Friday, November 12, 2010

Milk Ring And Pin - A Thanksgiving Game

Ring and Pin is a simple, hand eye coordination game, that has been played for hundreds of years by Native Americans, and would have been familiar to the Wampanoag people, encountered by the Pilgrims.

The form, and rules, vary some from tribe to tribe. But, it is generally made up of a sharp stick, or bone needle, attached to a length of string, with a loop at the opposite end, and strung with hollow deer bones.

The idea is to hold the stick, flip the rope up into the air, trying to catch as many bones as possible, through their holes, with the stick, on the way down. Usually, you get one point for each bone you catch on the stick, with extra points given if you catch the bone closest to the stick.

I thought it might be fun to make our own version of the game. We didn't have any deer bones available...okay, we actually do deer bones available, this is hunting season in Montana, after all, but ewww! However, it seems to me, the idea is to use what you have available, that you might otherwise throw away. So, we went with what we had on hand in the house - a craft stick, a piece of twine (14 inches long), and 11 milk jug rings.


We tied one end of the string to the craft stick, threaded on 8 milk rings, and tied the last three to the loose end of the string, flailing them out, to keep the other rings from slipping off.

Since, we have one green ring, at the end, we assigned 5 points to it, and 1 point to all the others. It takes a few tosses to get the hang of the game, but it's quite addictive, and has really brought out the competitive spirit in the children.


If the Wampanoag people whooped, and hollered as much as my children, while playing the game, the Pilgrims might have thought they were savages - I'm pretty sure we have some neighbors, who would agree.


It's great to be a homeschooler.

7 comments:

Christy said...

That sounds like fun.

I'm so glad you didn't use the deer bones.

Phyllis said...

Hee..hee...I know what you mean. That looks like a fun game. I would love to make it, but we don't get milk in plastic gallon containers....hmmm....I wonder what else I can find that would work...

Valerie @ Frugal Family Fun Blog said...

LOL It looks like great fun! We'll have to give it a go too!!

Raising a Happy Child said...

How fun! I had a game similar to this when I was a child, and I agree that it's quite addictive.

Ticia said...

My kids would probably love this....... I remember having a similar game and being horrible at it.

Bending Birches said...

great photos!

Joyful Learner said...

We don't have milk jug rings but we do have a ring toss game. But your version looks like a whole lot more fun. Great photos!