Childhood Games Part 2

Did you play circle games when you were a child?  I remember Go In And Out the Windows, Skip to My Lou, Farmer in the Dell, and Green Gravel.

I’ve never found anyone else who played Green Gravel.  It must have been a very local game.   I don’t remember any boys ever playing it.  We girls held hands in a circle, faced inward, and walked to the left. We sang a lilting song that went like this:

Green gravel, green gravel,  The grass is so green,

All over creation,  I’m ‘shamed to be seen.

Oh, Betty, Oh, Betty,  Your true love is dead.

He wrote you a letter, To turn back your head.

The girl mentioned would turn around in the circle and still holding hands, walk with her back to the rest of the girls, facing outward.  We continued (if recess lasted long enough) until each girl’s name was called.

As I look back, it was rather a gloomy game.  If anyone has ever heard of this game, please contact me.

Did you ever play Lemonade?  This was another team game. After the members of both sides were chosen, one side was designated as IT.  The IT side would huddle together and decide on a charade to perform and exactly how they would perform it.  [Example:  We’re climbing a ladder.  Everyone pretends to reach with hands and legs like we’re climbing.] Then the IT side approached the other side with this dialogue between the teams:

“Bum, Bum, here we come.”

“Where ‘ya from?”


“What’s your trade?”


“Get to work and show us something, if you’re not afraid.

The IT team started their charade.  If the opposing side guessed correctly, the It team immediately ran back to their side, chased by the opposing team.  Anyone caught had to go to the other side and be a member of their team.  Then the other team became IT and the game continued.  When recess ended, or when we tired of the game, whichever side had the most members was the winner.

Did you play any games special to your area?



Filed under Memories

2 responses to “Childhood Games Part 2

  1. Naomi

    I have a wonderful aunt who taught us & played with us many such games. It is nice to read of these memory-sparking games. I can’t remember the details quite as well as you describe them. Thank you so much! Annie Over was a favorite of mine. Houses are too big anymore to do this one justice! Please recount the details of this great one!

    • Sue

      I remember Annie Over. We could play that game with as few as two people. You’re right. Most houses are too big now to play this game. Maybe small barns or sheds could be used or a separate garage?

      Players split into two teams. Each group stood on the opposite side of a small house or low building. One group had possession of a ball. They called, “Annie.” The other group replied, “Over.”

      The team with the ball threw the ball over the house. As it came over the roof, someone in the other team had to catch the ball before it hit the ground. If they caught the ball, they could sneak around the side of the building and try to tag the ones on the other side. The other team ran to safety on the opposite side of building. Anyone tagged became members of the tagging team.

      If the ball was not caught, that team had to repeat, “Annie.” “Over.” and the game continued.

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