Me And You, Us Never Part. Makidada: Jump Rope Jingles And Hand Clap Games We Used To Play

March 22, 2013  |  
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Remember the scene in Color Purple where Celie and Nettie play their hand game? It took us  back to a time where we clapped hands and chanted lyrics to catchy songs with a group of our girlfriends. It was rhythmic in nature and taught us hand-eye coordination and communication skills. It also boosted our confidence to be able to weave hands in an intricate, synchronized fashion. We clapped hands in solidarity, and we also jumped rope. With one long, braided rope, two plastic handles and three girls, feet would smack the ground to the beat of song and rope hitting the ground. We’d jump in and out, waiting on the perfect moment so as not to stop the rope. These ol’ school games brought us together – kept us active and young at heart. And to this day, Michelle Obama still loves jumping rope for a good workout. Which of these childhood jingles do you remember?

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

turn all around,

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

touch the ground

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

shoe yo’ shoes

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

be excused

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

jump back in

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

do it again

This classic jump rope song kept you jumping in and out of the swinging rope space.

Source: Shutterstock

Fudge, Fudge

Fudge, fudge

call the judge

_ _ _ _ _  is havin’ a baby

wrap it up in toilet paper

send it down the elevator

boy, girl, twins, triplets

boy, girl, twins, triplets

When you hit the last two lines of the song, the rope moved faster and faster. Whenever you slipped up determined if you were going to have a boy, girl or twins/triplets.

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School Education

School education

spell your name

capital _ _ _ _ _ _ (insert jumper’s name)

The jumper would spell out their first, middle and last name. The more letters you uttered, the faster the jump rope turned.

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Miss Mary Mack

Miss Mary Mack, Mack, Mack

All dressed in black, black, black,

with silver buttons, buttons, buttons

all down her back, back, back

Miss Mary Mack’s wardrobe is detailed in a sing-song manner. This song was versatile – it was a popular selection for jump rope and hand clapping.


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Cinderella Dressed In Yella

Cinderella Dressed in Yella

went upstairs to kiss her fella

make a mistake

kissed a snake

how many doctors will it take?

1, 2, 3

This throw-back song had your feet hitting the pavement to a Cinderella diddy. Cinderella, same as original story, always ran into some misfortune in this song.

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Inky Binky Bonkey

Inky Binky Bonkey

Daddy bought a donkey,

donkey die, daddy cry

Inky, Binky Bonkey

This hand game was often played to determine who was going to be “it” first in a game of freeze tag or hide and go seek.

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Bubble Gum, Bubble Gum

Bubble Gum, Bubble Gum

in a dish, how many pieces do you wish?

This game also narrowed the group of us down to one person. That person was deemed Mother in the “Mother May I” game or the street light in “Red Light, Green Light.” Hands went from being clasped together, to two separate fist, then to one fist and finally you were ruled out.

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Dr. Knickerbocker

Dr. Knickerbocker, Knickerbocker number 9

he sure got sick off a bottle of wine

Now let’s get the rhythm of the hands

Now you got the rhythm of the hands

Now let’s get the rhythm of the feet

Now you got the rhythm of the feet

Now let’s get the rhythm of the ping pong

Poor Dr. Knickerbocker! Everyone embodied Dr. Knickerbocker, slowly regaining feeling in hands, feet and hips.


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Rockin’ Robin

Tweedly dee, tweedly dee, skee ball

Tweedly dee, tweedly dee, that’s all

Tweedly dee, tweedly dee – popsickle, popsickle, ah boom boom

Gonna rock it in the tree top

all day long

huffin’ and a puffin’ and a singin’ that song

all lil’ birds

on Jaybird street

love to hear the robbins go

tweet, tweet, tweet

Rockin’ Robin, tweet, tweet a tweet

This four way, hand clapping game had you smacking palms to your right, left, up high and down low. One person could throw the whole game off , and you’d have to start from the beginning again. Once you got through the whole song, no one could tell you anything!

Source: Shutterstock


Slide, slide

slippity slide


Hands in clap position, you would slide the back of your hand against your partners and slap palms with one hand hi and low.

Source: Shutterstock



Catch a tiger by the toe

If he hollers, let him go

Eenie, Menie, Miney Moe

There was a recent Mentos Gum commercial where a guy took this song literally. He caught a tiger by the toe! This is a highly favored childhood song used to pick teams, select captains, etc.

One Potato, Two Potato

One potato, two potato

three potato, four

five potato, six potato

seven potato more

One of the many songs we sang together with our friends. Perhaps it derived from bags filled with an abundance of potatoes.

Source: Shutterstock

Down Down Baby

Down, down baby

Down by the roller coaster

Sweet, sweet baby

I’ll never let you go

Shimmy-shimmy cocoa pop

Shimmy-shimmy whaaaa

Shimmy-shimmy cocoa pop

Shimmy-shimmy whaaa

I like coffee, I like tea

I like the colored boy

and he likes me

so jump back white girl

you don’t shine

I’ll get the colored boy

to kick yo’ behind

he’ll kick it low,

he’ll kick it high

he’ll kick it all the way

to Mexico

and while ya there

comb ya hair

and don’t forget

your stinky underwear

This song has many variations to the lyrics, but boy did it go into depth about desires and strong dislikes. For some reason, Mexico is not the place to be.

Source: Shutterstock

Pat-a cake

Pat-a-cake, Pat-a-cake, Baker’s man

bake me a cake as fast as you can

roll em up, roll em up

and put it in a pan

A sweet hand-clap game for little toddlers who love to roll those arms up and put it in the pan.

Source: Shutterstock

Shame, Shame, Shame

Shame, shame, shame

I don’t wanna go to Mexico no more, more, more

There’s a big fat policeman at the door, door, door

He will grab you by the collar

Girl you better hollar

I don’t wanna go to Mexico no more, more, more

There’s something eery about this song-like something sinister went on in Mexico  . . . perhaps an attempted kidnapping. Does this have something to do with why the black community is mistrustful of five-O? The message is clear though – you better hollar if something ain’t right.

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