THE GAMES OF MYGRANDPARENTS’CHILDHOODCOMENIUS PROJECTBULGARIA LITHUANIA 26 – 30.04.2011
Hide-and-seek is a variant of the game tag, in which a number ofplayers conceal themselves in the environment, to be found by one ormore seekers. Numerous variants of the game can be found aroundthe world. In some variations players may move to other hiding spotswhile the seeker, generally known as "it", is not looking, and thosewho can remain hidden the longest are considered to be the bestplayers. In Bulgaria indefinite number of children can play the game. Onehas to be chosen for “seeker” and the others are “hiders”. The seekercloses his eyes and counts slowly aloud to a certain number while theother players are hiding. Hiders should make a dash for Home Base,which is previously marked. Touching the base area makes a hidersafe, and the aim of the game is to touch base without being tagged.The seeker continues to search for hiders and if he/she finds nonethen he is the seeker again in the next game. However, if he finds andtags someone before they are able to touch base, he calls out in a loud„That‟s Michael! But if the seeker confuses the name of the player thegame starts from the beginning. The mistake is being notified by theplayers as they shout “Flat pot!” The last player announced by theseeker replaces him in the next game. In order to make it impossiblefor hiders to touch the base immediately after the seeker opens his eyeshe usually says in the end of the counting: “Whoever is in front of me,whoever is behind me, whoever is by my sides is going to seek threetimes.”
Tag is a playground game played worldwide that involves two or more players chasing other players in an attempt to tag or touch them, usually with their hands. Most forms of the game have no teams, scores, or special equipment. In our country tag can begin really spontaneously and that is the most common way. Another way is to choose one of the players saying a rhyme and then he/she starts chasing the others. If he reaches someone he has to touch him saying the words “You chase!”. And that is how the game goes on.
Broken phone is a game that Bulgarian children play. Children are placed side by side in a row and the first one whispers in his neighbour‟s ear any word, phrase or sentence. The action repeats until the last child hears the word and says it aloud. Very often the last child says something that has nothing to do with the original word and this is the fun of the game. If the final word is not correct, the child goes last in the telephone row.
Dodgeball is any of a variety of games in which players try to hit other players on the opposing team with balls while avoiding being hit. It is played by 4, 6, 10 and more participants who divide into two teams. Each team selects a "consul" and occupies a half of the playfield. Consuls stand behind the final line of the opponent team. A lot determines which team begins the game. The aim of each team is to hit with a ball and take out all the opponent players. The one that is hit and fails to catch the ball goes behind the final line of his "consul". The same rule applies if people try to catch the ball but drop it. Head shots will not be counted. It only eliminates the thrower immediately. If the ball remains in the playfield of his team, they have the right to continue the game. Before dodging the participants have to pass the ball to the consul 1 or 3 times and then while the ball rolls on the ground slightly all the teammates don‟t have to touch it. Everyone who touches the ball is eliminated and the other team takes a score. At last when all the teammates have been hit and taken out of the field the two consuls go in and other players are chosen to be consuls. The game ends only when one of them has been hit. There are some magics that consuls can do. If he says “centrifuge” the players begin to whirl and he throws the ball. When he says “tomato” everybody sticks his bottom up and the consul hits. When he announces “earth-ball” all the players have to straddles and the ball should pass under their feet without touching them. If the ball is a “fire ball” everybody have to jump over it and if anybody fails to do will be out.
Blind mans buff is played in a spacious area, such as outdoors or ina large room, in which one player, designated as "It", is blindfolded and gropesaround attempting to touch the other players without being able to see them,while the other players scatter and try to avoid the person who is "it", hiding inplain sight and sometimes teasing them to make them change direction. Blind mans buff is ideally played in an area free of dangerous obstructions sothat the “blind man” will not suffer injury from tripping over or hittingsomething. In one of the versions “the blind man” has to guess who is the playerthat he has caught. He runs his fingers over the player‟s body in order torecognize him by his clothes or physic features. If he manages to do it his fellowstarts seeking in the new game.Jumping rope Skipping rope (British English) or jump rope (American English)is the primary tool used in the game of skipping played by children and manyyoung adults, where one or more participants jump over a rope swung so that itpasses under their feet and over their heads. This may consist of one participantturning and jumping the rope, or a minimum of three participants taking turns,two of whom turn the rope while one or more jumps. This is called long rope.Sometimes the latter is played with two turning ropes; this form of the activity iscalled Double Dutch and is significantly more difficult. Jump-rope rhymes areoften chanted beginning when the skipper jumps in and ending when the skipperis tripped up. Jumping rope is an activity not only suited for competition or recreation butalso it‟s an exercise similar to jogging or bicycle riding. Ten minutes of jumpingrope is roughly the equivalent of running an eight-minute mile. Jumping ropefor 15–20 minutes is enough to burn off the calories from a candy bar.
Wishbone is the name of an old game. It is usually played by two people. Theone shouldn‟t take any kind of objects that the opponent wants to give him. To start the game a branched chicken or turkey bone ("furcula", referred to asa jaw bone or the wishbone) need to be broken by two players. Their goal is topass an object under some pretext that the other will take. The player who hasgot the smaller part is the only one that should not take anything. When one opponent passes an object to the other, the recipient must say“I know!”, in this way you show the other that you do not forget about the game.If you do not say it, your friend says "One, two, three ... Wishbone " and that‟show he wins the game and you have to carry out his wish.Tell me, oracle! At least three kids should take part in this game. Everybody sitdown on a bench. One of them has to be chosen and plays the oracle‟s role. Ifyou are the oracle you should sit in front of the kids and close your eyes withyour head down. Then another child starts asking you pointing at one of them“Tell me, oracle! What should it be?” The oracle calls all the children by namesof things, plants, animals or anything he can think of. In the end the oraclestands up, opens his eyes and chooses one of the names that he called theplayers. The kid that received the same name becomes the new oracle.
White butterflies is a game that is widespread all over Bulgaria. Theparticipants are mainly girls. They arrange in a circle. Two girls hold theirhands under the elbows and dance spinning around in the middle of the circle.Everybody sings: White butterflies, Where did you fly? Near is your way, Select your pals ... The first is mine The second is yours… While singing the last words each of the dancing girls runs to the others andselects one that encircles them. The new couple enters the circle and beginsdancing under the accompaniment of the song.
Burn, burn handkerchief In this game the children squat in a circle. Only one kid holds a handkerchief and runs around the circle singing “Burn, burn handkerchief, the dog is pulling it!”. His task is to drop the hanky behind one‟sback. The one that gets the hanky stands up and starts chasing the other one and tries to take his place in the circle. This game is really funny and you should try to play it.Rubber band jumping was popular in my primary school. This game can helpyou to practice your jumping skills, develops coordination, and also meets lots offriends. Rubber-band jumping is a low cost game. You only need some rubber bands.We loop rubber bands together tightly until we have a larger one (You can selectthe length you like). When you get three players together, you can start yourgame. Children say rhymes or sing songs to the rhythm of the game. Heres how we play this special game. Two kids stand opposite each other and extend the rubber band. One playerjumps and stands on one side of the rubber band, carrying the two sides together.Then she jumps again and made the two sides separate. Then she jumps againinto the middle of the rubber-band and after that she jumps outside of it. There are certain grades of the height of the rubber band. The first grade is thelevel of the ankles of two players, the second - the hamstrings, the third - thelevel of the knee, the fourth - at the butt, the fifth - the waist, the sixth - at thearms, the seventh - the neck, eighth - behind the ears, ninth - elastic is held overthe forehead, tenth - the rubber band is high with hands stretched up.
Hopscotch is a childrens game which can be played with several players oralone. Hopscotch is a popular playground game. To play hopscotch, a court is first laid out on the ground. Depending on theavailable surface, the court is either scratched out in dirt, or drawn with chalkon pavement. Designs vary, but the course is usually composed of a series oflinear squares interspersed with blocks of two lateral squares. Traditionally thecourse ends with a "safe" or "home" base in which the player may turn beforecompleting the reverse trip. The home base may be a square, a rectangle, or asemicircle. The squares are then numbered in the sequence in which they are tobe hopped. The first player tosses the marker (typically a stone, coin or bean bag) into thefirst square. The marker must land completely within the designated square andwithout touching a line or bouncing out. The player then hops through thecourse, skipping the square with the marker in it. Single squares must be hoppedon one foot. For the first single square, either foot may be used. Side by sidesquares are straddled, with the left foot landing in the left square, and the rightfoot landing in the right square. Optional squares marked "Safe", "Home", or"Rest" are neutral squares, and may be hopped through in any manner withoutpenalty. After hopping into the "Safe", "Home", or "Rest" the player must thenturn around and return through the course (square 9, then squares 7 & 8, nextsquare 6 and so forth) on one or two legs depending on the square until he orshe reaches the square with their marker. They then must retrieve their markerand continue the course as stated without touching a line or stepping into asquare with another players marker. Upon successfully completing the sequence, the player continues the turn bytossing the marker into square number two, and repeating the pattern. If while hopping through the court in either direction the player steps on a line,misses a square, or loses balance, the turn ends. Players begin their turns wherethey last left off. The first player to complete one course for every numberedsquare on the court wins the game.
Draughts is a form of draughts board game and it is played by two players withpools, each of them has got nine pieces of a colour. Players have to put them onthe board of special places marked with a circle. For a game of Draughts also known as Koram a playing field and nine pieces(white and black) are used. The pieces are off the board at the beginning of the game. Players take turnsplacing a piece on the board until they put them. The goal of the game is toarrange three pieces vertically or horizontally which is called “Lady”. If youmanage to do this you have the right to take away one of your opponent‟s pieces.The player can move the pool on a free neighboring position and try to make“Lady”. In one of the variants if a player is left only with three pieces - they can“jump” to any vacant position in order to prevent his opponent of making"Lady."The winner is the player who first manages to take seven of his opponent‟sdraughts.
Giants and dwarvesThis game is open to all children. They arrange in a circle, for example. A leaderneeds to be chosen. The leader stands inside the circle and gives his commands.When he says “Dwarves!” children have to squat and bent their heads down.When he says “Giants!” children have to stand up and raise their hands up. You can make it more complicate as the task given by the oralcommand of the leader and its demonstration differ (e.g. the leader says "giants"and squats at the same time).
BallsThe players draw a circle on the ground. In turns they throw their balls trying topush the opponents‟ balls out of the circle. According one of the versionschildren excavate a small hole inside the ring and try to bring their ball in it.Meanwhile they should eliminate competitors‟ balls pushing them outside thering. Having the desire to win players often use different tactics like throwing theball to a secure or remote area. Agility is an important skill in the game and alsothe beautiful colours of the balls express the aesthetic pleasure of playing thegame.