Wednesday, April 29, 2009


When spring came to the Northrop School grounds, the long ropes came out of storage and the girls, generally in threes or fours, found places on the sidewalk in front of the school to skip rope. The caution was to keep the rope out of the mud next to the sidewalk.

It was a good time in life for all of us, jump rope was something everyone seemed to know how to do and those school ropes were just heavy enough to have that perfect cadence as it looped over and around the jumper tapping the sidewalk as the jumper skipped to such poetry as:

Cinderella, dressed in yellow
went upstairs to kiss a 'fella
made a mistake
and kissed a snake
how many doctors
did it take?

(Count until skipper misses)


Not last night but the night before
24 robbers came knocking at my door,
as I ran out, (run out of rope), they ran in, (jump back in)
[they] knocked me on the head with a rolling pin


Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, turn around,
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, touch the ground
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, show your shoe
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, that will do!
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, go upstairs-
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, say your prayers

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, turn out the lights-
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, say good-night!

The children jump rope while they sing this rhyme, they act out the actions as the words come up in the rhyme. An example: when they say go upstairs, the child pretends to climb the stairs.


Red Hot Pepper
in the pot.
Gotta get over
what the leaders got

(Count and speed up the rope until the jumper misses)

Although the counting was done for the number of jumps, there was never a tally kept. You were either a good skipper or not. There didn't seem to be any in between. There were also good rope twirlers and bad rope twirlers. Those who kept the rope slapping the sidewalk and those that lifted the rope to make you miss. Interesting, isn't it, that the twirlers that lifted the rope got banned from the serious rope jumpers. Why? Because it was considered unsportsmanlike.

Have you skipped today?


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