Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Games of my Childhood: Maalis-alis

Tagalog: Maalis, alis
Ilonggo: Kaya, kulob
English: Palms up/Palms down grouping or elimination process

I promised to blog about this in my previous post and this is simply a game of elimination - to find out which kids will play in one team or who will be the "it" for a game that is just starting.

So everyone forms a circle and puts their right hand out in the center, palm facing down. When everyone has put in their hand, all will say "maalis, alis!" or in English it means, "Whoever will be out, will be out."

While saying (more like shouting) this, you decide whether you will keep your hands palm up or down. Then everyone looks at the palms up or down and those that have the least number will continue to do it until only one is left. The one left will be the it.

For example there are 8 players. All 8 kids will put out their hands. Then they say, "maalis, alis!" Say 5 had their palms up and 3 had their palms down. The 5 will be safe and leave the circle. The 3 will continue to put out their hands, say "maalis, alis" and decide whether they want plams up or down. When there is one left that is different from the rest, that person is the "it". No complaints, no arguments. Simple process of elimination.

This method is also used for deciding on groupings. Say eight children again want to play a game that needs 2 groups of four. Everyone will do the "maalis, alis" method (MAM) and those who have palms down will be one group and those who have palms up will be another. If there is unequal numbers; say there were 5 palms up and 3 palms down, the group with the lesser number will decide who they want to be in their group from the group with more members. Again once decided, no questions, no arguments, the game begins!

What children learn:

1. You get to be a member of any group depending on how your hands fall
2. No matter how small or big you are, everyone gets to play the elimination round
3. You learn to work well with whatever team you were dealt with or not win the game at all
4. Eventually everyone gets to be part of a team and gets a chance to play.
5. Listen to your gut feel and follow it - but if you changed palms, no regrets; you still get to play the games!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The Games of my Childhood: Hide and Seek

The Games of my Childhood: Hide and Seek
Larong Bata Series: Taguan
Ilonggo/Hiligaynon: Panagu-ay
Cebuano/Sugbuhanon: Tagu-tago

Equipment: A huge tree, lots of open spaces and nooks and crannies
Number of players: minimum 2, to as many
Minimum age: 4 years old
Best time to play: A night, under a really bright full moon; or in the afternoon when adults require all the young to take a nap (siesta)

Mechanics: Using a system to choose the “it” – i.e. rocks-paper-scissor or “maalis-alis” (to be blogged soon) – the it then uses the tree to close his eyes and count till 100 (or 50 depending on what’s been decided amongst the group) and the rest find hiding places – usually nearby and wait till they are free to run up to the tree and “save” themselves while the “it’ is busy looking for the other members. Once the “it” sees you, and calls your name – you will be the next “it”. Everyone will be called out of their hiding place and the countdown begins again.

Tips: Hide somewhere near the “save tree” this way, you can easily run to save yourself. Once saved, you can try looking for the other’s hiding places but be careful not to give them away to the “it”.

Skills children learn while playing this game:

  1. to hide well

  2. to be a thorough seeker

  3. to run fast in order to win and save yourself in a race to the save tree against the it

  4. to be part of a group effort to set rules

  5. to follow the groups agreed upon rules

  6. to accept that at least once you will become “it” too and it’s no big deal

  7. to be magnanimous in winning (everyone hates a humbug)

  8. to enjoy nature, i.e. the open spaces, the save tree, the moon and cool breeze

  9. to enjoy without complicated toys or equipment

  10. to learn to go home when called even if your friends are still playing

About Me

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J'ai deux coeur, ma mari et ma fille. Prefere la theatro y la cinema y tambien leer muchos livros. Mahilig din akong makinig sa mga tugtuging Pilipino at mga kakaiba tulad na freestyle na jazz. Shu fi aqel elyaum? Tabemashyooo!!! Hai, so desu. Amo gid na ya ang nanami-an ko himuon, ang magsige-kaon!!! Mau lagi nga ingon ani ko kay sige lang ug luto akong bana.