Novice Program (Peterborough Girls Hockey Association)

PrintNovice Program


In 2019-2020 PGHA will be implementing the new Hockey Canada requirements for Novice Programs (7 & 8 year old’s).  Similar to the initiation program this program represented a major shift in the way that hockey for young children is played focusing on fun, skills and half ice play.  The Novice Half-Ice Game Play Model was designed to maximize the opportunity to engage all players in the game. The core elements for this model are using running time, changing on the fly, no offside, no icing, and no face-offs after goals. 


Half Ice

Effective the 2019-2020 season Hockey Canada mandates half ice play for Novice until January 15th each year.  After January 15th players will transition to full ice play for the remainder of the season.

4 on 4

The new half ice program is based on 4 on 4 play.


Scores of games will not be kept until January 15th.


There will be no dedicated goalies.  Every girl will be given the opportunity to play net if they wish.

Length of Games

There will be three minutes for warm-up, and the game will be played as two 25-minute halves running straight time with a two-minute intermission. 


There will be a faceoff to start the game and at the beginning of the second period only.  If there is a goal or the goaltender freezes the puck the attacking team will back off and possession of the puck will go to goaltender’s team.

Line Changes

There will be no changing on the fly.  Hockey Canada recommends sounding the buzzer every 60 seconds leaving the puck where it is ensuring every player gets an equal amount of ice time.


Penalties will still be called during half-ice games. However, instead of stopping the play, the non-offending team will take possession of the puck and the official will inform the coach what penalty was called on which player. Play will continue 4-on-4, but the offending player will sit out the following shift. Coaches are asked to explain the penalty to the offending player.

Red & Blue Lines

There will be no icing or offside called during half-ice play.

Number of Players on a Team

The ideal size for novice program teams would be 18 players. During games, they will split into two squads of nine players each - eight skaters and one goaltender. However, the roster size will be determined by the number of players registered.

Hockey Canada recommends separating 7 & 8 year old players but ultimately leaves the decision to the organization.  PGHA will make a decision on this once registration for the 2019-202 season closes.

Ice Scheduling

While teams are playing the half-ice portion of the season it is possible and even likely that another team will be playing a game or practicing on the other half.

Play Against Other Centre’s

This is still under discussion and PGHA will provide and update once the details are available.

Rep Program

The rep program as we know it will no longer exist as per Hockey Canada’s direction there will be no scores kept until January 15th, and no playoffs.  The LLFHL does NOT know, at this time, if they will be running the new and modified Novice division, as it has not yet been determined who will be administering Novice (OWHA or LLFHL). 


Hockey Canada


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Printed from on Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 1:59 AM