Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Off to Play Pooh Sticks

If you have ever read any of the classics Christopher Robin and Winnie-the-Pooh from Milne, you may know exactly what Pooh Sticks are all about. If not...

The game was first described in the book The House at Pooh Corner. 

" There was a broad track, almost as  broad  as  a  road,
leading  from  the  Outland  to the Forest, but before it could
come to the Forest, it had to cross this river.  So,  where  it
crossed,  there was a wooden bridge, almost as broad as a road,
with wooden rails on each side of it. Christopher  Robin  could
just  get  his chin on to the top rail, if he wanted to, but it
was more fun to stand on the bottom rail, so that he could lean
right over, and watch the river slipping  slowly  away  beneath
him. Pooh could get his chin on to the bottom rail he if wanted
to,  but it was more fun to lie down and get his head under it,
and watch the river slipping slowly away beneath him. And  this
was  the only way in which Piglet and Roo could watch the river
at all, because they were too small to reach the  bottom  rail.
So  they  would lie down and watch it . . . and it slipped away
very slowly, being in no hurry to get there.
        One day, when Pooh was walking towards this bridge,  he
was  trying  to  make  up  a  piece  of poetry about fir-cones,
because there they were, lying about on each side of  him,  and
he  felt  singy.  So he picked a fir-cone up, and looked at it,
and said to  himself,  "This  is  a  very  good  fir-cone,  and
something  ought  to  rhyme  to  it."  But he couldn't think of
anything. And then this came into his head suddenly:

                          Here is a myst'ry
                    About a little fir-tree.
                    Owl says it's his tree,
                    And Kanga says it's her tree.

        "Which doesn't make sense," said Pooh,  "because  Kanga
doesn't live in a tree."
        He  had  just come to the bridge; and not looking where
he was going, he  tripped  over  something,  and  the  fir-cone
jerked out of his paw into the river.
        "Bother,"  said  Pooh,  as  it floated slowly under the
bridge, and he went back to get another fir-cone  which  had  a
rhyme to it. But then he thought that he would just look at the
river instead, because it was a peaceful sort of day, so he lay
down and looked at it, and it slipped slowly away beneath him .
. . and suddenly, there was his fir-cone slipping away too.
        "That's  funny,"  said Pooh. "I dropped it on the other
side," said Pooh, "and it came out on this side! I wonder if it
would do it again?" And he went back for some more fir-cones.
        It did. It kept on doing it. Then he dropped two in  at
once, and leant over the bridge to see which of them would come
out  first; and one of them did; but as they were both the same
size, he didn't know if it was the one which he wanted to  win,
or  the  other one. So the next time he dropped one big one and
one little one, and the big one came out first, which was  what
he  had  said  it  would  do, and the little one came out last,
which was what he had said it would do, so he had won twice . .
. and when he went home for tea, he had won thirty-six and lost
twenty-eight, which meant that he was-- that he had--well,  you
take  twenty-eight  from  thirty-six,  and  that's what he was.
Instead of the other way round.
        And  that  was  the  beginning  of  the   game   called
Poohsticks,  which  Pooh invented, and which he and his friends
used to play on the edge of the Forest. But  they  played  with
sticks instead of fir-cones, because they were easier to mark."
~from Chapter 6 of The House at Pooh Corner

source BBC News

"The game of Poohsticks was originally played by Christopher Milne on a footbridge across a tributary of the River Medway in Posingford Wood, close to Cotchford Farm. The wooden bridge is a tourist attraction, and it has become traditional to play the game there using sticks gathered in nearby woodland. When the footbridge recently had to be replaced, the engineer designed a new structure based closely on the drawings of the bridge by E. H. Shepard in the original books, as the bridge did not originally appear as the artist drew it." ~source Wikipedia

We are a bit far from the bridge; however, we found one to play on ourselves...

Wishing you homeschool blessings,

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