9 Childhood Games Anyone Who Grew Up In Nigeria Can Never Forget


Children want to grow up fast and do what adults do but ironically, adults want to be children again. With the struggles that comes with being a grown up, every once in a while, people find an escape, merely by reflecting on childhood memories. Anyone who grew up in Nigeria, probably had the best childhood in the world. From street football on raining days to suwee during weekends and long holidays, Nigerian kids passed all the courses in the childhood university. INFORMATION NIGERIA, this beautiful Friday brings you 9 childhood games that would definitely make you love your childhood the more….


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Fire on the mountain: Kids are arranged into two circles, one with one more member than the other. When a signal is given, they begin to run in opposite directions singing “fire on the mountain, run, run, run” until a whistle signalling – “fire is up!” is blown. Then each player tries to get a partner from the other circle. After the scramble, the player without a partner is penalised to do certain stunts or made to squat in the centre of the circle. The removal process continues until one pair is left and the pair are crowned the winners.  The name for this game varies across Nigerian cultures.

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Boju-Boju: This is the Nigerian version of hide and seek. Every other person goes into hiding and the person seeking will start by singing the song, ‘boju boju o…’ and after singing, he starts to chase and anyone he/she catches will be the next to seek. Every seeker starts his/her chase by sing the song.

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Rope-Skipping: Girls loved this one. There is the one where each competitor skips and everyone counts, when she/he misses, the next person starts. The winner is decided by the person with the highest number.


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Thug of war: Although kids back then didn’t know what this one was called but it was definitely fine to play it back then. Here, there are two leaders facing each other holding tightly onto a rope with a line drawn infront of them, then their team members queue behind them. Both teams will start to pull simaultanously and the team that is able to completely pull the other team over to its side is declared the winner.


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Tinko Tinko: Girls especially loved this one. It involves two partners facing each other, while the theme song is sang by both as the game goes on. With hands held half way up, they begin the game which involves interchanging of hands front and back and slamming of hands by both partners. In this game, a lot of clapping happens in this game.


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Who Is In The Garden: Here, the children make a big circle, starting with singing “form a big circle”. After that, the anchor then stays in the middle and runs in the circle singing, “ Who is in the garden a little fine boy/ girl( depending on the sex of the child) can I come and see him/ her, then everybody then responds “No” “No” “No”  , then the anchor someone else and says “follow me”. This cycle is repeated until the last person remains, then others go in hiding while the last person goes searching for them.

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Police and thief: This was like Nigerian kids replicating action blockbursters. In this game, there are the good guys (police) and the bad guys (thieves) but the stolen object is imagined. The kids then divide themselves into two groups, then the police group will try to find and catch those people playing thieves.

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Ayo: This is played on a rectangular carved board by two players with 12 round pits, 6 on each side. 48 small seeds are shared in fours into each of the 12 holes. Each player takes turns to move seeds from the pits on his side of the board and strives to win more than half the seeds to win the game.

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Ten Ten In playing this game, girls stand facing each other and clap their hands as they move their legs to a rhythm. The goal of each girl during this game is to ensure that she does not raise the same leg directly facing the other girl – which means it is no problem for a girl to raise a left leg when the other girl raises a right leg. The moment a girl raises the wrong leg, the other girl scores a point.

Which was your favourite???



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