Before books were common children learned to read from horn books. A horn book has a piece of velum or paper with an alphabet, numbers, a phrase and/or a biblical passage. The horn was used to cover the velum or paper to make the text last longer. Plastic had not been invented. I made these simple horn books from luan and a laminated alphabet. I had great visions of teaching my child to read or at least recognize his name with it. What really happen was the horn book was used with the shuttle cock game. A problem that happened in the Middle Ages as well.
Shuttle cock is a children’s game that involves hitting a cock or bird with a paddle. The point is too keep the bird up in the air and not let it touch the ground. It is harder than it looks, especially when your ball is not round. The feathers add an other layer of challenge to hitting the bird. However brightly color feathers make the bird much easier to find in the grass. This is a fairly popular game for children.
These two toys have been lifesavers. The green book is a children’s girdle book. It has an easily replaceable notebook, a spot to tuck stickers and pockets sewn for crayons. I replace the crayons for almost every event. The blue box is a scribal box made for a child. It is stocked with coloring books, stickers and other quiet court toys.
My boys love to carry a pilgrims bag. It leaves their hands free to pick up rocks and other great treasure to put in the bags. Often times the bags are full of balls, girdle books or kadamas (a modern ball and cup toy.) When I made the bags I made them a little on the large size with a really long strap. I have let the strap out on the bags once already. I also sew site tokens to the bags, sometimes that even gets done at the event.