Otedama is a traditional Japanese game for girls played with 5 small beanbags (or ojami.) The beanbags were often made by grandmothers with scraps of kimonos. Special otedama songs were used. You can make your own ojami and then use them to play the following skill games:
Make your own Japanese otedama
Scatter the five beanbags on the floor. Pick up one and toss it into the air. With the same hand, pick up another bag and transfer it to your other hand. Repeat until you have four beanbags in one hand, and catch the thrown beanbag in the other.
Scatter again. This time pick up two beanbags to transfer, and so on.
A simple game (similar to jacks):
Scatter the five beanbags on the floor. Pick up one and toss it into the air. With the same hand, pick up another bag and catch the falling one. Repeat until all the beanbags are picked up. Start again, but this time pick up two bags at each toss, then three bags, then four bags.
Finally, toss five beanbags into the air and catch as many as you can on the back of the same hand. Flip the bags that you caught into the air again and catch as many as you can in the palm of same hand.
Slightly more difficult:
Throw one beanbag up into the air. With the other hand, pick up a beanbag and wedge it between the fingers of the throwing hand, in time to catch the original beanbag. Throw again, and wedge another. Continue until 4 beanbags are wedged and the thrown beanbag is caught again.
Back of the hand:
Try throwing up one beanbag, then catching it on the back of the hand. Throw it up from the back of the hand, and catch again. Can you toss it from the back of one hand to the other hand? And back?
Try this "three shower otedama" - click on the link to watch the animation
A grandmother demonstrates otedama juggling to her granddaughter!
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