At risk of being once again accused of having ‘lost my marbles’ I’m thinking it’s high time we all went back in time– and started finding lost marbles, before it was too late for future generations. What I’m talking about is putting the simple and inexpensive toys and games, back into the play lives of our over stressed and over stimulated children.
Size: Size of marbleworks starter set and advanced marble run toys are different. However, as per the size of marble run toy kit, it will take few times to build the marble run. So, in this case your child will grow the patience factor which will help out your child in future as well. If you compare advanced marble run toys with other toys available in market for playing so you can see that other available toys aren’t able to play role in improving such incredible feature growth of the child.
Advanced marble run toys are designed in a manner that it can be built in to custom tracks. Such toy set comes in good size and consistent with many other types of marbles to build up ‘traffic jams’ becomes easy for your child. Moreover, apart from the given guide for tack building, children can build their own marble run track. So, in this case children will start to think as well as use their mind to do anything new. So, building the track for marble run in a small number of pieces make sharp your child’s thinking and to enhance the growth of mind.
Makes you wonder!
With more and more families considering ‘staycations’ or opting for mini-vacations and camping vacations– the ‘cost’ of play when it is a question of our children– has taken on new significance and definitions.
Marble?? More Considerations
As I talked about in a previous hub, it’s time we put silly business back in the life of children. There is a bunch of high tech and high dollar competition all vying for the care of our children and budgets. Well, perhaps some parents and many kids at first glance would roll their eyes at being given an inexpensive bag of marbles and being told,’ Here, go play marbles. ‘
There’s a truth to playing marbles that has to be re-examined. Perhaps, our children have gotten so far from really knowing the joys of play, that we need to arrest and teach them (and ourselves) a new perspective– if we wish to momentarily disconnect their hands and bodies from their IPODs, G2s, and Wii’s.
So, how do you get sophisticated consumers like children today, to stop and discover games that will serve them? It’s simple, stop and teach them and challenge them, by playing marbles with them. You might be very surprised at the results.
Marbles are not unique to the twentieth century or the nineteenth century– the games have been played at least since the time of the Romans and Egyptians. Others say playing marbles goes back to prehistoric times.
Here in the United States, it would surprise most to learn that playing marbles was so popular, that we used to have a U.S. National Marbles Tournament. We still have tournaments. However, they’re lesser known to our youth.
Marbles were primarily manufactured in the U.S. in West Virginia, Indiana, and Akron, Ohio. Today, marbles for kids are now largely imported from China.
One of our remaining American factories, located in Paden City– Marble King, produces one million marbles a day, 365 days a year. Its marbles are used in recreational, decorative and industrial applications such as spray paint cans.
The simplest and oldest marble game used to be known as Ring-taw, then simply fell into just being called marbles. This is normally the marble game that most adults today remember from their childhood.
The game begins by making a circle about one foot wide either drawn with chalk, or with a stick on the ground. In it is placed a number of marbles, one or two from each player.
Outside and around this, some six feet away, another circle is drawn. The beginner then kneels, with their hand against their outer line and shoots their playing marble (known as a taw), at the group located in the central ring.
This is done by pinching the taw between the knuckle of the bent thumb and the curve of the index, and suddenly straightening the thumb.
If the player knocks any out, they’re his to keep, and the player may aim again from the spot at which his taw has stopped.
If, however, the player misses, and his taw remains within one of the rings, he must leave it here, in the event that the next player wishes to shoot at it.
If hit, the owner of the taw must hand over one marble, but no taw can be taken. It can be aimed at only once.
In the game of pitchstone– two players with two marbles play this game. Player # 1 throws his marble down. If his companion can hit it with his own, he wins ten points, and’s got a right to try again. However, he must aim from the spot at which his marble stops.
The winning player may keep on until he misses, when the other player takes a turn. A certain number should be agreed upon before the game– say one hundred– and the player whose points reach this first will become the winner. Sometimes this game has been played in 3rd world countries with pebbles.
A more unusual marble game is the Oval Ring-Taw variation of the former-fashioned ring-taw marble game.
Instead of a circle, a large oval, about three feet long and two feet wide is drawn. At each end of this, a small space is marked off by a straight line from side to edge of the oval, and midway between these two spaces a small cross is made.
On this mark a marble is placed. Other marbles (one each) are placed at each end of the spaces. A straight line, as long as the oval is drawn on the ground, at a radius of four feet from the end of the oval, and from this line the taws are shot by the players.
The player may shoot from any portion of the line, and should choose a job that gives the best opportunity of hitting one of the three marbles. It is a common practice to lay up– that is, to shoot the taw with little force, so that it rolls into the ring and makes the next aim easier.
However, as each player shoots in turn, this puts the taw in danger– yet players are willing to take the risk of having their taws knocked out by others, rather than shoot them through the ring time after time, without hitting anything.
It should be remembered though, in this game, there are fewer marbles to aim at, and it is now more exciting and interesting than ring-taw.
After drawing a long straight line in the dirt, each player places upon it, one or more marbles– all separated from each other using one or two inches.
Then, another line is drawn at a radius of eight feet. Each player takes his turn to shoot once at the ‘plums. ‘
Those he knocks out are his to ‘keep’ as his own. Additionally, every time he misses he gives up a marble.
Additionally, smaller than average majority marbles are the peawees or mini’s. Also, the large marble of all is about the magnitude of a pool table ball or tennis ball, and they’re known as a grandfather.
To play this marble game, you make or draw a two foot ring about eight inches from a fence or a wall. A line is then drawn about seven feet long from the middle of the ring, and another line is drawn across the end of this, at which the players take their stand.
Any number of kids may play, but from three to six players provide the best game. A large ‘alley’ is placed in the centre of the circle and the players take it in turns, in a standing position, to shy at the alley with a ‘taw. ‘
If the player misses, he pays a marble to every one of the other players. If he hits the alley, he receives a marble from each and goes on shooting until he misses, when it’s the next player’s turn.
Two players take their stand opposite a wall, against which one of them tosses a marble. When it has rebounded and rolled along the ground, the second player follows suit, with one of his own marbles– trying to throw it in such a manner that in rolling back, it will strike the first marble.
If successful, they then takes up the one so hit as a prize, but leaves the marble they threw where it lies. Under no other circumstances must a marble be picked up until all the marbles of each player have been thrown.
Then, those lying furthest from the wall may take up in turn, and tossed against the wall. It requires skill and judgment to play this game.
This is a marble game that French children used to play. The outline of a serpent is drawn on the ground, with two coils, as the picture above shows.
The eye of the serpent is a small hole made in the ground. The players start from the tail, and in turn shoot their taws along between the curved lines.
Any who send their marbles outside these lines, or permit them to pause at one of the two points marked AA, must go back to the tail.
Also, anyone whose marble is struck by that of any other while on the trip to the head, must begin again. The winner is the man who first reaches the eyes and rolls their taw into the hole.
The pyramid marble game is made by using one of the players placing many of his marbles close together in a band and others on top of them. A little circle is drawn around this pyramid.
This player then agrees that none of the other players may shoot at it by paying him one marble for every shot. If the aim is successful, the marbles will roll out of the ring and will belong to the player who knocked down the pyramid.
It has to be built up again for the next player. Of course, the owner makes his profit out of the people who aim without hitting. This is very often the case.
Thanks Unchained Grace! Glad you enjoyed what can and should always be a ‘must have’ part of childhood for all children.
Out of all the toys I had as a kid, my marble collection was my alltime personal favorite. Yeah, I thought I was bigtime back there in Queens, NYC. Came to the ‘wars’ with my marbles in my blue&gold Crown Royal cloth bag. I had some personal favorites. I also found later in life what playing marbles teaches you and you listed every one.
What a beautiful hub. Teaching my kids to play marbles, just as my great-aunt taught me, has been on my list of what to do.
Thanks Anthony James Barnett! You ‘d be surprised that those simpler times, naive, and good are all still there waiting for us in the background if we choose to revive them.
Took me right back, Jerilee. All of a sudden I was in the dusty road outside my house (little traffic then) flicking marbles with friends. Simpler times, naive, good.
Thanks stephhicks68! Didn’t think about the Dollar Store as a source, then that’s a good tip. One trick with kids is to up the anty and challenge them and their friends to a neighborhood tournament, complete with refreshments. You’ll find for weeks later, they’re still playing marbles.
Thanks Nolimits Nana! Being the oldest, it’s not lost on me just one of the reasons I did not play marbles much as a child is that I knew my younger siblings would have beat me. I wasn’t about to grant them the satisfaction.
Growing up in a family of 8 children, marbles was either of the games we played together. Never could beat my oldest brother.
Thanks Frieda Babbley! It would have made the hub too long. However, collecting marbles is a big hobby for many individuals and some old and unusual marbles are quite valuable.
Thanks Nancy’s Niche! As my mom pointed out I was not one of those girls, but did learn to value playing marbles when I had my own children and expect to play marbles with my granddaughter who lives in the family quite a bit this summer.
Oh what happy memories this article brought back. I was really good (for being a girl) at playing marbles. Of course I was a tom boy, and the one girl in the home so of course I knew how to play well…
Thanks AshleyVictoria! That was the competition I meant to include. There’s a great deal more skill involved than parents and kids realize and we should be having more competitions.
Thanks Hawkesdream! The saying less is best certainly comes to mind when it is a question of entertaining kids and inspiring them.
Thanks mom for outing me. Ha ha I remember those facts very well, I’m a do as I say sort of person ha ha– not as I do. Actually, I’ve played a great deal of marble games as an adult, so guess I was watching Den and Jo a lot closer than I let on, however, there is no denying I was a prissy girl. The only person I ever beat as a kid at marbles was Del and I’m real sure he let me win.