Articles/Saudi children’s games of the past

Saudi children’s games of the past

ألعاب زمان خالدة في الذاكرة

15 APR 2020


Source: Nadeen Al-Wazani

Saudi children in the past loved to play simple exciting games of skill and intelligence. These games for both boys and girls contributed to strengthening social ties and preserving folk traditions. Wafy covers the most famous children’s games in the Kingdom.

Hoop rolling

Saudi children used to recycle damaged bicycle tires by attaching them to a meter-long stick or iron wire and rolling them along the ground with their peers around the old neighborhoods. The game involved keeping the hoop upright for as long as possible while performing various tricks.

Prick the dates

This is a fun game that farmers created using the thorns of palm trees. Players would cut a number of 15-centimeter thorns and dig a small hole where a number of dates would be buried. Two or more players would then try to prick the dates by inserting the thorns into the hole and scoring a point for each successful turn.

Wooden swings

Wooden swings of different heights have always been found in old neighborhoods and have provided countless hours of fun for children. These hammock-resembling swings were made from palm wood erected between two columns of huge tree trunks and four strong ropes hanging from the wooden board. One child or two facing each other would sit and swing joyfully.

Children also took advantage of most natural resources available to them such as bones, stones or dates. However, the wide variety of new electronic games available today has encouraged children to abandon these activities, which have now become dear memories for the elderly, especially during festivals.

Handmade cars

One of the most popular activities that appealed to youngsters was making a small car from leftover auto parts, such as cutting an oil gallon and installing it as a box, placing it on a wooden board and making four wheels from soft drink cans.