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MOTAT

Losing your marbles?

Those marbles you might have lying around somewhere aren’t just fun to lose under the fridge. They are brilliant for lots of games as well. Here’s a couple of quick ideas to get you rolling.

Marble Races

If you’ve got a car racing track like Hot Wheels, you can set this up to run around your room, maybe out the hall. How about down the stairs? You could do it outside too. Now instead of sending cars down it race your marbles. They go faster, further and keep rolling for aaages on the flat.

And when you’re ready to really step it up. Check out Marbula One. The pinnacle of Marble Racing

Marble Olympics

Or how about making a true test of your marbles skill and endurance and hold a Marble Olympics. You and your friends could each host an event at your own house. Video it to share or stream it to each other live.

“Marbles” The Game

There is an actual game kids used to play with these things and before you go thinking this is old and boring – read on because Marbles – the actual game – is ruthless!

kids playing marbles on the floor in their bedroom
Photo by @darby via Twenty20

YOU WILL NEED:

· A circle 1 – 2 meters across (depending on how difficult you want it to be!)

· A collection of marbles – it’s good to have one that is larger than the others

HOW TO PLAY:

· Draw your circle on the ground in chalk or make one out of string if you’re indoors (hint – tape it to the floor so it stays in place).

· Choose your shooter marble- this should be the largest marble in your pack.

· Put 5 -10 marbles in the centre of the ring.

· When it’s your turn, kneel outside the ring and flick your shooter marble out of your fist with your thumb, aiming to hit many marbles out of the ring.

· Keep the marbles you knock out and have another turn.

· If you don’t knock any marbles out of the ring, leave your shooter marble in the ring and wait your turn while the other players play.

· Continue until the ring is empty.

· The winner has the most marbles at the end of the game. Easy!

MOTAT’s Marbles

Marbles has been played for thousands of years but it was especially popular at the start of the 20th century. In our collection at MOTAT we have a clay set from the 1940s

Collection of clay marbles from the 1940s
4 Circa 1940. Bag of Marbles, 1972.11.5. The Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT).