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Saturday, May 9, 2015

Mother May I....? Fun and Games #RB4U #mother

Welcome back to the monthly visit from silly me! Our prompt this month is in honor of Mother's Day. Mother May I...reminds me of the game by the same name. Do you remember playing during recess or with your siblings?


The game goes like this...one person is the mother. They are the boss. They get to tell the people if they may or may not move forward. One person takes a turn and asks, "Mother may I take three scissor steps forward?" Then it's up to the Mother to decide if the child can or can't move. She can say, "Yes, you may" or "No, you may not." Most often if the Mother says no, she can counter with a different choice like "No, but you may take two baby steps."


I always loved playing this game with my sisters but it wasn't until I was older that I realized that the Mother could decide who won the game. The winner was the person who was able to touch the mother. Then they became the new Mother. What a power trip! 


As the Mother, I could punish my sister who annoyed me by taking the bigger piece of cake. She'd never win! I could boss my friends around...Yes, you can or No. I'm sure that the game had some redeeming values but like other fun games (Red Light, Green Light or Red Rover, Red Rover), it is hard to see it today in our world of PC correctness and anti-bullying. **I have to admit we played Red Rover, Red Rover let everyone but Melanie come over. She was the baby and got away with everything!**


It's ironic that as a teacher, my students have never heard of this game, let alone played it. Is it that we don't have children outside playing those "fun" games because they spend so much time watching screens or playing video games, or is it that they are so scheduled with piano, soccer, and dance that they don't have time to go outside and play? Could it be that the neighborhoods have changed? Do children really get together to play a game of kick the can or stick ball? It's a lot to ponder  and I don't believe that there is only one reason.


Today as spring weather abounds, I am reminded of those simpler times where games were played outside among the trees, flowers and neighborhoods, where children came together to learn how to get along and how to negotiate differences. And of course, I'm reminded of the thrill of being in power over my sisters! :) "Yes, you may take ten jumps...and then when you're it, you'll let me win the next round!"

What games do you remember playing growing up? Do you feel that we've moved away from those games? Why?



I'd like to take a moment to wish all the Mother's, Mother's to be, and the million of people who act like a mom to someone....Happy Mother's Day. I wish you a day filled with love!

Visit with me next month on the 9th for another sneak peek at my wacky world!


Sincerely,
Melissa

17 comments:

Cara Marsi said...

HI, Melissa. I've heard of "Mother, May I?" but I don't believe I've ever played it. Of course, as kids we played outside all the time. So many kids spend more time indoors now which is a shame. Happy Mother's Day to you too!

Melissa Keir said...

Hi Cara, I clearly remember the time it happened that we no longer played outside...it was when we moved to a state that recently had a child abduction and murder. I'd never heard of such a thing and couldn't believe the world wasn't a safe place anymore...mind you, I was now 20. #naive.

Nancy Gideon said...

When we were kids we were outside playing from breakfast to nightfall. It was rare to find an obese child.We simply had too much to do with what little we had. The joy of fresh air and imagination is, unfortunately, becoming a lost art.

Melissa Keir said...

Sadly Nancy, that's true. We'd take a small baggie of cereal and head off into the woods for the afternoon, playing among the quarries. Luckily we didn't die or kill ourselves! My sisters still remark on that!!

Maris said...

I remember Mother May I and Simon Says, which was somewhat similar because you couldn't follow a command unless "Simon says" was included. As for playing outside, I recently read an article that talked about schools in one of the Netherland countries that had the highest achievement level of all school systems in the world. One of the main differences over other school systems was theirs included 1 hour of recess (or outdoor play) at ALL grade levels. It showed that people need that physical release time. They don't get it sitting in front of a computer or TV.

Melissa Keir said...

Maris, I agree both Simon Says and Mother May I were games involving a power play. But I liked to trick people with Simon Says, because Simon could do the actions and if the person watched, they got it wrong, so I closed my eyes. Sneaky!

We've learned so many wonderful things about the importance of recess. It's sad that we feel the need to take it out of our schools.

jean hart stewart said...

Yes, I played that game. I also remember wandering free as a child, collecting pollywogs in a stream nearby, and taking them home to watch grow tails. Then my sister and I carefully released them back in the stream. I also played Simon Says.Would that children of today had the freedom I had...

Melissa Keir said...

Jean,
It is sad that children don't have that kind of freedom. I asked one of my students about why he thinks Video Games are good...His response:
"Something to do when I'm bored so I won't make a mess or get in trouble."

Do some parents use the screens to keep their children from being a problem? You bet, but what message does that share? I'm all for some time, but for a better reason!

Paris said...

I remember playing all those games and spending much of my summer outdoor. We'd take peanut butter sandwiches and hike through the woods, Tarzan off the vines and explore until we felt like going home for dinner. It was a different time, that's for sure. Now there are places where neighbors call the police if your child is outside without supervision. With everything that goes on in the world today, I can see where you'd want to supervise more but there was something about learning to think for yourself that led to a certain level of confidence that we don't see as much these days.

Melissa Keir said...

Paris, You hit the nail on the head. My children had the police called on them for playing outside in our condo common area. It is a more scary place. I wish we could go back to that time of innocence. :)

Lynda Bailey said...

Lovely post, Melissa. Thanks for the memories, and Happy Momma's Day backatcha... ;)

Melissa Keir said...

Thank you Lynda. I appreciate you stopping by!

Liza O'Connor said...

I don't remember ever playing Mother May I, but I hated rigged games, so I would have quit the first time mother said no.
lol

Melissa Keir said...

Liza... why does that not surprise me? What if you could be the mom??

Diane Burton said...

I remember playing Mother May I, Red Rover, hopscotch, Simon Says. It was safe to play outside all day long. Not anymore. You never know what crazies are out there.

Lucy Naylor Kubash said...

I was way younger than my two sisters and grew up playing by myself much of the time. We lived in a rural area so did play outside, always accompanied by several dogs. Never worried about anyone bothering me when I wandered out to go sledding or just hanging out in the woods. I think that's why I tend to get along better with animals than people sometimes! I also started making up stories for myself then. Life was certainly different and it's sad that kids today don't have that kind of freedom.

Melissa Keir said...

Thanks Diane. Those wonderful memories of fun and games make me wish for those earlier times.

Lucy, I appreciate you visiting. I can't imagine growing up without my four younger sisters always around me! They never left me alone!

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