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Spring has finally sprung, which means that the kids can finally play outside in the fresh air once more. Want to discover which Dutch children’s games have been popular in the Netherlands for centuries, particularly at parties? Then, read on!
Two hessian potato sacks are required for this game. Two children each pull a potato sack over their feet and then proceed to ‘hop’ as quickly as possible over a distance of approx. 10 metres. Whoever reaches the finish line first is the winner. After all the children have taken a turn, the winners of the first round compete against each other until there’s only one competitor remaining, who’s promptly declared the ‘champion’.
Cut one pack of ontbijtkoek (Dutch breakfast cake) into slices (or alternatively use a handy, pre-sliced pack of breakfast cake), and then attach each slice to a piece of string of approx. 30-50 cm in length. Now hang the slices of breakfast cake onto a washing line, at a height that the children can easily reach with their mouths. Then ask the children to place their hands behind their backs and encourage them to eat the breakfast cake as quickly as possible. The first to devour an entire slice is the winner.
Take as many large nails as there are children and tie each nail to a piece of string. Now hang the nail from the waist of every child and then place an empty bottle underneath their legs. The first child to lower their nail into the bottle is the victor.
First set up an obstacle course of some 50 meters or so, containing hurdles such as a paddling pool, tree trunk or sand pit. Then give all of the children an egg on a spoon and ask them to run across the obstacle course as quickly as they can. The child first to cross the finish line, without dropping their egg, wins.
Draw a donkey (without its tail) on a large sheet of paper. Draw the tail on a separate piece of paper or fashion one from a piece of old rope, and then push a pin into it. Now allow the children to take turns trying to pin the tail to the correct spot on the donkey, whilst blindfolded. The child that the pins the tail closest to where it should go is the winner.
Prefer to read this article in Dutch? Then visit our sister blog, Heimwee.info, specifically intended for Dutch emigrants.