse shooting variation by Julie Hudnall (@JHudnallPE)
- A frisbee variation by Julie Hudnall (@JHudnallPE)
- A hockey variation by Jennifer Traficano (@TarwaterPE)
- An underhand throwing variation by Roy Anderson (@PE4alifetime)
- A volleyball variation by Cherry View PE (@Cherry_view_PE)
- ULTIMATE STUDENT CHOICE DICE BONK by Tanner Roos (@MrRoosPE)
- This variation includes 20+ dice bonk variations for students to choose from which include a spike ball bounce, badminton serve, football hike, exercise band fling, golf putt, basketball shot and many more!
Recommended Equipment for Dice Bonk:
Do you have a dice bonk variation that you’d like to share? Share them below in the comments! Follow me on twitter @MikemorrisPE or visit my website www.mikemorrispe.com for more physical education activities and resources.