Laro ng lahi: How to play patintero, tumbang preso and more!

Have you forgotten how to play your favorite laro ng lahi games? Don't worry, we've got the rules to patintero, tumbang preso and more. Check them out now!

Our laro ng lahi reflect the ingenuity of the Filipino, as children make use of mundane things like sticks, stones and slippers to produce friendly competition among peers.

These laro ng lahi challenge a child’s tactical intellect and teach a multitude of values. It teaches them that life is bound by rules – and if they break them, they have to pay the price. It also teaches the importance of meaningful strategy, planning ahead, teamwork and communication.

But for the most part, our laro ng lahi are there for the laughs, excitement and sheer fun.

How do you play laro ng lahi games?

1. Patintero

laro ng lahi
Form 2 teams with equal number of players, at least 2 to 3 each. Each team is either a free-roamer or a tagger.

As a free-roamer, your objective is to cross a gauntlet of parallel – sometimes, even perpendicular – lines of taggers as many times as you can. If you’re tagged, you wait on the sidelines until the next round comes. On that next turn, you’ll be the tagger out for revenge!

As a free-roamer, your objective is to cross a gauntlet of parallel – sometimes, even perpendicular – lines of taggers as many times as you can. If you’re tagged, you wait on the sidelines until the next round comes. On that next turn, you’ll be the tagger out for revenge!

2. Tumbang Preso

laro ng lahi
Tumbang preso means “fallen prisoner.” To play, a tin can is set upright on the ground inside a drawn circle. The “it” will protect the can from the other players, who are standing behind a line about 2 meters away and will strike it down using their rubber slippers.

Only when the can is down can players retrieve their thrown flip-flops without getting tagged by the “it.” If a player is tagged while the can is upright and in its circle, that person becomes the new “it.”

3. Agawan Base

laro ng lahi
Similar to the game Capture the Flag, the goal of Agawan Base is to take over the other team’s base without getting captured.

To begin, two teams are each assigned a base, like a lamppost or a tree. One person guards the base and catches by tagging any approaching opponent.

Captured players stay at the opponents’ base, forming a line with linked hands and outstretched arms. All of them may be saved by a free teammate if he or she touches the line they’ve formed.

A base is captured when any of its free opponents touches it.

4. Langit Lupa

laro ng lahi
In choosing who’s “it” in this game of tag with a twist, kids chant: “Langit, lupa, impyerno / Im-im-impyerno / Saksak puso, tulo ang dugo / Patay, buhay / Alis ka na diyan!” while pointing at players one at a time with each syllable. The last syllable determines who’s “it.”

Langit-lupa means “heaven-earth.” So the “it,” who’s “on earth,” cannot tag anybody “in heaven.” The game hones the players’ resourcefulness as they scramble to find higher ground by standing on a bench or climbing a tree.

Players can only stay “in heaven” for 10 seconds. After which, they come down to “earth” where the “it” can chase and tag the next “it.”

5. Siato

laro ng lahi
A short stick about 6-8 inches long is placed on top of a dug hole. The objective is to hit the short stick with a longer stick that’s about a foot long as far as you can in 3 turns.

A turn is made up of 2 strikes: one upward strike to get the short stick into the air and another strike while the stick is in mid-air to make it fly forward.

The loser of the game shouts, “Siato!” while running back to the starting point.

For a quick review of the most popular laro ng lahi, check out this video from the People's Television Network (PTV): http://youtu.be/u1X-q6DHDXM.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: JUSTIN POSADAS

Illustrations by Jesse James Rafael

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