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Games you played as a child

(63 Posts)
Rebi Wed 01-Oct-03 10:37:24

I was reminiscing (sp?!) with a friend the other day about when we were children and started talking about games we played. The thing was that we couldn't really remember all the details of the games and I thought how awful that we won't be able to pass them onto our children.

I thought it might be nice to put down the games I do remember and the rules, so that it might jog other Mumsnetter's memories. I would LOVE to hear others and I'm sure others would too!

So here are my contributions...

French Skipping - elastic put around 2 people's ankles/knees, etc. There were rhymes and a third person had to do specific moves. (God I'm no good at explaining things!) The only one I can remember (and we had hundreds I'm sure, we spent years doing this) "England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales. Inside, Outside, Donkey's Tails". The third person jumped either side of one side of elastic and then jumped to other. At 'Donkey's Tales' the third person jumped onto the elastic.

Cat's Cradle - haven't a notion how to do this now!


In the car this morning, I remembered a hand riddle along the lines of .. "Here is the church, and here is the steeple. Here is the preacher and here are all the people"!!! I know you end up with your hands clasped together waving all your fingers - will have to work the rest out though!

Anyway, highly intellectual stuff I know!!!! Anyone else have memories of games played in the "old days"!!!!!! (I'm sure everyone else will be able to explain rules a lot clearer than me)

btw the emotion I feel when I think of my childhood games is freedom! I remember long summers spend outside with all the children in the neighbourhood and it was amazing. I wouldn't let my children play in the street, there aren't any children on our street even. Just got me thinking, I wonder what their memories will be?

Oakmaiden Wed 01-Oct-03 10:40:17

British Bulldog - a very rough game, which when I played it consisted of mopst of the playground splitting into 2 teams. The first team linked arms and formed a barricade across the playground. The second team then had to run at the barricade and attempt to break through it to reach the other side of the playground. If you made it thorugh then you won. But it was a VERY rough game - I still carry the scars!!!!

doormat Wed 01-Oct-03 10:56:15

british bulldog
elastics ( elastics in between two people legs and jump in between them.
knick knock
truth, dare, kiss, promise

doormat Wed 01-Oct-03 10:56:37

jacks- those knuckle things

WSM Wed 01-Oct-03 10:56:47

Queenie, do any southerners or midlanders play this or is it a northern thing ? BTW can't remember how to play it !

bobsmum Wed 01-Oct-03 11:26:28

What were your versions for choosing someone to be "it"/"het'/"on"? In our school you were "it" for a game of tig.

We would yell "foot in" and stick our feet in a circle on the ground. Then:
eeny meeny miney mo
catch a tigger by the toe
if it squeals let it go
enny meeny miney mo

ibble obble black bobble
ibble obble out

it dit dog sh*t
you are not it
(only the rough girls used that one )

British bulldogs was banned at our school.

JanHR Wed 01-Oct-03 11:39:56

Our version of choosing who was "it"

My iother and your mother were hanging out the clothes.
Your mother hit my mother on the nose.
What colour was the blood (this person chose a colour) eg Purple
P U R P L E you are not it.

Northerner Wed 01-Oct-03 11:47:58

British Bulldog was banned at my scholl too. So was giving people the 'bumps' on their birthdays, as someone got their arm broken once!

I remember cats cradle but couldn't do it now. Also Ick Ack Ock, or paper, scissors and stone as some people call it.

We also used to do that hand slapping thingy (don't know what to call it) to rhymes, such as "not last night but the night before, 24 coppers came knocking at my door .......)

I used to love singing in unision on the coach on a school trip. "we're off, We're off, We're off in a motor car, 20 cops are after us we don't know where we are.........."

"Charlie had a pigeon, a pigeon, a pigeon........"

The teachers hated this last one cause it had a swear word in it!

Those were the days!

ThomCat Wed 01-Oct-03 11:55:29

Hi Rebi - haven't 'seen' you around for a while - hope all is well.

Like you my memories of childhood = freedom.
I'd go out straight after breakfast on my bike - a cool scrambler in dark blue - not a pink girly thing - I LOVED it. I'd ride round ALL day with a little pocket radio hung over the handlebars.

I lived in a close and there was a huge green in the middle and us kids all used to play there for hours - we’d play British Bull Dog, football and just general muck about over there.

French skipping

I also used to have this little club I formed with 2 other sisters who shared our back alley! There was a gap / passage between my garage and next-doors and we'd play in there. My dad was a butcher at the time and we'd sit on upturned meat slop buckets (!!!!!) and I'd set them tests from my encyclopaedias!!!! I was the eldest and the bossiest!! I also set up a lending library, basically because they had all the peanuts / Snoopy book that I wanted to read!

Then there were long imaginary games with friends, where I spent hours making fake money and we'd pretend we were catching a plane somewhere and then walk up and down the alley buying 'stuff'....!!!!

I also made a pretend shop and would collect old jars and plastic containers and then spend hours collecting puddle water / caterpillars / mud / grass etc etc and selling them in my shop - my dad had to throw the whole lot away as it began to stink the garden out!

I also spent a lot of time killing flying ants with a stick(!) and playing on my upturned flower pot stilts(!) etc.

All these activities took place outside.
When we were trapped in the house we played role-play type games - shops, games where we had to catch a bus and go to work, we'd wait in the hall and then 'catch' the stairs to work!!! The stairs were also a mountain and I'd tie a skipping rope to the top banister and pull myself up as well as throwing pencils all over the hall floor and pretending to collect firewood!!!!!!

OK - that's enough now!!!!!!

Rebi Wed 01-Oct-03 12:34:13

Hiya Thomcat - your post (as usual!) is beautiful!!! It has brought me back so well! How do you recall all those little details though? In my head I do, but the words just don't come! I haven't been around recently - September a crazy month - work in education, so work crazy and also settling ds back to school (all well now). Hope you, Dom and Lottie are keeping well. I have lost your e-mail somehow, so sorry for not being in touch. Had that White Trash night btw - a huge success!!!!!

I'm glad someone else has heard of 'French Skipping' aka elastics - noone else I met ever had and I wondered was it something local. Does anyone remember any other rhymes for it though. It was my favourite favourite game and I'd love to teach it to ds and eventually dd, also am a leader in Squirrels (4-5 year old future scouts) and hope to play it there.

We also had secret clubs (read too much Secret 7!) and we had passwords and tasks to complete every week.

There was a rock near us that was leaning against another and we called it the 'caves' - we use to set fires (without the flame mind you!) and pretend to camp out. Was desperate to stay there at night, but my parents were having none of it. On that note, I was always desperate to stay in the car overnight (don't know why?!) but was never allowed and felt very deprived!!!!!

My cousin and I use to set up home with our dolls and lots of disgustingly dirty rubbish we would find - old food cans and the like....

As you say, that's enough!!! Aghhhhhhhhhhhh, them were the days!!

ThomCat Wed 01-Oct-03 12:46:28

LOL - Rebi - made me feel quite dreamy!
Can't wait for Lottie and any future children to play those imaginary games - where very little happens and they go on for weeks!
I also used to push my blue cross 2nd hand dolls pram round the block saying to a friend '...and I said can I have half a pound of petaters (that potatoes to you and me these days, don't know why I used to go all cockney when I said it!!)and he gave me a pound and I said no love I wanted 'alf a pound'!!!!

I also ran away one. Packed the vanity case I still have and walked all the way to the end of the back alley and crouched down next to those horrid green arrows that collected fleas (?!) and waited for someone to come and find me. i was for ages (probably only 10 minutes in adult time!0 and then stropped back home and up the garden path - couldn't believe that no-one had missed me and it was all for nothing!!

Ohhhh, thanks for starting this tread - really enjoying this!!!!

Meet me on chat if and when you can as I'd LOVE to hear about the white trash night!!

SoupDragon Wed 01-Oct-03 12:49:30

There was a thread about Jacks a while ago and I found a great website which had all the rules for lots of games. I'll try to search it out again - it brought back so many memories!

I remember French skipping, "40 40 home" (and variations!) where It had to catch you before you got back to base, riding round for hours on my bike... Does anyone remember a bizarre game played against a wall with a tennis ball in a sock? There was a rhyme that went with it and you stood with your back to a wall, swinging the sock to bounce the ball off the wall. Really weird - all the girls at school played it for hours! Marbles used to crop up every year for a few weeks and then get banned when too many were thrown through windows and too many children started fishing about in the drains for lost marbles.

We used to have an indoor game called Lava Flow where we had to get from my bedroom (above the front door, all the way to the dining room at the back of the house downstairs without touching any of the red carpet we had in our hall/stairs/landing. We had lego fights across the stairwell, slid down the stairs on a teatray.... Sigh.

Bozza Wed 01-Oct-03 12:53:51

We used to have elastics but never called it french skipping. One thing we would do is start with it around the ankles, then move up to knees and then thighs.

I can't remember our choosing 'it' rhyme but it started "Ip, dip sky blue". Although there were others.

We used to play a form of hide and seek called "buzz-off".

janh Wed 01-Oct-03 12:56:47

ip, dip, sky, blue,
it shall not be you
not because you're dirty
not because you're clean(??)

and a bit more but I've forgotten. It's still around though, my DDs used to use it (and still do in the pub on a Friday night for all I know! )

SoupDragon Wed 01-Oct-03 12:58:46

This is the website with some rhymes and rules on it. No French or elastic skipping though

janh Wed 01-Oct-03 12:59:05

What about group skipping with an enormous long rope? You took it in turns to jump in and there could be 10 or more (depending on whose mum's washing line it was) all skipping together.

Northerner Wed 01-Oct-03 13:09:29

Thomcat - most of my memories are of us playing outside too. Straight after breakfast we'd be out along with the other kids from our street. Mum ar Dad used to call us in when it was bath time, (we'd have meals times in between ovbiously!)

We also lived in a close and had a huge piece of grass in the middle of our street. We used to play olympic games, and have running races around the green. I was Steve Cram!

Did you ever make perfume from rose petals? We'd collect the petals and put them in an old jam jar with some water and leave them in a dark warm place for weeks to let them ferment! And we used to wear the perfume thinking we smelt devine!

We also used to wear our Mum's high heeled shoes and push our dolls around in their prams, with sweetie cigerattes hanging from our mouths!

bobsmum Wed 01-Oct-03 13:12:07

We did double dutch skipping with two ropes - don't ask me how that worked. We played "Mother May I", 'Red Letter" and "Kiss, cuddle or Torture" (like kiss chase). If you got caught by a boy it was best ot choose "kiss", because "torture" was a knee up the bum which could be pretty vicious.

I had a basket on the front of my bike where I put my ET soft toy. I would don my red hooded top, throw a white blanket over ET's head and fly up and down the lane at the back of my house singing "na na nananana naa naa".

Me and my brother built a space station in his bedroom out of cardboard boxes and wendy house - we could teleport between his room and mine. If that broke down then my Barbies and his Action men would go on holiday together in my Sindy caravan. Sindy was fat and ugly so she had to be Barbie's maid. Only Barbie got to snog Action man. When b was given a keep fit Ken one Christmas, he was so unimpressed he dismembered him and buried his various body parts around our back garden along with a previously dismembered C3PO.

Oh I know there's more where all that came from. Long may this thread continue!

janh Wed 01-Oct-03 13:12:22

Two-balls - in the air or up the wall, I was hopeless, still am, some people did amazing things between throws and still kept control! Lots of rhymes for that too but can't remember one.

Making "perfume" with flower petals and water.

Throwing wet worm casts at the wall to see if they'd stick. (Lovely consistency, wormcasts - squidgy but smooth!)

Making mirrors with privet twigs, clean cobwebs and dew (an autumn morning activity).

Our school used to allow roller skates in the playground when the skating season came round (like the marbles season and the hula-hoop season and the skipping season, I never knew who decided to start a season but we would suddenly all have the same thing) and the skaters used to hold hands and form a tight spiral - then the outside end one would start skating away, the spiral unravelled and the one at the inside end would fly towards the school building at about 100mph. Scary.

There was a large triangular traffic island just down the road and we used to have a rounders season, on the island every night until it got dark. Somebody's teddybear used to provide the extra base IIRC!

Behind our houses was a small scrubby field known as "The Big Hill" although it was perfectly flat - it had lots of tall weeds and piles of stones etc, it was great for dens. They built garages on it after a few years - a great loss to the community.

stonybroke Wed 01-Oct-03 13:21:29

Just remembered another one!!! Charlie's Angels! I was Kelly!!! Oh how I loved running around with my gun!!!! I suppose a female version of cowboys and indians.

Oooo, just remembered a friend, at the end of the road, had a treehouse - oh how popular was she!!!!!

Thomcat - see you soon in Chat!!!

codswallop Wed 01-Oct-03 13:23:20

Mushing up rose petals to make perfume

ThomCat Wed 01-Oct-03 13:23:28

Ahh yes the v dangerous ball in the sock game!

janh - perfume - yes forget about that - thank you!

Stoneybroke - you had a mate with a treehouse.....oh waht bliss, so green with envy - would love that now!!

codswallop Wed 01-Oct-03 13:24:14

Must read thread properly!

Northerner Wed 01-Oct-03 13:26:37

Making 'pen knives' from lolley sticks.

Remember the days when lollies had jokes on the sticks?

I have fond memories of the old type roller skates - where you kept you shoes on with them. They were red and silver.

Cartwheels and handstands against the wall.

Twirly somersalt things around a bar at the park.

Knocky Knocky Ido (Knocking on peoples doors and running away!)

M2T Wed 01-Oct-03 13:26:43

Oh yes... those were the days. Here's my favourite skipping rhyme:

The wind, the wind,
the wind blows high
Out pops (name of person skipping) from the sky
She says she's going to die
If she can't find the boy with the golden eye.

He is handsome
She is pretty
He is the one from the Golden city,

(Shout name of the person skipping's love interest)


ONE.... TWO..... THREE etc etc until they trip up.

Anyone remember it??

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