See more synonyms for hopscotch on Thesaurus.com
  1. a children's game in which a player tosses or kicks a small flat stone, beanbag, or other object into one of several numbered sections of a diagram marked on the pavement or ground and then hops on one foot over the lines from section to section and picks up the stone or object, usually while standing on one foot in an adjacent section.
verb (used without object) Informal.
  1. to jump or leap from one place to another: Small birds hopscotched on the lawn.
  2. to journey quickly and directly from one usually far place to another: ambassadors hopscotching from Moscow to Paris to London.
  3. to move or pass through something, as a geographical area or a field of endeavor, making many brief stops: The candidate hopscotched through four states in two days.
  4. to shift from one thing to another quickly or abruptly: The story hopscotches from the present to the past in a confusing way.
verb (used with object) Informal.
  1. to jump or leap over.
  2. to cross over (a large area or distance) in one continuous action: She hopscotches the country in her private plane.
  3. to cross or travel through erratically or abruptly: The escaped convicts hopscotched the valley.

Origin of hopscotch

First recorded in 1795–1805; hop1 + scotch1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for hopscotch

Historical Examples of hopscotch

  • We p. 71played hopscotch, which is good training for the calves of the legs.

  • With careful tread he passed over a hopscotch court with its forgotten pickeystone.


    James Joyce

  • Of children's games, that known as "Hopscotch" was originally a religious rite practised at funerals.

  • You'll feel weaker still if Hopscotch comes in and finds you with nothing unpacked!

  • Queke was probably a kind of hopscotch, and penny-prick a tossing game; both enjoyed an evil repute, according to Strutt.

British Dictionary definitions for hopscotch


  1. a children's game in which a player throws a small stone or other object to land in one of a pattern of squares marked on the ground and then hops over to it to pick it up

Word Origin for hopscotch

C19: hop 1 + scotch 1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for hopscotch

1801 (from 1789 as hop-scot), from hop (v.) + scotch (n.2) "scratch," from the lines scored in the dirt to make the squares for the game.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper