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Let's Play: Traditional Games of Childhood Hardcover – February 1, 1998


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Hardcover, February 1, 1998
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 and up
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Kids Can Press (February 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1550744976
  • ISBN-13: 978-1550744972
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 10.4 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.7 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,283,982 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 3AAn enjoyable book of traditional games, some of which date back to the ancient Greeks and Romans. Gryski has gathered together and explained the rules for pastimes that require little or no equipment. Jacks, marbles, hopscotch, clapping games, and jump-rope rhymes and their variations are just some of the activities presented. Readers will marvel at the number of different versions of tag included and may never have heard of "Sardines" (backward hide-and-seek). The humorous watercolor and pen-and-ink cartoons clarify the directions and add lots of fun. Children will appreciate the lively presentation and adults who need to refresh their memories will find this a gold mine.ABlair Christolon, Prince William Library, Manassas, VA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

A joyous initiation into the world of old-fashioned fun, for kids whose games are now enjoyed in adult-supervised play-dates, cyberspace, and television. Although it will be odd for adults to see that old favorites such as hide-and-seek, tag, marbles, and hopscotch are passed along in a book instead of on the playground, Gryski (Friendship Bracelets, 1993) does a marvelous job of making such age-old games look at least as fun as Nintendo. Leap frog includes intriguing variations, such as ``Keep the Kettle Boiling,'' and the jump-rope rhymes will keep even skilled skippers on their toes. She also includes snippets of history, e.g., jacks were called ``Astragals'' by the Romans and played with sheep's ankle bones. Petrii's pictures are boisterous visualizations of Gryski's ideas: An illustration of the game of Telephone shows a girl whispering a picture of a chicken to her friend; as each child passes the message along, the view of the chicken utterly disintegrates. One of the book's finer moments is found in the introduction, which encourages children to alter the games: ``These games belong to you, too. They are yours to play.'' (Nonfiction. 7-10) -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca Brown on August 21, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Children have been playing games for thousands of years. Some of the details have changed, although their basic patterns remain the same. We still love to jump & hop, throw & catch, chase & hide!
Counting Out, Tag, Hide-and-Seek, Hunt the Thimble, Leapfrog, Hopscotch, Jumping Rope, Balls, Clapping Games, Hand Games, Hand Shadows, Telephone, Jackstones & Marbles - these are the names - now get the book & read their stories & how they're played.
Most of these games are hundreds of years old, some even going back to before ancient Roman, Egyptian & Greek times; some are specific to a culture & modernized with each generation of children teaching children teaching children. This is a good book to keep in your family for when everyone is burnt out from their sedentary existence or for when relatives arrive & the ice needs breaking. It is also a good book because it reminds us of how inventive we can be when left to our own devices - which children are not encouraged nearly enough.
All the games of my pre-television childhood are here. They all taught me, by repetition & example, how to count, how to listen & how to see. How to coordinate my legs & arms & how to be quiet under duress as well as how to be loud when necessary.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Williams on November 15, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This is quite a small and simple book, well illustrated and well written.
There are a number of games covered including varieties of all the staples of childhood; tag, hide and seek, skipping, ball games and marbles just to name a few. Most parents will recognise almost every one from their childhood, though perhaps under a different name.
You may discover, as I did, that none of the varieties not already played by my daughter were picked up be her and her friends. It seemed they were attached to the games that had been handed down in the playground through countless numbers of schoolchildren. I discovered one version of freeze tag at my daughter's school had been played in the same way, with the same rules, safe spots and exclusion zones, for more than twenty five years.
My one complaint is that some of the explanations of games are a little short and not that many popular varieties of each are covered. A book with a little more depth might have been reviewed at five stars, otherwise a marvellous little gem.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on April 7, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Let's Play: Traditional Games Of Childhood is a lively and energetic compendium of classic and timeless playground games and rhymes complete with simple, clear instructions for play. Ranging from Leapfrog to Marbles, Hopscotch to Sardines, here are to be found old familiar games and a number of new twists on generational favorites. Kids of all ages (and their parents and grand parents too!) will want to play every game in this wonderful collection, at home or at school, on the playground or in the park. Highly recommended!
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