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Oats and Beans and Barley

Kid’s Party Games

Do you have a Toy library at your house? Aptly named Parent Hacks has tons of fun tips to help keep parents sane, which seems like a pretty good goal. And now, on to the classic game of the day –

Oats and Beans and Barley

All the children form a ring with the exception of one player, who stands in the centre. The children then dance round this one, singing the first three lines of the verses given below. At the forth line they stop dancing and act the words that are sung. They pretend to scatter seed then stand at ease, stamp their feet, clap their hands, and at the words: “Turn him round,” each child turns round.

They then again clap hands and dance round, and when the words: “Open the ring and send one in,” are sung, the center child chooses a partner, who steps into the ring, and the two stand together while the other children sing the remaining verse, after which the child who was first in the centre joins the ring and the game is continues as before.

Oats and beans and barley O!
Do you or I or anyone know
How oats and beans and barley grow?

First the farmer sows his seed,
Then he stands and takes his ease,
Stamps his foot and claps his hands,
And turns him round to view the land.

Oats and beans and barley O!
Waiting for a partner, Waiting for a partner,
Open the ring and send one in.
Oats and beans and barley O!

So now you're married you must obey,
You must be true to all you say,
You must be kind, you must be good,
And help your wife to chop the wood.
Oats and beans and barley O!"

Games for All Occasions by Mary E. Blain

Image © shizhao @ Flickr, Attribution

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