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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  • Subjects

    Children's games; Children's songs

  • Recording date


  • Is part of (Collection)

    Opie collection of children's games and songs

  • Recording locations

    London, England

  • Interviewers

    Opie, Iona (speaker, female)

  • Speakers

    unidentified (children)

  • Abstract

    Part 2 of 2. 00:00:00 - 00:19:00. This recording, continuing immediately on from C898/30/01, contains a number of brief interviews with children and women visiting the Puffin Book exhibition. The recording begins with a conversation between Iona and the two sisters heard at the end of the previous recording. Iona is interested to know what the children think is the best environment within which to play. The children describe an old chalk pit that used to exist behind their house where they would play role games such as 'The Wombles' and seeking games such as Hide-and-Seek [00:01:02 - 00:02:31]. There is then a break in the tape and a new conversation is heard between Iona and a woman who tells the story of 'Elsie Piggott', a girl who had magical skipping powers [00:02:29 - 00:05:09]. They then go on to discuss the history of rhymes such as 'Andy Pandy' and Iona expresses her frustration at not being able to piece together a history of the popular rhyme 'Knees Up Mother Brown' [00:05:30 - 00:06:14]. A child interrupts this discussion and asks how long Iona has been writing. In response, she provides a brief history of her and her husband's literary careers [00:06:12- 00:07:33]. The tape cuts again and we hear a new conversation with another woman, presumably a teacher, discussing a variety of marbles called 'chinas'. She describes how a boy in her class possessed these marbles and how she had to confiscate them (she does not state why). Iona is interested in these china marbles and their history. They go on to discuss a variation of the game marbles that the woman played as a child in India [00:11:20 -00:13:30]. The recording finishes with Iona now at a deserted playground near Shaftesbury Avenue. She asks three children who are sat waiting for their father whether they are familiar with an array of different clapping and skipping games. The children rarely speak throughout the recording, but Iona notes whether they are familiar with songs such as 'I'm a Little Bumper Car' [00:14:29 - 00:15:14]; 'Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear' [00:15:14 - 00:15:23]; 'On the Mountain' [00:15:19]; 'I'm a Little Girl Guide' [00:15:45 - 00:16:34]; 'Jelly on a Plate' [00:16:38]; and 'When Susie was a Baby and 'A Sailor Went to Sea, Sea, Sea' [00:18:00].

  • Description

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

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