University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Are You Game?

June 27, 2012

When my mom asked me if I wanted to go to last week’s Museum camp in February and she said it was about games I said “Sure.” I thought it would be fun because I already learned how to play the game Mancala last year at the Museum’s Domino Event and I was really good at it.

Nathaniel Abrams showing a fellow camper how to play Mancala.

I wanted to learn how to play other games like Senet, which is a lot like the board game “Sorry.” In the game, you are trying to go around the board and if someone else lands on your piece, you have to go back to the start of the game. There are some signs on the board that if you land on them you have to do what the sign means. We made our own Senet boards out of foam blocks with a painted-on checkerboard pattern.

Friday we had a Games Expo where we got to show what we did during the week to all the parents. I showed everyone about Mancala and how to play it. There were games like Senet, a Maya ballgame, and Limbo that other kids presented.

Are You Game? June 18-22

Take a turn playing games of skill and chance. Circle the globe as you discover games that are used for entertainment, learning new skills, and marking important events. Search for ancient game pieces in the Museum’s galleries, challenge a fellow camper to a friendly match of senet or mancala, and participate in a Maya ballgame. Then with your newfound knowledge, create your own game for others to try.

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