Duck Duck Grayduck

What is Duck Duck Grayduck?


The Minnesota name for what Wisconsin kids call "Duck Duck Goose". A children's game loosely based on "tag" in which kids (usually in gym class), sit in a circle, while one person, who is "it" walks around the circle tapping the other kids on the head while saying "Duck... Duck... Duck..." After a reasonable period of suspense is built, the kid who is "it" selects one of the sitting kids to challenge, and calls out "Grayduck!" (or "Goose" in Wisconsin) as their head is tapped.

The "Grayduck" must now stand as quickly as possible and attempt to catch the kid who is "it". If he/she fails to catch "it" before "it" is fully seated in the Grayduck's vacated spot after running around the circle at least once, the Grayduck becomes "it" for the next round. If the Grayduck successfully catches the one who called them "Grayduck" before they are seated, the Grayduck sits back down in the circle, while the person who is "it" has to try again and, in theory, pick somebody slower.

Slower, fatter, less athletic kids therefore have a higher likelihood of becoming the Grayduck/Goose. Variations include having the caught "it" person sit down in the center of the circle until they are replaced, thus subjecting them to unspoken ridicule by their peers rather than forcing them to continue running in circles for the rest of the class period.

The game teaches kids valuable lessons like stereotypes and exclusion, and also how to put those traits to work to your own advantage by singling out the weak in order to reduce your own effort.

If you're from Wisconsin and think this should be filed under "Duck Duck Goose", please see the UD entry under "bite me".

Q: "Why's that fat kid all sweaty?"

A: "He was 'it' in Duck Duck Grayduck for the entire class period because he can't run to save his life."

See tag, gym, games


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