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Children’s Day: These Outdoor Games Will Take 90’s Kids Down Beautiful Memory Lane

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Today’s May 27th, Children’s day. It’s a day the world sets aside to celebrate children all over the world. Children’s day was inaugurated in 1957 to extol the resilience of the child, promote togetherness, and raise awareness for children worldwide.


The innocence, the naivety, the sheer precociousness of children is something that must be protected at all costs. This is why the work of bodies like the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and other child support humanitarian bodies is priceless.


As kids, we remember feeling free as a bird with no worries in the world except maybe what was for lunch and of course the next time we’d be allowed to play.


In the spirit of celebrating the child we were before life happened and adulting ruined everything, we’re taking a walk down memory lane to some of the outdoor games we played as kids.

1. Tinko Tinko

This was a game that involved a lot of hand slapping and clapping. A particular song was accompanied by the game and you have to move your hands rapidly smacking your partner’s and clapping as the routine dictated. It brought such a rush because you have to keep up as the intensity of the game builds.

2. War Start

90ties (maybe 80ties) children watched a lot of American war movies. At some point, they’d to act them out and the “War start” game was born. It involved constructing makeshift guns from wood or plastic then reenacting the wars seen in movies. The game commences when the leader screams on top of his lungs “war….start!!!”. Everyone then scrambles for cover and tries to ” shoot” the next person. If you’re shot, you’ve to leave. Its a replica of today’s paintball game, only without the sophistication of it.

3. Suwe or kicking Suwe

Suwe can be said to be the African version of Hop Scotch. A box is drawn on the floor and players take turns to hop through it whilst kicking a small stone or plastic can cover. The rules differ according to players but the constants include not stepping on the lines and not letting your stone or plastic can cover fall on the lines else you’re out.

Children's Day
A young child playing Suwe
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-Children’s Day: These Outdoor Games Will Take 90ties Kids Down Beautiful Memory Lane


Now this was one intense game. It combines treasure hunt, hide and seek, and the fastest feet. The organizer (usually an older kid) tells the children to hide. Then he places sticks, each for a child in the game, in a strategic hidden position. The children have to find the sticks, run to touch a designated spot, and run back with the stick intact. Whoever finds the stash of sticks, extricates it and fulfills his/her running duties first, wins.

4. Kite flying

This involved making the kite bird with papers. A long rope is then attached to the paper kite and let up into the sky with the owner holding onto the rope. It was not uncommon to see groups of children peering into the sky in open fields all clutching ropes and controlling their “kites”. The game was to outdo the next kite flyer with how good your kite was and how high it could fly.

5. Ten Ten

While some boys indulged in this game, it was mainly played by the girls. It involves a lot of clapping and leg throwing. The game is to count in tens while trying to evade matching legs with your partner. The person with the highest number at the end of the game wins.

Children's Day: These Outdoor Games Will Take 90ties Kids Down Beautiful Memory Lane


Which ones did we miss out on? Please do tell us your own childhood games in the comment box below.


Happy Children’s day to all the kids all over the world and also, the children at heart.


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Sarah Oyedo

A reader, thinker, a dreamer and a believer. Fruity cocktails and asun are the way to my heart.

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