The only two games I can think of are Hide-and-Seek (jugando a la escondida) and Tag (jugando a tope) - same as in the U.S.
But the kids do make a lot of their toys. Things like Fu Fu's, which is a flattened bottle cap with a hole in the middle, which is threaded onto a double string. The string is then spun and twisted and pulled taut, and the Fu Fu spins around, much to everyone's delight.
What is the name of the tire, stick, and piece of water bottle device?
When I was there, besides baseball and basketball, hacky sac was widely played, as well as in the campos, the stick and tire game.
THere is a game where kids, all ages - 3 to 23, stand in a circle holding hands and there is one person in a circle who recites a poem about amor, and they choose someone and gives them a kiss on the cheek and that person goes in the centre and it goes all over again. Really cute. Does anyone know it?
There is another one, where everyone again stands in a circle with one person in the middle and they sing a song and it goes asi, asi, asi, asi, asi. Don't know what that is called either:bored:
Most of the games are pretty common, lots of skipping, lots of clapping games with different rhymes, card games, pretty similar to ours.
Sorry, I don't know if this has helped at all!
Ooooh...that game where you kiss the person on the cheek? Isn't that called "La Cadena", or something like that? I've played that but with a bag with bits of paper in it and on the bits of paper it will say things like "the best looking" or "the best dancer" and you have to choose who and then give them a kiss on the cheek, and then it's that person's turn.
Oh my God, Jane J, the tire with the stick and the water jug thing!!! That took me back to my days working in the orphanage... I had forgot about it, but certain boys there literally play it all day long.
That is one thing your son should mention, Shari, that kids in the DR are incredibly resourceful, it always shocks me how they make so many toys out of things they find around, when so many US kids I know are flooded with toys from the toy store and wouldn't be able to make anything if their life depended on it.
Hacky sac is also a big thing... with a plastic bag filled with rocks usually. They are really good at it!
Shari, Bugsey34 makes a very important point. The commercial games, such as board games, that are popular with children in the US are either not available here or are out of financial reach of a large majority of the children. You don't find the large departments of children's games and toys that are common in the US.
So the kids make their toys out of scraps and castoffs, and seem to be at least as entertained with them as are children in the US with their expensive toys.
At Christmas time there are lots of toys sold, mostly cheap plastic guns, cars and dolls. I doubt that they last very long, given their poor quality. But those homemade items survive, and are easily replaced as needed.
This same characteristic continues into adult hood. Dominicans keep things runing long after it would have been discarded in the US. If parts are no longer available, there are many places to get them fabricated. But it is rare to find a vehicle or machine sent to the junk heap unless it is in extremely bad shape.
Baseball for the street.
1) 1 broomstick or something similar
2) Several caps from 5 gal water bottles.
Caps are frizzbied at batter who tries to bat them with stick...rest is like stickball
1) 2 old license plates (placas in Spanish), bent about two inches in from each end making a very wide (_______) sort of shape
2) two bats of anything you want.
3) Rubber ball
Game is essentially cricket without the English formality. The plaquitas are placed about 40'apart.
Played in the street between teams of 2. The offensive side defends the plaquitas with the bats and the defensive team trys to knock one down for an 'out" the pitcher throws from about 40 feet away. When the ball is hit the two batsmen run back and forthSwitching places, really, until the ball in back in play and in danger of toppling the plate. Placing the bat on the ground by the placa signifies "safe" . three outs to a side..play til you drop...
Trucks out of oil bottles....
From my youth in Guatemala:
this is like the cup and ball on a string toy but made by hand from wooden thread spools.
Piece of broken glass-triangular shape
Wooden spool of thread-empty
Some good string.
Old lead pencil:
thin piece of wood-like two Popcickle(?) sticks glued together and rounded off.. a twig from a good tree serves just as well.
On one end of the spool, the glass is twisted and twisted making a V shaped cavity in the base of the spool. This is made as wide and as deep as possible. It needs to be sanded smooth. The other end of the spool is sanded off until nearly , but not, flush with the center.
About a 1/4" piece of the old lead pencil is cut off and the lead taken out.
The good string is passed thru the hollowed out piece of pencil and knotted real big so it won't come out. This is then fitted into the other end of the spool with the string tailing out. There should be 5 and 1/2 turns around the spool between the end of the stick and the stoppered thread.
The trick is to get the spool to flip up onto the stick. Almost the reverse of the store bought toy.
Those are awesome references to games.
Like others have said Bugsey34 has a very good point about kids making due with what they have. Often with the kids, I went bowling! We set up some empty pear and orange juice cans, got a rock and bowled away!!