Type of game:
Locomotion Game
Character of the game:
Non-Competitive
Country of origin:
France
Aim of the game:
A blindfolded person tries to catch other players and guess who they are.
Number of players:
Multi Player
3-15
Age
5 +
Difficulty:
Easy
Area of play:
Indoor or outdoor free space
Indoor Outdoor
Equipment

A scarf
Motor skills
Balance Speed Endurance
Social skills
Cooperation Communication
Cognitive skills
Memory Development
equipment
Background
“Colin Maillard” is an ancient game that traces back to Greece 2000 years ago. It has spread all over the world and is popular with adults as well as children. The origin of the name of its French version is obscure. Michel Tournier, in his book “Le Vent Paraclet” (1979), suggests that Colin was a figure from the Nordic mythology, a warrior coming from Flanders that used to fight with a mallet (“Maillet”) and, because of an injury that turned him blind, had to be guided by a valet to help him continue the fight in the battlefield. It could also be that Colin was a man that fought with a mallet and got blind during a Medieval battle against the French Lord of Leuven. Variations of “Colin Maillard” are called “Blindman’s buff” in Great Britain, “Blindekuh” in Germany, “Blindbock” in Spain, “Kola onye tara gi okpo” in Nigeria, etc.
Sources:
  1. CDDP Gers
  2. Tournier M. (1979), “Le Vent Paraclet”, Coll. Folio, Paris: Gallimard.
  3. Réseau Canopé / CNDP
  4. Encyclopaedia Britannica
Set up:
Select an area of play suitable to the number of players (appropriate size). One player is chosen randomly to be “Colin Maillard” (the chaser) and is blindfolded with a scarf.
Rules
“Colin Maillard” turns three times around while the other players spread on the area of play. Once “Colin Maillard” stands still, the other players start to provoke her/him either by moving, shouting, singing, or even tagging her/him (without pushing) to start a chase. They must, however, avoid being caught at the same time. Colin Maillard must manage to catch a player and guess the identity of that player. The face of the player can be touched to help with recognition. If the identity is correctly guessed, the player who is revealed becomes the new “Colin Maillard” and the game starts again. If not, the player that was caught is released and Colin Maillard must start a new chase.
When the blindfolded Colin Maillard approaches an obstacle or moves too far out of the area of play, other players must provide a warning by shouting “Dare-devil!”
Teaching Styles:
  • Provide clear and simple instruction.
  • Use a buddy system for the players who are being chased.
  • For players with visual impairments, invite them to practice identifying each player before starting.
  • Safety instructions to be tailored to the environment and participants playing the game.
Rules:
  • Disregard the rule stating that the Chaser must identify the captured person.
  • Players that are caught by the Chaser become an additional Chaser and Chasers link arms.
  • Set a time limit for the Chaser time.
  • All players are blindfolded.
  • Create safe zones for players where they can rest temporarily.  
Environment:
  • Ensure the indoor/outdoor playing area has a smooth surface and is free of obstacles.
  • Increase/decrease the playing area (e.g. bigger to avoid capture, smaller to help the Chaser capture a player).
Equipment:
  • Use audible equipment e.g. the Chaser has a bell.
Background
“Colin Maillard” is an ancient game that traces back to Greece 2000 years ago. It has spread all over the world and is popular with adults as well as children. The origin of the name of its French version is obscure. Michel Tournier, in his book “Le Vent Paraclet” (1979), suggests that Colin was a figure from the Nordic mythology, a warrior coming from Flanders that used to fight with a mallet (“Maillet”) and, because of an injury that turned him blind, had to be guided by a valet to help him continue the fight in the battlefield. It could also be that Colin was a man that fought with a mallet and got blind during a Medieval battle against the French Lord of Leuven. Variations of “Colin Maillard” are called “Blindman’s buff” in Great Britain, “Blindekuh” in Germany, “Blindbock” in Spain, “Kola onye tara gi okpo” in Nigeria, etc.
Sources:
  1. CDDP Gers
  2. Tournier M. (1979), “Le Vent Paraclet”, Coll. Folio, Paris: Gallimard.
  3. Réseau Canopé / CNDP
  4. Encyclopaedia Britannica