Differences in geography, climate and resources dictate that children in different countries play different types of games. Since the average annual income in Kenya is much lower than the global average, many children there don't have access to expensive video games or other toys. Still, their games make for fun adventures designed to stimulate the imagination and promote exercise and laughter. Many of the games are designed to teach kids about their native language and culture.
Escape The Lions
According to the Canadian Baptist Ministry, Escape the Lions familiarizes children with Swahili words and common animals that roam Kenya. You start with a large group of children, four of whom are the "'lions." The rest are called "mtu," which is the Swahili word for people. The goal is for the mtu to capture the lions' treasure, which consists of beanbags.
The mtu form a large circle, with the four lions blindfolded and placed in the middle surrounded by the beanbags. The mtu must take turns trying to get a beanbag without getting captured by the lions. If you get tagged by a lion you must sit out and wait for the next game. Children who succeed at getting a bean bag become lions in the next round.
Safari is a low-energy game where each child chooses to be a different animal. The children form a circle, and one child gets chosen as 'it'. If you are the "it" child, you sit in the middle of the circle. You then say an animal's name three times as quickly as you can. Whichever child chose to be that animal must try to say it once faster than the "it" child says it three times. If the "it" child succeeds, then he or she gets to change places with the other child. If not, the "it" child must keep going until he or she succeeds.
This game is similar to what other countries might call "tag." Two kids are chosen to be the elephants, or "it." They link arms. The rest of the children run in an attempt to avoid being tagged by "it." Any time a child is tagged, he or she links arms with the other elephants. The last two children to be tagged are chosen as the elephants in the next round.
Fix The Reserve
The children are split into two teams and separated far enough apart so neither can hear the other one speak. Players on team one are assigned to be different types of animals. The same happens with team two, with players assigned to be the same animals as team one. The teams are then brought together and told that animals have gone missing. Each child must imitate his or her particular animal in order to find their match on the other team.
Splish Splish, Splash
Since Kenya is very hot and water is a luxury, this game will cool the children down while giving them a fun time. The children sit in a large circle. One child is chosen as "it" and is told to fill a sponge with water. "It" walks around the circle holding the sponge over the other kids' heads and saying "splish, splish, splish." At some point "it" squeezes the sponge on top of one child's head so water comes out. Those two children then run around the circle. If "it" gets to the other child's seat first, the other child becomes "it" for the next round.
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