Opie collection of children's games & songs

Recording of children demonstrating songs and discussing playground games with Iona Opie (part 2 of 2)

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  • Shelf mark


  • Subjects

    Children's games; Children's songs

  • Recording date


  • Is part of (Collection)

    Opie collection of children's games and songs

  • Recording locations

    Alton, Hampshire, England

  • Interviewers

    Opie, Iona (speaker, female)

  • Speakers

    unidentified (children)

  • Abstract

    Part 2 of 2. [00:00:00 - 00:32:39]. This recording continues to interview schoolgirls from Wootey's Junior School, Hampshire, as heard on the C898-04-01 recording. Throughout the interview, the children perform a selection of singing games; skipping songs; clapping songs; rhymes; football songs and television jingles. They also discuss jokes, the game 'Cats Cradle', marbles and a game based on imaginative role-play. The recording begins with one of the schoolgirls performing the singing game 'Yankee Doodle'. The girl explains to Iona that this song can be used for 'anything' [00:00:34 - 00:01:05]. The singing game 'In and Out the Dusty Bluebells' is also performed [00:08:15 - 00:08:50]. A few skipping songs are heard throughout the recording. These are 'Cross the Bible' [00:04:18 - 00:05:38] and 'Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear'. There is a sudden drop in volume at the start of this performance [00:03:22 - 00:06:17].  The children also perform the clapping song 'Em Pom Pee' [00:00:00 - 00:15:10].  The remainder of the recording contains performances of rhymes, word riddles, and football songs belonging to the schoolgirls. These include two versions of 'Georgie Best, Superstar' [00:01:12 - 00:01:36]; a version of 'We Break Up, We Break Down' [00:02:00 - 00:02:21]; a shortened variation of the clapping song 'When Susie Was a Baby' [00:01:52 - 00:02:00] and the rhyme 'My Boyfriend's Name is Tony' [00:02:22 - 00:02:45]. The children also sing an assortment of short, humorous rhymes. Particularly frequent are rhymes referring to characters named 'Fatty and Skinny' [00:08:57 - 09:34] and variations of a rhyme beginning with the line: 'I'm telling Mummy of you' [00:26:47 - 00:27:45]. Other rhymes recited by the schoolgirls refer to the character 'Humpty Dumpty' [00:12:16 - 00:12:32] and a rhyme one of the schoolgirls calls 'Sam, Sam, the Dirty Old Man' [00:11:54 - 00:12:12]. The schoolgirls perform two football songs. The first is sung by Chelsea supporters [00:05:44 - 00:06:01] and the other refers to the football player, Charlie George  [00:28:00 - 00:28:24]. The schoolgirls also ask to perform a song that they later reveal is from a television advert for pastels, although they cannot remember the brand of pastels. They sing: 'Put them pastels round Mum, put them pastels down, pastel picking Mama, pass those pastels round' [00:10:18 - 00:11:13]. The children also tell Iona a number of jokes learnt from friends and family [00:21:32 - 00:26:03]. Iona discusses with the children games that they play with 'playthings'. The children describe in detail to Iona how the game 'Cat's Cradle' is played and the different hand movements and actions that are required to play this [00:13:21 - 00:16:02]. They then discuss marbles and the different games that they can play with them. They tell Iona that they can only play 'marble hits' on their playground as there are no holes or drains to roll the marbles into. They briefly refer to terms employed when playing marbles. They explain that the term 'tips' is used when two marbles do not hit one another completely, but gently touch [00:16:03 - 00:21:28]. Lastly, the children describe a game based on high imaginative content rather than playthings. One of the schoolgirls explains to Iona that they often play 'war' in the long grass on the playground. They play it here as people can get 'blown up' and there are places to hide  [00:29:45 - 00:32:39].

  • Description

    Item notes: Recording of children demonstrating songs and discussing playground games with Iona Opie. Speakers' notes: Group of Alton schoolchildren

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