Family Time Calendar: Feather Fun

Celebrate the harvest season with a game that uses corn husks! Many years ago, Native American Indian children spent hours playing with handmade pokean, sort of like a modern-day hacky sack or badminton. Pokean is a fine alternative to "Pokeman" -- it gets kids outside and away from electronic games!

What you'll need:

  • About four dried corn husks (save the husks from fresh corn and let them dry for a day or so) or tamale wrappers from the supermarket
  • Yarn or twine
  • Feathers
  • Glue
  • Several colorful pony beads

 

What you'll do:

If the corn husks are very dry, soak them in water for a few minutes. Overlap two husks on the table to form an X shape. Roll up another husk to create a small ball, about the size of a large gumball. Place the small ball in the center of the X and gather up the husks to surround the ball. Pinch them together tightly and wind yarn above the ball to hold it together. Leave a few inches of yarn at the end, and tie on several pony beads, if desired.

Dip the ends of several feathers into glue and stick them into the top of the pokean, as deep as they can go. Let dry.

To play, toss the pokean into the air using the palm of your hand. See how long the kids can keep it aloft!

For a simpler version, toss a feather into the air and allow them to use only their breath to keep it aloft -- no hands allowed! Or two players can try to volley one feather between them using only their breath.

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