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

    Liss, Hampshire, England

  • Interviewers

    Opie, Iona (speaker, female)

  • Speakers

    unidentified (children)

  • Abstract

    Part 2 of 2. [00:00:00 - 00:33:06] This recording continues on immediately from the C898-20-01 recording as Iona Opie continues to discuss with Liss schoolgirls their singing games, ball game songs and rhymes. The recording begins with two schoolgirls performing the singing game 'I'm Shirley Temple'. After they have performed this, Iona asks the children: 'do you know who Shirley Temple is?' One of the girls responds: 'Oh I know! Paul Temple's wife?' Iona then asks if they know who 'Betty Grable' is as they also make reference to her in  this song. Again, the children do not know and explain that they never consider who these people may be [00:00:00 - 00:05:32]. The children then go on to sing 'I'm a Little Indian' [00:05:34 - 00:05:58], 'My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean' [00:29:48 - 00:31:41] and 'I'm a Little Dutch Girl' [00:12:47 - 00:17:27]. The girls are asked if they watch much television and they explain that they do watch a lot. Their 'best' programmes are 'Blue Peter' and 'Wacky Races'. Iona then talks with a girl who has a book of games that belongs to her mother. The book contains singing games and the girl explains that she knows most of these. They sing games such as 'My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean' and 'Me and My Teddy Bear' [00:17:30 - 00:19:07]. Throughout the recording, Iona and the schoolgirls discuss how children learn new games and Iona asks if the children can remember how they learnt any recent games. The children explain that they learnt a few recent games at Brownies and Iona asks if Brownie games remain 'separate' and are just played at Brownies. The children decide that they can also be played outside of Brownies too [00:19:08 - 00:20:12]. Iona asks the schoolgirls if they play any ball games and they perform the ball game rhyme 'One, Two, Three A'Lairy' [00:05:59 - 00:06:20] and explain a ball game they play called 'Forget Me Not' [00:06:21 -00:12:46]. Two skipping songs are also performed. These are 'I'm a Little Bumper Car' [00:20:13 - 00:21:21] and 'Cowboy Joe of Mexico' [00:21:22 - 00:23:20]. [00:23:20 -  00:25:04] The schoolgirls then discuss poetry that they have learnt in school. One girl likes the poems 'Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum' and 'Who Killed Cock Robin?' The children then recite the latter poem. Other rhymes are then recited e.g. 'teasing' rhymes such as 'I'm telling Miss on you, you dirty Kangaroo'. One girl, then performs a rhyme taught to her by her Nanny. She chants: 'my mother said, I never should, play with the gypsies in the wood'. The children decide that this rhyme is 'really for naughty children'. One girl says this rhyme to the 'smaller ones [children]' as they are horrible to the 'even smaller ones [children]' [00:025:05 - 00:26:29] . The recording concludes with Iona Opie asking the children what games they are planning to play on their holidays. One girl notes that she cannot play many games as she will be going on holiday in her caravan. One girl is going to Cornwall and remarks that she 'may learn some new games there'. She has learnt games on holiday before and some when she was in hospital (she was in hospital as she cut her finger on a fern) [00:26:44 - 00:29:40].

  • Description

    Item notes: Recording of children demonstrating songs and discussing playground games with Iona Opie. Recording notes: Relatively high-level recording; slightly distorted throughout. Otherwise good.

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