Childhood version 1.0: what kids did for fun before the internet

Carrots on sticks

No you’re eyes aren’t deceiving you, these kids are lusting after carrots. During WW2, when sugar was rationed, carrots on sticks were the treat du jour. Some children grew up not knowing what ice cream was until the end of the war when rationing stopped. [Photo: British Pathé/Youtube]

Before Harambe

Back when animals could get close to kids and not get murdered. [Photo:]

Swing version 1.0

Amazing what you can do with a lampost and some rope. Of course behaviour like this nowadays would earn you a tidy little ASBO. [Photo: Incredible London]

Simple pleasures

Who needs a seven quid Minion balloon anyway? [Friedrich-Seidenstücker]

Splintery slides

Back in the day before playgrounds were regulated and planks of wood were called slides and you got to take home souvineer splinters in your bum. [Photo: Pinterest]

Next level hide and seek skills

The best vantage point to shoot your enemies in a politcially incorrect game of cowboys and Indians? A manhole of course. [Photo:]

Where the cool kids at?

Before mobiles the coolest place to hang out was the phone box making reverse charge calls to your mum. []

Stilts in tailored outfits

Not even cuban heels can stop this pair! [Photo: Tumblr]

Playing out

Tiny children hung around in packs on street corners all day long without a parent in sight. [Photo: Vintage Photos Online]

Viral potential

Before funny animal vids kids just had animals. [Photo: Flickr]

Organised fun

When owning a car was a luxuray reserved for the rich, the roads were clearer and safer to play in. [Photo: Flickr]


At one point in time someone somewhere knew the rules to hopscotch… [Photo: Pinterest]

Who’s the mummy?

Baby Annabelle can do one. A couple of neighbourhood kids and a wheelbarrow is far more fun. [Photo: Pinterest]

Pond dipping

The joys of harrassing local pondlife. [Photo: Tumblr]

Before smartphones and the internet with it’s pacifying supply of games and funny videos, kids had to make their own entertainment. And guess what? Sometimes they experienced boredom too but that boredom gave way to inventive games and unsupervised adventures.

Children will always find a way to play no matter the circumstances; their innate ability to suspend disbelief means it doesn’t take much to get swept up in imaginary worlds of epic proportions. So what were the children of yesteryear doing before Minecraft, Youtube and Snapchat? Let’s take a look.

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