Game name (and type): 'Beam', 'Tens', 'Sevens' (ball games), 'Brownie put his false teeth down...' (rhyme)
Alternative type: language play

Handwritten game descriptions compiled for Dr Dorothy Howard by Robbyn Vickery, Diana Park, Desley Christison and Fay Hutton, students at Clayfield College, in October 1954. Vickery describes the rules of the ball game 'Beam', which involves two players placed on either side of a wooden beam usually located under an elevated house. If a player's ball rebounds off the beam and they catch it, they score a point. If the ball misses the beam or passes over to the other side, the opponent scores. Park describes 'Tens' as a popular school game involving two players. Players take turns to bounce a ball in sets of declining number beginning at ten. Similarly, 'Sevens' involves bouncing a ball against a wall in groups of diminishing number beginning at seven. Described by Christison, 'Sevens' can be played by any number of girls. Hutton transcribes the nonsensical rhyme 'Brownie put his false teeth down upon a chair...'.

One of a collection of letters describing a children's games written to children's Folklorist Dorothy Howard between 1954 and 1955. Dr Howard came to Australia in 1954-55 as an American Fulbright scholar to study Australian children's folklore. She travelled across Australia for 10 months collecting children's playground rhymes, games, play artefacts, etc. This letter, together with the other original fieldwork collected by Dr Howard during this period, is preserved in the Dorothy Howard Collection manuscript files, part of the Australian Children's Folklore Collection (ACFC), Archive Series 3. The ACFC is an extensive collection documenting children's folklore and related research.

Physical Description

Handwritten game description in blue ink on lined paper. Features text written by four different hands; text printed on both sides of page.

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