17 Art: Games of the Mid-1800’s

Children worked in the fields or at their family businesses during much of the Civil War.  Many times, their help was necessary for their family to survive.  On the few occasions that they could play, they found ordinary objects such as sticks, dirt to play hop scotch, or a wagon hoop to run along side.  Occasionally children would have marbles, a top or a cup and ball, but usually only one of these.  Today we’re going to play with all of the toys available.


Please review the instructions and watch the videos before class.

EHA Supplies:

(Please note that the students will not take these supplies home and they should be returned to EHA or your Campus Leader after class)

Pick up Sticks

Hold all the sticks, except the black, in your hand and let them fall. Then try to be the player to earn the most points in the game of Pick Up Sticks. The name of this fun game pretty much says it all. Earn 50 points for blue sticks, 40 points for green sticks, 25 points for red sticks, and 10 points for yellow. Use the black stick to help you pick up the other sticks.

Be careful, if you move more than one stick at a time your turn is up and the next player could earn more points than you. Pick Up Sticks is a great game for families with young children. See how competitive your family can get when faced with being the first to get 500 points and picking up the most sticks. Good luck playing Pick Up Sticks. Try it with your friends and family today.

In order to win Pick Up Sticks you need to be the first player to achieve 500 points. You achieve points depending on which color stick you are able to pick up.


Be the first to go from “onsies” to “tensies”
1 – Onsies
2 – Twosies
3 – Threesies
4 – Foursies
5 – Fivsies
6 – Sixies
7 – Sevensies
8 – Eightsies
9 – Ninesies
10 – Tensies    

Set up the game:
Begin by throwing your jacks onto the ground in front of you.  Try and make the jacks land not too far apart or too close together.

Playing Jacks:
Throw the ball into the air … pick up one jack … then catch the ball after it bounces one time. Continue picking up the jacks one at a time. When you have collected all the jacks, throw them again and start picking the jacks up two at a time (twosies). When you get to threesies you have to pick up the three sets of three first, then pick up the left over jack. Continue on until you are at tensies. You can then declare the winner as the first one to tens, or go back down again to onesies.

Your turn continues until you either: miss the ball, fail to pick up the jacks, move a jack, or drop a jack that you have picked up. Your turn is then over and the next person goes.

If after you throw the jacks and two (or more) jacks are touching you can either leave them, or pick up the jacks and drop them to spread them out.

Who goes first:
Throw the jacks up in the air and trying to catch as many as possible with both hands together ( your palms have to be face down – thumb to thumb). Whoever catches the most jacks goes first.

Variations for the game of Jacks:

Black Widow
You have to play from ones to tens without missing. If you miss then you have to start again at ones.

No bouncies
Go from one to tens without letting the ball bounce before you pick up the jacks.

 Double bouncies
Pick up the jacks and then catch the ball after it bounces twice.

 Cherries in a basket
Cup your hand and throw the ball with the opposite hand. You have to then place the jacks in your cupped hand – one through tens.

 Pigs in a Pen
Place your hand slightly cupped on the ground with the side of your hand resting on the ground. Then throw the ball with the opposite hand and slide the jacks into the “pig pen” ones through tens.

 Over the fence
Place you hand on the ground straight and you have to place the jacks on the other side of the “fence” – ones through tens.

 Around the world
After you throw the ball you have to make a circle in the air around the ball before it bounces – one to tens.

 Left handed
Switch the hand you normally throw the ball with.


Please visit this site and if possible, show the video to your class:



Please review:  http://www.wikihow.com/Play-Hopscotch


  1. Set the games out around the room before class.
  2. Meet with your class in the hallway and discuss the rules of each game. 
  3. Assign groups of two to four students
  4. Groups will have 6 minutes before rotating to the next activity



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