The Zulu people had games which were played in the evening by the entire family. These games reinforced the bond within the family, entertained and whiled away time. These games had lessons which were indirectly imparted to the young ones who were being trained for the future. Games such as lullabies, folktales, riddles had lessons for the young ones.
A lullaby called “remain in the station”.Fraser (1996: 55) writes:“This poem helps children to appreciate home environment. Within the home they are safe and warm. Their comforts are taken care of by their parents and they can relax and rest”.
According to Fraser this lullaby taught children that there is no place like home. A home is safe, gives warmth and parents are everything to their children.
The lesson about lullabies and the absence thereof is evident these days by the growing number of street kids who no longer realise the importance of a home. The presence of televisions nowadays prohibits the teaching of young children about culture involving things they should do and not do.
Folktales are good games which while away time when everybody is finished doing the day’s work. Each tale had a lesson for the young ones to learn about life.
Riddles are also a good game to while away time with. It teaches children to think quickly and deeply. The adults would end up knowing who among the young ones is attentive and able to draw comparisons between things. Because of time constraints and the amount of work done, the researcher did not go into further discussions about these indoor games.
From a Masters dissertation by Victoria Mkhize for the School of IsiZulu, University of KwaZulu-Natal. Supervised by Professors P.J. Zungu and V. Prabhakaran.