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Yulunga: jillora

Spinning balls or tops of various kinds were used as an amusement by Aboriginal people in most parts of Australia and by Torres Strait Islanders. The spin-ball used in the northwest central districts of Queensland was a round ball of about 2 to 3 centimetres in diameter. It was made of lime, ashes, sand, clay and sometimes ...

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Yulunga: diyari koolchee

This ball-throwing and hitting game was played by the Diyari people from near Lake Eyre in South Australia. The balls were called koolchee. The aim of the activity is to roll a ball to rebound off a wall in order to hit a skittle. The Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games resource was developed to provide all Australians ...

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Yulunga: koolchee

This ball-throwing and hitting game was played by the Diyari people from near Lake Eyre in South Australia. The balls were called koolchee. The balls used were as round as possible and were usually about 8–10 centimetres in diameter. Gypsum, sandstone, mud, or almost any material that was easy to work was used to make the ...

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Yulunga: walbiri

A memory-testing game was played by the Walbiri children of central Australia. Players were required to recall sand-drawing maps of the locality after watching for a short time. This was a game that helped the children remember and identify the surrounding topography. This is a memory-testing game using various objects. ...

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Yulunga: taktyerra

In most parts of Australia the young boys (and sometimes girls) played mock combat games for enjoyment and as a practice for adult life. Toy spears were made from thin, light sticks, or else from grasses, reeds and rushes. The spears were held at their lighter ends and thrown either with the hand or with a toy woomera (throwing ...

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Yulunga: wadai

In the 1890s, children in parts of the Torres Strait were observed playing a ball-catching game in the water called udai (wadai) or doamadiai. This is a throwing-and-catching game in which players compete for possession of a ball. The versions outlined here use the original water game (udai) and adapt it for use on land. ...

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Yulunga: kwatye

Water games and contests were played in all areas of Australia. In some parts of central Australia a frequent expression of ‘opposition’ between the generation groupings in a camp takes the form of light-hearted abuse and spectacular waterthrowing battles. The aim of the activity was to saturate certain kin in the opposite ...

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Yulunga: marutchi

Marutchi or black swan was a water game played by the Jagara (or Jagera) people in the Brisbane area. It was often played among inhabitants from different areas. Some of the players were very clever and could avoid being caught. If a player became tired he or she could be replaced by another player. Spectators were not ...

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Yulunga: inkanyi

Although not a universal activity, athletic events were common. In a part of central Australia the children would have running races together. The race was a cooperative effort. According to age, running speed and fitness levels, runners started at different distances and all players attempted to finish together. This activity ...

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Yulunga: ngarinbarm

The swimming game of ngarinbarm (turtle) was played by the Jagara (Jagera) people in lagoons around the Brisbane area. Players in a canoe chase and attempt to catch a ngarinbarm. The players who are the turtles swim underwater to avoid capture. The players in the canoe may enter the water to touch the turtles if they are ...

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Yulunga: pulukwanti

The Aboriginal people played a variety of water games and a common activity was to dive into the water. These are activities associated with diving into the water. The Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games resource was developed to provide all Australians with a greater understanding and appreciation of Indigenous culture ...

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Yulunga: turi turi

In the northwest-central area of Queensland, the Maidhargari children made a type of skippingrope (turi turi) from the long roots of the Bauhinia (Queensland bean tree), or white-gum, which grew near the water’s edge. A vine rope was used in the same way by Wogadj children on the Daly River in the Northern Territory. This ...

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Yulunga: ngor-go

A form of spin-ball was played among the lower Tully River people. The spinner was made out of a gourd of the Benincasa vacua. This game was played by women more often than men. It was known among the Mallanpara people of north Queensland as ngor-go, after the name of the gourd used. This activity comprises making and playing ...

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Yulunga: kamai

Using a length of twine, adult women and young children of both genders often amused themselves for hours at a time with cat’s cradle (string-figure games). These were played almost everywhere throughout Australia and also in the Torres Strait. In some areas older boys and adult men also played these games. Elaborate figures ...

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Yulunga: Tur-dur-er-rin

The lessons learned around the camp fire were often required for survival. Tur-dur-er-rin, war-rok-minder- neit, or work-ern-der-eit, was a wrestling game from Victoria in which the most skilful, or perhaps the strongest, proved to be the winner. The old men and women and the children acted as spectators and sat down around ...

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Yulunga: boomerang

Boomerang throwing was a popular activity with Aboriginal groups in many parts of Australia. While the fighting boomerang was often used as a toy, the returning boomerang implement was often constructed solely and especially for purposes of sport and amusement. The toy, or returning boomerang, was usually thrown only by ...

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Yulunga: kalkadoon kee'an

In areas of north Queensland, a game of throwing skill was played. A large bone, such as an emu shinbone (with twine attached to it) was thrown over a net (used to catch emus) into a pit or hole. Considering the distance to the hole, great skill was required to correctly aim the bone and ensure that it did not touch the ...

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Yulunga: parndo

This ball game was played by Aboriginal people in the vicinity of Adelaide (Kaurna language) in South Australia. The parndo (ball) was made with a piece of possum skin and was fairly flat in shape. This is a game of kicking the ball high into the air and attempting to catch it. The Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games ...

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Yulunga: pirbu-pirbu

In north Queensland a cross-boomerang was made from the wood of the cluster fig tree (Ficus chretiodes). To the Mallanpara people of the Tully area it was known as pirbu-pirbu. This is an indoor activity using toy crossboomerangs made from a foam material. The Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games resource was developed ...

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Yulunga: nanyima

Catch-ball games were played in many places. The balls used were made of seeds, stones, clay, seaweed, grass, hair-string and stuffed fur. In one game a player tosses a stone (ball) over his or her shoulder to a number of players and attempts to guess who caught the stone. This activity is suitable for younger players. ...