Games We Played

I’m not sure if we learned these games from Mom (Gail Lee Martin) or from other kids at school. You may have played some of these in your childhood. Remember these games: Duck Duck Goose, Steal the Bacon, Drop the Handkerchief, Simon Says, and Mother, May I? There were always the old standbys of Tag and Hide and Seek to play too.

Since there were 6 children in our family and we lived in the country, we had to entertain ourselves. That was enough for some games, but others like Red Rover were better when played with a larger number.

Red Rover, Red Rover

We played Red Rover on the sloping field behind West Branch Country School. You needed a good number of kids to make two teams. Each team lined up and linked hands. One team would chant, “Red Rover, Red Rover, send Jimmy (or another player from the other team) over.

Jimmy would leave his team and run as fast and forcefully as he could to burst through the other team’s line. If the runner succeeds at breaking through the line, he/she gets to choose someone from that team to add to their own team.

running boy pixabay

Each team takes a turn calling for a player to come over. Once one team has all the players, they win.

Directions for More Old-Fashioned Games

martin cousins, Karen, Lori, Bonnie, Raymond, I think

Martin cousins playing “Button Button.” Karen, Lori, Bonnie, Raymond.

While refreshing my memory on these games, I ran across a few that were new to me. I don’t remember playing Sardines, Four Square, or Capture the Flag. I found one called What Time Is It, Mr. Wolf that sounded really fun.

I’d love to hear about some games that you remember from your early days. Click on COMMENT and tell me about some.

6 thoughts on “Games We Played

  1. As I was an only child games were very solitary. Our school was small (only six children by the time I was in sixth class). We played rounders, Red Back Town,
    (building towns in the dirt with houses and cars), marbles and built cubbies. These all seemed to have a cycle which lasted a few weeks. I remember playing “What’s the Time Mr Wolf” with my own children.


  2. I remember playing those games. I was always a big fan of Red Rover. In school we played Thumbs up & up at our desks. We would all put our heads down and a thumb up and other students would put our thumb down, then you had to guess who it was. If you guessed right you got to put someone else’s thumb down next round. Good memories.


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