Game type: 'Charades' (acting game), 'Dots' (paper and pencil game)
Alternative types: mime games, guessing games, word games

Typed descriptions of the acting game 'Charades' written by Hazel Vost and the paper and pencil game 'Dots' composed by Frank Syaranamual, students at Errol Street Primary School, for Dr Dorothy Howard in August 1954. It has been assumed that Dr Howard typed these versions of the original descriptions at a later date. 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.

Syaranamual describes 'Dots' as a game suitable for boys and girls, which is played at home or school all year round. The game's rules are somewhat unclear; however, it appears that players take turns to place dots on a sheet of paper in an attempt to form squares. The opposing player seeks to prevent their opponent from forming a square. Syaranamual notes that each square created accrues a point and is initialed by its owner. At the game's end, each player counts their squares with the highest number declared the winner.

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

Typed game descriptions in black ink on paper. Features text on one side of page only.

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