Game type: 'Charades' (acting game), 'Your mother and my mother...' (counting-out rhyme)
Alternative types: mime games, guessing games, rhymes, language play, decision making rhymes, counting-out, word games

Handwritten description of the acting game 'Charades' and a transcription of a counting-out rhyme compiled by Hazel Vost, an 11 year old student at Errol Street Primary School, for Dr Dorothy Howard on 25 August 1954. Vost describes 'Charades' as a game usually played by girls, which can involve any number of teams. She writes that each team select an act, which they perform to their opponents. Using the example of Shakespeare, Vost explains that each act performed must contain a clue such as the use of the word 'Shake' or 'Speare'. She notes that the first team to correctly identify the act accrues a point. Vost also transcribes a counting-out rhyme which begins: 'Your mother and my mother had a fight...'.

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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