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Thread: grade school toys

  1. #1
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    grade school toys

    This past weekend my 7 and 8 yr old nephews showed me their rather large Playstation 2, Sega, Xbox, Nintendo, Super Nintendo, PC (is there some other game platform I am missing?) game collection. It was impressive, but at the same time I was struck by the lack of other types of toys the kids had. I mean, my brother has dutifully provided them with baseball gloves, hockey sticks and other sports related acoutrements so they don't turn into total little butterballs, but I didn't see yo yos or other 'portable' toys. I remember when I was a kid it was a big deal to bring certain toys to school that you could play with before/after school or at recess. I remember there were several fads - there was a big yo yo craze and I don't know if anyone remembers 'Klackers' - two plastic balls connected at either end of a string that you would knock together to make a 'klacking' sound - it looked cool too. I also remember these top-like things called 'wizzers' were a big deal at one point (I think in my parents day marbles were all the rage). I wonder if maybe my nephews are just wierd or do kids nowadays just not play with non-electronic toys?
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  2. #2
    My seven year old son is addicted to his Gameboy, but he also is a fiend at soccer and he absolutely loves this cool wooden airplane on a string (kind of similar to the motorized planes many of us had as kids --mine was a 4-engine B-17). So, at least my son is a bit of both. If we let him, though, I have no doubt he'd totally blob on the Gameboy.

    Klackers were outlawed from my school as a kid
    On pitching to Stan Musial:
    "Once he timed your fastball, your infielders were in jeopardy."
    Warren Spahn

  3. #3
    Sure my kids have the full range of electronic toys including nintendos and playstations. The one toy that they seem to have the most fun with is their collection of Legos. They have a huge plastic bin with literally thousands of pieces that they love to spread out in the playroom floor and build all sorts of things with. It could be that I have a couple of budding engineers/architects/planners on my hands.
    A word to the wise ain't necessary. It's the stupid ones that need the advice.
    --Bill Cosby

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    The only cartoon still on my refrigerator is a a "foxtrot" strip. First frame, he is flying a kite. Second frame he is unenthusiastically tossing a frisbee. Third frame, he is standing in swim trunks in a sprinkler (not playing, just standing there). Fourth frame, his mom is holding a ball and she is saying "Now, this thing kids called a ball..." and he is waving arms and obviously irritated saying "Mom, sheesh! Enough with the historical re-enactments! Will you just let me ply my video games?!"

    Do they sell any toys other than video games anymore? B-)

  5. #5
    Cyburbian SlaveToTheGrind's avatar
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    The Itza Football. Still have it, too. Played many football games in grade school and at home in the late 70's with it. Even got it caught on the school roof a time or two. Too bad the valve leaks so it won't hold air.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    My 11 year old loves his video games, but he'd still rather be outside playing any kind of sport/game, riding his bike, working on his "treehouse", etc. As for non-video toys, he's starting to get into car models and other kits (make your own clock, volcano, and the like), likes to draw, and of course collects gazillions of Yu-Gi-Oh cards.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian PlannerByDay's avatar
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    I think kids these days are becoming dependant on other external elements (playstation, x-box, gameboy) for stimulation. It seems like when you take a kid away from these external stimulants and give them something like Legos, a Rector Set, a YO-YO or something that requires you to think, they instantly get bored. They get bored because they aren't getting stimulation back.

    This is going to lead to a bunch of intraverted, fat and IMO "ugly" (not in the physical/attractive sense) humans. People who are not creative or able to function without instant feedback or stimulation.

    I'm 29, and growing up never had a Nintendo, didn't have cable and had dinner with my parents at the kitchen table everynight. When people I know ask me if I watched TV shows like "Fact of Life" "Different Strokes" or other 80's programs I say NO. I was outside playing, climbing in trees, frying bugs with my magnifying glass and other kids stuff.

    Many kids these days don't know what to do with a YO-YO, and IMO are missing out on what it really means to be a kid and get dirty and have fun.

    The classic grade school toys are disapearing, and that is to bad.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Floridays's avatar
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    We used to kick around a "Hackey Sack..." remember those? At school we played a lot of softball and kickball and just all around "fun outdoor games" that didn't require a lot of gear.

    One of my friends works part-time at a Mother's Day Out program, and she's amazed at how kids have no idea how to just "play."

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Duke Of Dystopia's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by PlannerByDay
    I think kids these days are becoming dependant on other external elements (playstation, x-box, gameboy) for stimulation. It seems like when you take a kid away from these external stimulants and give them something like Legos, a Rector Set, a YO-YO or something that requires you to think, they instantly get bored. They get bored because they aren't getting stimulation back.
    .......
    I disagree. I have rarely ever seen a kid get bored with legos. I can't remember the last time I saw it happen. I also believe the video games aren't the issue, its parents allowing the substitution of the electronic toys when they should be outside doing things with the kids.

    There are appropriate times to gives kids choices and others when you just tell them what to do. For instance:

    Ok guys, I am working on the house this weekend, if you don't leave for the park with your friends, I will put you to work.

    Hey guys, were going to play catch, go get the gloves (notice its a command)

    Hey guys, would you rather sit around here and play video games all day, OR, we could take the boat out to the islands where all the chicks hang out in the bakinies by the hundreds? (notice the psychological twisting that occuring).

    Kids choices need to be geared toward both thier entertainment and getting them to do what you want them to do. Just as long as you do it WITH them. Time is more important than the any other factor.
    I can't deliver UTOPIA, but I can create a HELL for you to LIVE in :)DoD:(

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Planderella's avatar
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    As a child, I loved playing jacks, jumping rope (for fun, not for fitness), pick-up sticks - where you use one stick to lift the other sticks off the floor without touching another one, and classic board games.
    "A witty woman is a treasure, a witty beauty is a power!"

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Dragon's avatar
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    When I was a kid I received a Nintendo for one of my birthdays. Nintendo is fun and all, I’ve upgraded to a PS2 since then, recall many games that encourage problem solving to advance in the game. Though, I still found time to (help) build a tree house, get shot with BB guns, play with my Ninja Turtles, collect garbage pal kids, wreck my bike, play on trampolines, feed matchbox cars to my dog, legos, etc.

    My 9-year-old brother does like Video games, but he plays with Dragon Ball Z toys, throws a football with me (when I’m visit home), and chases other kids around with sticks.

    I think Video games are useful in teaching hand-eye coordination, and problem solving skills, but like anything else can be over done.

    Quote Originally posted by Floridays
    We used to kick around a "Hackey Sack..." remember those?
    Ahhh...still quick on my feet.

    Quote Originally posted by Planderella
    and classic board games.
    Candyland anyone? :-P
    “Ahh! Beer. So many choices. And it makes so little difference."
    - Bender

  12. #12
    I don't have kids but it does seem that any kid over the age of 6 or 7 has a videogame system and that is their prized possesion. At Christmas and birthdays they get more games.

    When I was a kid we had Atari 2600 but it never seemed to be the number one entertainment option. We rode around on dirtbikes, made go-karts, went fishing, took inner-tubes down the river near our house, etc. We had yo-yos, scooters, hackey sacks, etc. When it was raining we played with legos or sorted through comic books and baseball cards (which were 25 cents a pack, not the 3-5 dollars that they are today!). We had a model train set and a ton of hot-wheels/matchbox cars to play with too.
    "I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me, no matter how dumb my suggestions are."

    - Homer Simpson

  13. #13
    Cyburbian ludes98's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Planderella
    and classic board games.
    My wife and I still duke it out on Connect Four, Sorry, and Chutes and Ladders.

    Quote Originally posted by PlannerByDay
    I'm 29, and growing up never had a Nintendo, didn't have cable and had dinner with my parents at the kitchen table everynight. When people I know ask me if I watched TV shows like "Fact of Life" "Different Strokes" or other 80's programs I say NO. I was outside playing, climbing in trees, frying bugs with my magnifying glass and other kids stuff.
    That pretty well describes me, but don't forget our generation had Atari and the Commodore 64 man!! I didn't watch much TV unless it was Dukes of Hazzard or cartoons. I still don't like TV much, but I do love movies. I was a lego addict. I still own my entire collection, and I can't wait to have kids so I claim I build because my kids like it.

    I think that TV and VG's are supplanting time that used to be spent on interaction between parents and their children. I too had dinner every night with my parents. I plan on doing the same with my kids. I've said the same thing in another thread, but what about the in-car DVD/VG systems? What ever happened to playing in-car games and looking out the window? I guess watching a DVD on headphones while mommy and daddy talk on cellies is better. NOT.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Planderella's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Planderella
    classic board games.
    Only one game seems to have stood the test of time - MONOPOLY!!! This is the game that started many feuds in my family. Everyone wanted to be the banker, but no one trusted each other to play the role.

    What does everyone think of the many versions/editions of Monopoly nowadays? It seems like after the special 25th anniversary edition, I noticed that all kinds starting popping up like the Star Wars edition, the Simpsons edition, major cities have their own editions (New Orleans has one), and I've seen various university editions.
    "A witty woman is a treasure, a witty beauty is a power!"

  15. #15
    Cyburbian plankton's avatar
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    Dice games.

    My brother & I had all kinds of sports leagues based on the roll of dice. Our longlasting favorite was the simplest: An even roll (2,4,6) = win & odd roll (1,3,5) = loss. We'd set up a full NFL or MLB season & let the dice fly.

    Careers was my all time favorite board game until Stop Thief! came along. That game rocked!

  16. #16
    Cyburbian Plus
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    What about making the transition from a
    single speed to a 3-, then to 5-speed bicycle.
    Oddball
    Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves?
    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
    Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
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    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
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  17. #17
    Cyburbian the north omaha star's avatar
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    Star Wars action figures 24/7/365. I remember crying the day that Boba Fett was searching for Solo and fell in the heating vent and never came back. Budget permitting, I still try to collect some of the newer figures and some of the vehicles that I couldn't afford as a child. (Boba Fett is now worth more money than I can ever afford for a toy.)

    My mother made sure we had all the sports equipment we could ever wanted. I guess because she was and still is active in sports, especially in her company slow-pitch softball and bowling leagues.
    I am recognizing that the voice inside my head
    is urging me to be myself but never follow someone else
    Because opinions are like voices we all have a different kind". --Q-Tip

  18. #18
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    My son is not quite three years old. He don't play video games, of course. He has a kiddie computer that he fiddles with, mostly for the noises it makes. Yesterday he was fascinated for most of the day with a motorized mouse (actually a cat toy that scares the hell out of the cat). Mostly, though, he is very happy playing with a ball, leggos, his 30+ Hot Wheels and Hot Wheel knockoffs, and our dollar store water pistols. He also has long conversations with our cat, though the cat doesn't seem to pay much attention.

    As a kid, playing army or cowboys were our games. So we just needed cap guns and helmets or hats. Out the door by 7 a.m. and not back til dinner in the summer.

    As he gets older, I am sure he will want the video games and other electronic marvels. I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

  19. #19
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by the north omaha star
    Star Wars action figures 24/7/365. I remember crying the day that Boba Fett was searching for Solo and fell in the heating vent and never came back. Budget permitting, I still try to collect some of the newer figures and some of the vehicles that I couldn't afford as a child. (Boba Fett is now worth more money than I can ever afford for a toy.)

    My mother made sure we had all the sports equipment we could ever wanted. I guess because she was and still is active in sports, especially in her company slow-pitch softball and bowling leagues.
    I had the action figures too. (GEEK COMMENT: Boba Fett is still, IMHO the best Star Wars character ever).

    I was mostly a sports guy growing up. Wiffleball/baseball, football, basketball, street hockey with the neighbor's kids in the yard or at the parks.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  20. #20
    Cyburbian Duke Of Dystopia's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Planderella
    Only one game seems to have stood the test of time - MONOPOLY!!! This is the game that started many feuds in my family. Everyone wanted to be the banker, but no one trusted each other to play the role........

    your forgetting the ultimate fight starter that is still around!


    RISK


    I can't deliver UTOPIA, but I can create a HELL for you to LIVE in :)DoD:(

  21. #21
    Cyburbian Dragon's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Duke Of Dystopia
    your forgetting the ultimate fight starter that is still around!

    RISK

    You are right about that. My brother, friends, and I still have scars.

    Numerous times have I played that game, and started out being triple teamed. Not much you can do with enemies coming at you from 3 directions. I know how Germany felt. :-P
    “Ahh! Beer. So many choices. And it makes so little difference."
    - Bender

  22. #22
    Quote Originally posted by Planderella
    Only one game seems to have stood the test of time - MONOPOLY!!!
    Outstanding game, to be sure. But my favorite is SCRABBLE. Now there's a game that will start some fights
    On pitching to Stan Musial:
    "Once he timed your fastball, your infielders were in jeopardy."
    Warren Spahn

  23. #23
    Cyburbian JNL's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister
    I remember when I was a kid it was a big deal to bring certain toys to school that you could play with before/after school or at recess. I remember there were several fads - there was a big yo-yo craze and I don't know if anyone remembers 'Klackers'
    Yep I remember those days! Yoyos, klackers, marbles... they seemed to stick around for about 2 weeks then it was on to something new.

  24. #24
    Cyburbian Big Easy King's avatar
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    It seemed as if I was always riding my bike in the neighborhood. Besides that, I enjoyed Star Wars action figures and Hot Wheels cars. I also enjoyed collecting comic books and football and baseball trading cards, as well as playing Monopoly and Scrabble.
    A person who strives is one who thrives. It's GREAT to be THE KING!!!

  25. #25
    Cyburbian Tom R's avatar
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    pg ball

    Here is a variation on stick ball we used to play where I grew up in the Pittsburgh area. It was called PG Ball. The PG stands for Practice Golf. You take the standard practice golf ball (Must be perforated, the ones that were dimpled were the best. lasted longer) and wrap it with electrictian's tape (friction tape works best) in two directions. Two layers in both directions is enough. Then you scrounge for a broom or sponge mop handle and there's your game. It can be slow pitch for newbies or fast pitch with curve balls and an occasional knuckler baller for the big kids. You can play with bases or if there isn't enough room or players you set up distance markers..past the pitcher- single, past second- base a double. The ball has to hit the ground. Anything caught in the air is an out. There is also the version that borrows rules from kick ball. You play with bases but if the fielder hits a runner with the ball, he's out. Sound familiar to anyone?
    WALSTIB

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