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Happy 50th Birthday Play School - share your memories!

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#1 Lunafreya

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:25 AM

I know it's early but I though we could get this going quick.

I grew up watching Play School, grew up with the ABC in the mornings and it's almost strange to me that the show that I watched is still on and is more or less the same than when I watched.

My play school memories:
The calendar with the ramps and colored balls, loved on Fridays how you got all of them.
The episode where the dressed up in old time costumes including one of the presenters wearing a crinoline
John Hamblin and his antics, like dressing up with various wigs and in drag.
The Ning Nang Nong Song and the Three Grey Elephants Song
Watching them make dolmades, one of my favourite foods now!
Hoping the arch window is chosen!
Useful Box day, long since gone sadly as well as how play school had different days for things like animals day and let's find out day.

I had the useful book and some play school records, they've disappeared and I wished they hadn't.

My son watches play school now, he likes how I know a lot of the songs and sing them for him. We are planning to take him to Play School in concert in September.

What are you memories of Play School?

And just for us adults, here's a treat.

Edited by Masahiro Tanaka, 11 May 2016 - 10:26 AM.


Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:40 AM

When I went to a playschool in concert and my mother jumped dancing when even the kids wern't (so embarrassing) John said sternly...."this is for the kids". My mum went and Sat down.

#3 archyandmehitabel

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:54 AM

You know the Ning Nang Nong is a Spike Milligan poem :thumbs:

I have very fond memories of watching it with my kids, especially an episode in which John Hamblin and Monica Tragega doing a Sleeping Beauty story at the beach. It's starts at about 9 minutes in on the linked YouTube clip.

I took my kids to see a live show with John and Benita in a local hall about 18 years ago and the mothers were all into it more than the kids!

#4 FeralZupee

Posted 11 May 2016 - 11:09 AM

Thanks for posting the bloopers OP, even the voices took me right back!
I loved playschool, and Mum used to have it taped for me to watch.

We are living overseas atm so unfort my DD hasn't seen much of it, but I've downloaded some episodes to the ipad, and I enjoy watching them with her.

I also distinctly remember one episode when I was a kid, where the lady presenter was drawing on the man presenter's back (Noni and John maybe?). I thought it was very naughty and exciting, lol.

#5 Lesley225

Posted 11 May 2016 - 08:16 PM

I'd like a compilation video of the old days.  Play School is only a few months younger than me I probably watched until the mid to late 80s.

Just spent ages watching Playschool vids on the tube!

Would love to go and see he exhibition which is touring after the national one finishes.

#6 NunSoFeral

Posted 11 May 2016 - 08:34 PM

Oh John. You minx

#7 Box of Frogs

Posted 11 May 2016 - 08:36 PM

Looking through the windows - I always liked the arched window best

Big Ted, Little Ted, Jemima and Humpty

The rocket clock

I even had a Play School book (my aunt worked at the ABC)

My mother had a serious thing for John Waters and looking back, I can't blame her, he was a bit gorgeous. She had me trained to let her know when he was presenting.


#8 Tender Heart

Posted 11 May 2016 - 08:55 PM

I love the occasional innuendo like Rhys Muldoon telling a story about the kittens that had just been born in Procreation Place.

#9 needs to get out

Posted 11 May 2016 - 08:56 PM

I always loved Benita and John Hamblin.

Also a fan of the arch window!

Flower clock, and the music, although I now have the Rocket clock music stuck in my head.

The thing that has stuck with the longest is the phrase and song about 'The Olden Days' - when your grandma was a baby in the olden days etc.

When DS2 was very, very tiny, I watched an episode of playschool where they read this book, and I cried my eyes out.

#10 Lesley225

Posted 11 May 2016 - 08:59 PM

Didn't they wear short shorts back in the day!

#11 Feral Grey Mare

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:03 PM

I remember the black and white episodes with Lorraine Bayley, Alistair, Don Spencer (Danielle Spencer's dad) and Anne Haddy (later to be in Neighbours).

#12 needs to get out

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:10 PM

View PostFeral Grey Mare, on 11 May 2016 - 09:03 PM, said:

I remember the black and white episodes with Lorraine Bayley, Alistair, Don Spencer (Danielle Spencer's dad) and Anne Haddy (later to be in Neighbours).

I loved Lorraine too!

Remember well when we got a colour TV, and watching Play School.

Just remembered my Dad wrote some kind of thesis on Play School when I was in grade 1 or 2, and I remember going to the WA Institute of Technology (now Curtin Uni) with him and watching taped episodes in some little observation room.

I must ask him for the details of that, lol.

#13 Box of Frogs

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:11 PM

Now I've got the Elephant Song in my head

One grey elephant balancing
Step by step on a piece of string
He thought it was such a wonderful stunt
So he called for another elephant

Etc etc

#14 needs to get out

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:13 PM

And was it Warren? who played the piano? I always liked when they cut to the piano guy.

#15 Kiwi Bicycle

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:16 PM

I must admit it's fun watching the current Oz version and comparing it to the NZ version I watched as a child. We had Manu the Maori girl doll, but all the other characters were the same except Humpty was green coloured and Jemima had orange wool hair.

I remember the blue and black opening credits of the house with Play School written in it.

The lady with long blonde hair and the brown knee high boots I soo wanted.

The brown clock with a blue face with I think moon phases on it. (no, it turns out it was clock gears).Posted Image

Lots of NZ author's books being read like Magaret Mahy, Joy Cowely etc.

Apparently they stopped making the NZ version in 1990.
Here's a link showing the NZ versions toys.

#16 nicebitch

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:20 PM

The rocket clock was my fav!

#17 hills mum bec

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:56 PM

I loved play school as a kid.  Noni, Benita, Don & John were my favourites.  I named all my toys after the play school toys, Jemima, Hamble, Big Ted & Little Ted.  I loved the arch window & the rocket clock.  I couldn't wait to see what was behind the clock for that day (do they still do the clock on play school?).  I loved it when they made stuff out of boxes or when they did anything with water.  I had a Play School cassette that mum used to play in the car for me when we dropped Dad off at work every morning, I was devastated when our car was broken into & the tape player was stolen (it was a portable one that plugged into the cigarette lighter) with my tape inside it.  Mum replaced it with a Sesame Street tape but it wasn't the same.

#18 dadwasathome

Posted 11 May 2016 - 09:57 PM

Old enough to remember when they had the uk version in the morning and Aussie in the afternoon.

Too, too many memories over the decades. Still worth an occasional look :)

#19 Lucrezia Bauble

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:13 PM

Loving these memories!

It was so so good.

Ds1 loved it - he loved "through the Windows" - but his absolute fave, because he was going through a bus craze was the Boggabilla bus - his grandad made him a wooden bus and it has "Boggabilla Bus" written on it.

Edited by Lucrezia Borgia, 11 May 2016 - 10:17 PM.

#20 PooksLikeChristmas

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:16 PM

I saw Don Spencer in concert. "Sheep are cute, sheep are beaut, sheep are soft and curly, but when I take them into town I have to start up early, coz they never go the way I want so I need someone to help me, I just give a whistle, and I call on Bob the Kelpie". Or something like that!

I remember my little sister watching it more than myself, and the songs. DS loves the songs I come out with, there's one for every occasion :p

#21 Lunafreya

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:34 PM

I remember Alistair showing his farm and feeding his sheep (or was it cows?) hay and molasses and ate some himself.

Tricia in a video putting her baby to bed.

Phillip getting a fake beard like a bush ranger, which I thought was like Ranger Tim from Agro and worked with animals

More songs:
My hat it has three corners
Where did you get that hat?
Put your finger in your nose
The black cat
Upside down town
Standing on one leg
Do your ears hang low?
Warm kitty, soft kitty (yes it started here and went to BBT!)

#22 Navy Blue Ladybird

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:35 PM

Hamble! The rocket clock (especially the music), John and Benita.

Now they have a different clock with different music and they got rid of the trippy "through the window" sound and visual effects.

They have an awesome cardboard washing machine now though!

I always liked Alastair! Now I like Jay and Zindze.

#23 Lunafreya

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:39 PM

I've met Jay a few times, he's a lot of fun. He had a straw basket box that asked if it was his useful box.

#24 yellowtulips74

Posted 11 May 2016 - 10:52 PM

I loved Alistair. And John Waters. I liked Jan Kingsbury too.

Songs I remember:

How does a caterpillar go?
Dear me, does anybody know?....

Look at me I'm a train on a track...

Put a spot over here and a spot over there,
Put a spot on your ear and a spot in your hair...

Changes, changes, everywhere.
But if you sit and stare
You stay the same........

#25 Lesley225

Posted 12 May 2016 - 06:06 AM

I used to like Henry and Henrietta the mice.

I wonder what the Australian Playschool has that has meant it continues much loved when NZ (didn't know they had one) and the original in the UK all ended?

Edited by Lesley225, 12 May 2016 - 06:08 AM.

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