List of Classic Jump Rope Rhymes

These games are usually played with a long jumprope and a rope turner on each end. Each player takes turns jumping while the turners turn the rope and chant the rhyme. These lyrics are mainly from my own memory so may vary slightly from other sources.

  1. Cinderella

    "Cinderella, dressed in yella
    Went upstairs to kiss a fella,
    By mistake she kissed a snake
    How many doctors did it take?
    1, 2, 3, 4, 5 etc." (jumper keeps jumping and counting, as the rope is turned faster and faster until the jumper misses)

  2. K-I-S-S-I-N-G - - (plug in name of jumper and favorite boy or girl "crush" of the jumper for the two names).

    "Judy and Randy sittin' in a tree
    K-I-S-S-I-N-G, (each letter said separately)
    First comes loves, then comes marriage
    Then comes Judy with a baby carriage"

  3. Down in the Valley Where the Green Grass Grows - - (same as above: plug in name of jumper and favorite boy or girl "crush" of the jumper for the two names).

    "Down in the valley where the green grass grows
    There sat Sally as pretty as a rose,
    Along came Jimmy who kissed her on the cheek
    How many kisses did she get this week?
    1, 2, 3, 4, 5 etc." (jumper keeps jumping and counting until missing)

  4. Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear - - (Jumper performs each action as it is said - such as "turning around" or "sticking out tongue" - while jumping the rope at the same time.)

    "Teddy bear, teddy bear, turn around
    Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the ground
    Teddy bear, teddy bear, stick out your tongue
    Teddy bear, teddy bear, have some fun.
    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 goodnight."

  5. Coffee and Tea - - (Plug in name of next jumper for the name. As each jumper jumps they chant the rhyme, saying the name of the next person in line. That person jumps in as the ropes are turning and both jump together while counting.)

    "I like coffee, I like tea,
    I like Anna to jump with me.
    1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5" (during the count, both jumpers jump together - then the first jumper jumps out - the second jumper now chants the rhyme using the name of next in line.)

  6. Spanish Dancer - - (Like the Teddy Bear rhyme, the jumper must perform each action (give a high kick, touch the ground, etc.) as it is said while jumping the rope at the same time.)

    "Not last night, but the night before
    24 Robbers came knocking at my door.
    I asked them what they wanted, and this is what they said:
    Spanish Dancer do the splits,
    Spanish Dancer give a high kick,
    Spanish Dancer touch the ground,
    Spanish Dancer get out of town." (jumper jumps out)

Fun Kids Games for Outdoor Play

Children's Yard Games

Here are some free and fun, old time kids games for outdoor play, including description and game rules.

  • Mother May I
    - A game I enjoyed as a kid, "Mother May I" is played like this: One player is "It" (the leader) and stands at one end of the yard. All the other players stand in a row at the other end of the yard facing the leader. The leader calls to each player by name to perform a series of steps forward. For example: "Jane, take 4 baby steps forward" or "John, take 2 bunny hops forward". The player who's name was called must then reply "Mother, May I?", at which the leader replies "Yes, you may" - then the player may take the steps forward. If the player forgets to ask "Mother, may I?" and takes the steps forward anyway - he/she is out (or must return to the starting line). First player to reach the end of the yard where the leader stands wins the game. Possible types of steps that may be taken - baby, regular, giant, bunny hop, or skip.

  • Capture the Flag
    - When I was a kid, we called this game "War" - for a few years there in my childhood, we played this game a lot! Played like this: divide everyone into two teams. Each team is given a "territory" - normally, one team is given the front yard, one the backyard. Territory could also be divided into right side of house and left side of house - whatever configuration works best. (Division into more than two teams is also possible, for larger groups.) Each team is given a flag (we used to spend a few minutes, after dividing into teams, drawing images, perhaps a team name, etc. on a piece of paper or fabric scrap flag) - then each team secretly hides the flag somewhere in their territory. Now team members must try to sneak over into the other team's territory to find the flag and not get tagged. Tagged players are removed from play, or given a penality of being "out" for a set length of time. First team to find another team's flag and bring it back to their territory wins.

  • Duck Duck Goose
    - A game we used to play when I was an elementary school kid, during recess or sometimes P.E. One player is chosen to be "It", all other players sit in a circle. The player who is It walks around the outside of the circle and as he passes each person he taps them on the head saying out loud either "duck" or "goose". If he says Goose, he must immediately start running around the outside of the circle - the tapped player (the "goose") must get up and chase "It" and try to tag him before he completes the circle and takes the spot left by the goose. If "It" makes it around and sits down without being tagged, the goose now becomes "It" and the game is repeated. If he is tagged before completing the circle he must sit in the center of the circle until replaced by another player. The goose still becomes "It" and the game continues.

  • Red Light, Green Light
    - One player is chosen as "It" and stands on one end of the yard or playing area with his back to the other players. The other players stand side by side at the starting line at the other end of the yard. "It" starts game play by saying "Green Light", then all players attempt to make it across the yard in order to tag "It". When "It" shouts "Red Light" all players must freeze. "It" turns around and if any player is spotted moving, they are sent back to the starting line to begin again (other players retain their positions). "It" says "Green Light" again, and play goes on - the first player to tag "It" wins the round and becomes the next "It", and play continues (until everyone tires out, I guess!).

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