World Cup Activities for Kids


It’s finally here. Once every four years. And teacher lives and a DVR means we can watch every single game!

But what do you do with the kids who don’t have the attention span to watch three or four games a day? How do you get them to connect to the teams and their nations?

This year, I created a little project that combines World Cup with academics in an interactive and fun way. It’s ongoing and completely customizable and fits into our Summer Plan as read, math, and be creative.

Step One: World Cup Map

The boys were given the list of the groups and two blank maps. They worked together to locate, color, and label each country. They were creative and decided to color the countries like their flags. I’ll admit it took some time and a few copies of the map until they got the hang of it. But, they are thrilled with the final product and have shared it with everyone who has come over!

Through this project, they learned more than reading a map and the location of the 32 nations competing for the title of World Champion. They learned patience, attention to detail, and teamwork. They explored map books and utilized basic research on the internet.

The completed maps lay in front of the TV now. With each new game, they race to their work and locate the country on the map. They discuss where it is, how close it is to the other team, and how far they had to travel to get to Russia. They are noticing which continent it is on. They often ask more questions that open up other subjects for discussion.

Step Two: Fun Facts


To answer their questions, there is also a two-sheet “Fun Facts” listed by groups. This is the completely flexible part. I can print as many as I want and based on their questions have them write down one specific type of information. Above, they used the internet to find the capital of each nation. Other ideas include weather, topography, common foods, religions, national celebrations, vacation destinations, famous people, and whatever will interest your children or whatever you want to teach them.

Step Three: Math

Throughout the tournament, there are great opportunities to review and teach math facts.

  • 8 groups with 4 teams each. How many teams? 32
  • Each team must play the other 3 teams in their group. It takes 6 games to determine the top two teams. If each group plays 6 games and there are 8 groups, how many games are there in the group stage? 48
  • In the group stage, a win is worth 3 points and a tie is worth 1 point. Have them tally the group points to practice simple addition.
  • During a game, ask how much time is left before halftime or the end of the game to practice subtraction strategies.

Step Four: Enjoy!

Over the next month, there are dozens of games to watch. We’ll see beautifully-placed goals, missed goals, and own-goals. We’ll watch good calls, bad calls, and missed calls. We’ll see fouls and dives that earn cards. We’ll be overjoyed and heartbroken. We’ll spend an entire month celebrating the beautiful game!

I hope these activities help your children enjoy World Cup as much as I do!


Here are the activity pages for you to download:

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