Are you looking looking for board games that are fun and educational for your kids? These geography games are outstanding to help kids learn about different countries, practice their map skills, and have fun with their family and friends.
A Tegre (mancala-type) game board we bought near Dorze, Ethiopia
When I was a teenager, my parents bought my little brother and sister a game called Mancala: “one of the oldest board games from Africa,” claimed the box. Mancala is the name that anthropologists have given to a type of board game that is played throughout Africa, and some places in Asia (from The Complete Mancala Games Book by Larry Russ). They are usually made of wood that have various numbers of holes carved in them. Seeds, beans, or stones are moved around according to different rules, and victory is achieved when one player has captured all of the seeds.
The boys in Dorze who taught us to play Tegre
Fast-forward to 2008, and my husband and I were traveling in southern Ethiopia. In a small village called Dorze we became friends with a group of boys who were interested in showing us their ping-pong table, their instruments, and their “Tegre” game. This was like the mancala game I had when I was younger! With deft hands and broken English, the boys explained how to play, while quickly scooping up seeds and depositing them around the board. There are many ways to play, but here are the rules they explained to us, instructions for an easy-to-make game board, and even an on-line mancala game to try.