Canica is the Spanish word for 'marbles', a game which is played and loved by children around the world. This particular marble game is a favourite from the South American country of Chile.

Age: All ages

No. of players: 3 or more

Equipment: A shoebox (or similar) with four doors of different sizes cut out on one side of the box (write a number 1, 2, 3 or 4 over each door - the largest door gets the lowest number and the smallest door gets the highest number); a bag of marbles

Time: 10+ minutes

Aim: To be the player with the most marbles at the end of the game.

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1. To play the game, one player is chosen as the owner. He sits near the shoe box with a full bag of marbles.

Marbles box

2. The other players sit about two metres (6-7 feet) away from the shoebox and are given 5 marbles each.

3. Players take it in turn shooting one marble at a time, aiming to get the marble into one of the doors.

4. If the marble rolls into a door of the shoebox, the owner must give that player as many marbles as are written above the door which the marble rolled through. If the marble does not roll through a door, then the owner keeps the rolled marble.

5. If a player runs out of marbles, he is out of the game.

6. The game finishes when the owner runs out of marbles. The winner is the player with the most marbles at the end of the game.

Source: Adapted from "Games Around the World" UNICEF New York

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