Game – United States

Down By the Banks

Down by the banks of the Hanky Panky
Where the bullfrogs jump from bank to banky
Where the eeps, ops, sodapops
Hey Mr. Lilypad and went kerplops

Hand clapping games are very popular all over the world. My informant told me about one of her hand clapping games she played when she was young. The above lyrics are what two people sang while they smacked their hands together kind of like “patty cake” hand motions. At the end of the song they would shout freeze and they would hold their positions and who ever flinched or moved would loose the game. She said that she played this game at recess all throughout her elementary school years. She said that she would play this game out of leisure and fun and all her of friends played it.

As I was growing up in elementary school hand clapping games were popular then too. As a guy I would not participate in them but because I had a younger sister I would know a lot about them. There are many variations to this hand game. I can remember at least 5 different hand clapping songs from when I was young and I am pretty sure there were many more. I feel that this game is played predominantly by girls because as children girls are more prone to sing songs play sit down games compared to guys who would play sports and run around. Many variations of this song have not only clapping of hands with the other person but they would also smack their thighs and each other’s heads. This game is probably played all around the world in many different languages.