ZonemintonFocus Skills: Creating Space · Scoring a Point · Setting Up an Attack
I love teaching net and wall game tactics to my students. Being able to see students quickly develop their skills by purposefully applying them as the try to execute tactics is one of the highlights of my year, every year.
Zoneminton is a game I use early on in my middle school net and wall games tactics to help my students develop a stronger understanding of the importance of creating and attacking open space when on offense.
To help my students achieve just that, I’ve create a set of self- and peer-assessment tools. You can find these, along with the game printout and other resources in the Zoneminton Game Pack.
In Zoneminton, players face off in a familiar badminton setting. However, each player’s court is divided into three zones:
The area between the two long service lines is the three-point zone.
The area between the doubles long service line and the short service line is the one-point zone.
The area between the short service line and the net is the two-point zone.
Players play short games to five points while attempting to force their opponent to move within their court so as to create open space to attack in the higher-scoring zones.
Build One: Record Rallies
To set the game up, I like to have my students play on a a half badminton court in order to maximize individual participation in the lesson. Using the net, doubles side line, singles long service line, and centre line as the boundaries of the game, players pair up with an opponent and begin to play.
In this build, players are attempting to maintain the longest rally possible by sending the birdie back and forth over the net.
At the end of build, the teacher will invite students to fill out their “Creating Space” reflection, which is designed to help students reflect on the tactical importance of creating and attacking open space in net and wall games.
Build Two: Zoneminton
In build two, the players will get ready to play Zoneminton!
Using the short service line and the long service line for doubles, the teacher will divide each side of the court into three zones. Scoring in the back zone is worth three points, the middle zone is worth one, and the front zone is worth two. The purpose of these zones is to encourage players to force their opponent into having to move and become unbalanced in their court.
Players will play short games to five points before rotating off and allowing the next two players to have the court.
While players wait for their turn to play, they may help the players on the court by filling out their shot tracker peer-assessment tool. The purpose of this tool is to help player visualize where they are actually sending the birdie, where they are scoring points, and to reflect on what they can do to increase their level of success in the game.
Build Three: Power Points
For the final build of the game, the players will no longer play with the zones from build two. Instead the teacher will set out six non-slip polyspots on each court: three in the back end of the court and three in the front.
Players will once again begin to play, scoring a single point if they manage to get the birdie to land in their opponent’s court. However, if a player successfully scores by getting the birdie to land on a polyspot, they earn three points for themselves.
Each time a player scores on a polyspot, that polyspot is removed from the court for the rest of the game. This increases the difficulty of scoring on a polyspot as the game goes on and encourages students to execute offensive tactics related to creating and attacking open space.
Once a player manages to score 11 points, the game is done and the two next players gain access to the court.
Grade Level Outcomes
Creates open space in net and wall games with either a long- or short-handled implement by varying force or direction, or by moving the opponent from side to side and/or forward and back. (S2.M7.8)
Selects offensive shot based on the opponent’s location (hit where the opponent is not). (S2.M8.7)
What kind of space are you looking for when attempting to score a point?
How can you create additional open space in your opponent’s court?
What causes your opponent to become off-balance in their court?
Students should not interfere or step into another pair’s court.
Students should stand well beyond the boundaries of the game when waiting for their turn.
Polyspots used in the final build should be non-slip to avoid accidental falls.