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Forget fancy smart gadgets and experience the carefree days where play involved actual physical activity with siblings, cousins and neighbours. A perfect opportunity for older family members to reconnect and share fun childhood memories with the younger ones in the family! Ignite the playful spirit of kampong days by recreating these traditional games!

Five Stones (Batu Seremban)

Widely popular among kampong girls who used real stones, Five Stones has evolved into a tiny pyramid-shaped cloth bags that resembles mini bean bags.

Challenge your family to this seemingly easy game that requires great hand-eye coordination, concentration and alertness. You can watch this tutorial on how to play the game.

You will need a cloth, rice or beans or grains, scissors, and a sewing kit.

1. Cut out five small (approx. 5cm by 5cm) square pieces of cloth.
2. Sew the sides of the cloth together to form a small pouch, leaving an opening to add in the beans.
3. Fill the pouch with beans, grains or rice before sealing the pouch. We suggest you keep each pouch about ¾ full or the pouch may be too heavy to play with.
4. Once you’re done with 5 small pouches, you’re ready to play!

Zero Point

In this old school game, rubber bands are interconnected to form a 4-metre long rope. Participants are required to jump or cross over these rubber ropes as they shout “zero point”.

The rubber-band rope gets inched higher every round of the game by fellow players – starting from the ankles, to knees, then waist, shoulder, ears and even over the head! Get ready to break a sweat with this game that requires physical stamina for flexibility and jumping skills!

All you will need are packets of rubber bands. Players will need to intertwine the rubber bands to form a long rope.

Pick-Up Sticks

In pick-up sticks, colourful plastic sticks are scattered on a surface. Players would take turns to gingerly pry sticks loose from the pile, one by one, with steady hands without moving any of the other sticks. The game ends only when all sticks are claimed. The winner would be the player who collects the most sticks.

Other variations of the game include a point system. For example, picking up yellow sticks would award players 1 point, blue sticks are worth 3, red ones are worth 5 points, and the rarer black ones are worth 25, and so on. You can make up your own rules and play the game as your family deem fit as long as everyone is having fun!

You will need 41 wooden skewers, wax paper, and five colours of acrylic paint of your choice. The traditional colours include yellow, blue, red, green and black.

1. Simply paint the sticks according to your point system or colour scheme. For instance, paint one black (25 points), then five blue (3 points), 15 green (2 point) and 15 red (10 point) respectively.
2. Let the sticks dry completely on wax paper.
3. Paint a second coat if necessary.