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

    Driffield, Yorkshire, Market Weighton, Yorkshire and Bedford, England

  • Interviewers

    Opie, Iona (speaker, female)

  • Speakers

    unidentified (children)

  • Abstract

    Part 2 of 2. [00:00:00 - 00:22:25] This recording, made in Bedford, 1975, contains an interview with a small group of schoolgirls who perform numerous skipping songs and a small selection of clapping and counting out rhymes. The recording begins with the children demonstrating a counting out rhyme that they use on the playground. They sing: 'number one, racing car, how many petrols did you lose?' [00:00:00 - 00:00:37]. Once this rhyme has finished, the children can then be heard shouting 'no ender' to each other. It is revealed that the last two children to shout this must then be the 'enders' and turn the rope for the other girls while they skip. Having decided this, they then begin to perform several skipping songs. These are: 'Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear' [00:00:37 - 00:01:33]; 'Cowboy Joe of Mexico' [00:01:38 - 00:02:07]; 'There's Someone in the Bed' [recorded by the Opies as 'There's Someone Under the Bed'] [00:02:08 - 00:03:07]; 'Bluebells, Cockleshells' [00:03:09 - 00:04:06] and [00:06:33 - 00:07:06]; 'High, Low, Swinging, Dolly, Pepper' [00:04:23 - 00:04:48]; 'I'm a Little Dutch Girl Dressed in Blue' [00:04:49 - 00:05:09]; 'Mother's in the Kitchen' [00:05:11 - 00:05:51]; 'I'm a Little Bumper Car' [00:05:55 - 00:06:32]; 'I Know a Nikkie Boy' [also recorded by the Opie's as 'I Know a Nigger Boy'] [00:07:52 - 00:12:07]; 'Colours' [00:12:08 - 00:14:10] and 'Skip to m'Lou' [00:14:11 - 00:16:38]. The children then perform two clapping games that they play on their playground. These are 'When Susie Was a Baby' [00:17:11 - 00:18:50] and 'Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang'; a game that the schoolgirls explain they made up themselves [00:19:49 - 00:22:08]. The recording ends with Iona making a note to herself that she must not call a certain type of song 'singing games', but must refer to them as 'ring' or 'line' games. This is because when she asked the children to perform singing games, they performed skipping songs as these included an element of singing.

  • Description

    Item notes: Recording of children demonstrating songs and discussing playground games with Iona Opie. Speakers' notes: Group of Driffield, Market Weighton and Bedford schoolchildren

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