After their morning academic programs, children in the Krishna conscious Gurukula schools engage in devotional activities such as cooking, gardening, playing musical instruments, singing, acting, and sewing. Sometimes their time is free and unstructured, and they play on swings, slides, monkey bars, or bicycles. At other times the children play organized games, such as those in this book, with themes from scripture, geared for exercise and remembrance of Lord Krishna.
In many games a player is chosen to lead, tag the others, find them when they hide, or play some other special role. To choose a leader, the players stand in a circle while one child recites the Hare Krishna mantra. For each word of the mantra he points at a different child in the order in which they stand in the circle. He can start with any child in the circle but should include himself when pointing. Whomever he points at when saying the last word of the mantra is the leader.
For some games two teams must be formed. One way to do this is to have everyone stand in a line and count off. The first player in the line number. The odd numbers make up one team, and the even numbers are the other. Another way is to line up and say the Hare Krishna mantra instead of numbers. All the players who say Hare form a team, and all those who say Krishna or Rama form the other.
For some games a child has to turn back to the others and close his eyes, giving the players enough time to hide. While waiting, he can either count to fifty or one hundred, or recite five or ten Hare Krishna mantras, keeping track of the number on his fingers.
Taken from "The Book of Krishna Conscious Games - Popular Games adapted for devotee Children"
Compiled by Jyotirmayi-devi dasi, Moksarupa-devi dasi, Mahavegavati-devi dasi, Krsna-kumari-devu dasi
Photos by Tilak-devi dasi, Yogesvara dasa