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  • Cork City Games

Rhyme Time

Below are some rhymes that were commonly heard around the streets of Cork forty years ago. Some of them are still popular. Do you recognise any of the rhymes below?

Teddy Bear

This rhyme was commonly chanted for skipping games:

'Teddy bear, teddy bear
Turn around
Teddy bear, teddy bear
Touch the ground

Teddy bear, teddy bear
Stand up straight
Teddy bear, teddy bear
Close the gate

Teddy bear, teddy bear
Climb up stairs
Teddy bear, teddy bear
Say your prayers

Teddy bear, teddy bear
Put out the light
Teddy bear, teddy bear
Say good night.'


While skipping with a skipping rope, girls would chant the following rhyme:

'All in together girls,
Never mind the weather girls,
When I call your number,
Please jump out.'

One, Two, Three, O'Leary

This rhyme was chanted by girls as they juggled with small balls:

'One, two, three O'Leary
Four, five, six, O'Leary
Seven, eight, nine, O'Leary
Ten O'Leary
Catch the ball.
One, two, three over
Four, five six over
Seven, eight, nine over
Ten and over
Catch the ball.'(Replace 'over' with 'under', 'uppy', 'bangies' and repeat.)