Parents with preschool children, adults who are happy to spend time with children, or preschool teachers ask, “What is play with rules?” can ask the question. Games with rules are games created by adults for children. There are steps to be followed and certain rules to be followed in order to play and complete the game.
Although children sometimes want to act independently, they actually like to be set limits and act according to the rules. A regulated and limited life makes them feel safe. Particularly, children at the age of play get excited with a sense of responsibility when they hear commands that guide them while starting the game and during the game.
According to Jean Piaget’s cognitive play levels, the highest play category is 7-12 years old. However, Lev Vygotsky put forward the idea that preschool children are more suitable and available to follow the rules of the game. According to him, the preschool period, when children develop their sense of cooperation and competition, is ideal for developing games with simple rules.
The rules determined in the games with rules are conveyed to the children before the game starts and it is stated that everyone has to comply with these rules. Games, in which rules are set to determine the winner and loser, improve the children’s sense of competition as well as their cooperation, teamwork and problem-solving skills.
The games with rules that children can play can be field games with the physical participation of children, or they can be played in the form of board games such as chess and checkers, which only progress mentally. There can be games with rules, which have been played for years and are played by many on the streets, at school, or in class by the teacher, or games with rules can be produced in any field or with any material.
Rule Game Examples
The following are examples of the most common rules games.
- Handkerchief Kapmaca : It is played in two groups. Each group takes a line and a person holding the handkerchief stands in the middle of it, equidistant from both teams. When the teacher gives a command, his turn runs and the first to take the handkerchief wins. After everyone rushes to the handkerchief in turn in the groups, the group with the most people snatching the handkerchief wins the game.
- I Sell Oil, I Sell Honey : The entire class faces each other, crouches on the ground and forms a circle. “I sell oil, I sell honey.” While the song is being sung by everyone, a person with a handkerchief runs outside the circle and leaves the handkerchief behind a person unnoticed. The person behind whom a handkerchief is left should notice the handkerchief without being included in the circle that leaves the handkerchief, and must lick it. If he is a midwife, the other person becomes a midwife, if he can’t, he starts running with a handkerchief as a midwife.
- Hot – Cold : An object is determined to be stored in the classroom, and a person is taken out and the determined object is stored anywhere in the classroom. When the hiding process is completed, the person who was taken out is taken to the class and asked to find the hidden object. He is given a clue to find the object with the warnings of “hot” coming closer to the object’s hiding place and “cold” warnings coming as he moves away from the object.
- Type : The class is divided into groups of twos and threes and each group is called a vegetable. The teacher starts to give a recipe for various dishes, and the people in the mentioned vegetable group stand up when they hear the name of the vegetable. When they hear the name of the variety, the whole class has to stand up. Those who stand up in the wrong vegetable or who do not stand up when they have to stand up are eliminated.
- Night – Day : While the children are sitting at their desks, when the teacher says “night”, they are asked to lie down with their faces on the table and to raise their heads when “day” is said. The wrong mover is eliminated.
The games played by children can change depending on their age and developmental period, as well as during the day. Generally, children like to have routines and are happy to play within the rules set for them. It should not be forgotten that the game, which is the best way to observe the personality that children develop and the skills they acquire, is an effective tool that opens the way for them to be active in life.