Three Hundred Games & Pastimes - complete online book

A Book Of Suggestions For Children's Games And Employments.

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78                What Shall We Do Now?
The players sit in a circle, and the game is begun by one of them throwing a rolled-up handkerchief to another and at the same time calling out the name of one of the four elements— air, water, earth, or fire. If "Air" is called, the player to whom the handkerchief is thrown must at once mention some creature that flies. Having done so she throws the handkerchief to some one else, calling perhaps " Earth," whereupon that player must mention an animal that inhabits the earth. And so on. The same animal must not be mentioned twice, and when " Fire " is called, the player to whom the handkerchief is thrown must keep silence until she throws it on again. Sometimes each player, after throwing the handkerchief and calling the element, counts ten as the limit of time in which the answer must be given. If it is longer in coming, or if something is mentioned which has been mentioned before, then a forfeit follows.
This is a game which people either dislike or like very much. The players sit round the fire or table, and one of them begins by naming an article of any kind whatever, such as watering-pot. The word "watering-pot" will immediately suggest something to the next player—say " gardener." He therefore says " gardener." The next is perhaps reminded by the word " gardener" of a bunch of violets she saw the gardener carrying that morning, and she therefore says "violets"; the next at once recollects finding violets when she was at Ventnor last spring, and she therefore says " Ventnor." Thus the game goes on for, say, ten rou nds, by which time, as we have seen already, the minds of the players have been carried miles away from the original watering-pot which set them at work. It is now necessary to trace the series of suggestions back to watering-pot again. This is done by the last player mentioning, not the last thing that he thought of, but the thing which suggested that to him. (Thus, the player next him may have said, in the last round, " treacle-posset," which may have suggested to him " Mrs. Squeers." He would not, however,
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