Game type: 'The Boat Game' (games with shapes)
Alternative types: elimination games

Handwritten description of a game with shapes 'The Boat Game' compiled by Jeffrey Scott, a 12 year old student at Errol Street Primary School, for Dr Dorothy Howard on 25 August 1954. 'Games with shapes' are games which are played in or around a particular pattern or shape, usually drawn on the ground. The pattern or shape is specific to the game and usually drawn the same way each time. Scott describes 'The Boat Game' as a game usually played by boys, which requires a whistle and possibly some chalk with which to draw. He writes that the game is mostly played at Scouts all year round. To play, he explains that the shape a boat is drawn on the ground. At the sound of a whistle, players race to secure a place within the outline of the boat. Scott states that the boat's circumference is reduced with each round, noting that players who fail to stand within the confines of the boat are eliminated from the game. He lists other players of 'The Boat Game' including Bill, Jim and Harry.

One of a collection of letters describing a children's game 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 paper. Features borders ruled in red pencil; text written on one side of page only.

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