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Peru: Chasquis Relay Race

In ancient Peru, special messengers called “Chasquis” delivered important messages from place to place on foot. Your Little Explorers can play the role of a Chasquis in this relay race game with a “Telephone” twist!!


This game requires at least three people so if you are exploring from home, invite some siblings, adults, or friends to play along! You will also need a safe space to run - even if it’s doing laps around the house.


Decide the route of your “course.” Also, decide what order players will run in. Runner 1 will come up with a simple message to relay to the next player. When the race starts, Runner 1 must complete a lap around the course while Runner 2 waits at the finish line. When Runner 1 meets Runner 2 at the finish line, they must run together until Runner 1 passes the message along to Runner 2. Then Runner 2 does the same thing with Runner 3 at the end of his or her lap. When Runner 3 finishes the race, see if the message is the same as it was in the beginning. (Make sure no one is stopping when they relay the message!)

Talk About It:

In ancient Peru, people didn’t have telephones or the internet. When there was important news, it was carried from place to place by “Chasquis” - special messengers who ran as fast as they could until they met the next runner that would take the message on further. They didn’t even stop running to give the message to the next person! Today, we are going to see what it might have been like to have this very important job!

What did you think of that game? Was it difficult to remember the message while you were running as fast as you could? What was it like trying to run together and give someone else the message at the same time? Our race was short, but the real Chasquis could run for miles and miles in the sun. How do you think it would be different for them than it was today for us?

Take It Further:

This game can be easily adapted for a larger group with teams of multiple players. The more players you have, the more difficult it will be for the message to stay the same!


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