Primary school was a simpler, better time to be alive.

No Facebook, no ‘certs’ of any kind to worry for years to come and no sense of dread at the future of becoming old and frail… being in your twenties is just great isn’t it.

Apart from Letterland and the odd video here and there, we don’t remember that much of what was happening inside the classroom.

To be fair, how could you when there was so many iconic trends going around at the time to occupy that sacred half an hour respite we would get during the day.

Let us take a gallop down memory lane and reminisce over some of the best trends of the time, shall we?

Pokemon Cards

In the early 2000s and belong, Pokemon was everywhere!!

School bags, games and even a masterpiece of a TV show but nothing compared to the magic of cards at lunchtime.

There was a certain time where your reputation in school directly correlated to the size of your deck of Pokemon cards.

Little did we know, there’s actually a game to play with these (all those ‘Energy’ cards actually did something!) but you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who knew how to play it.

Did we care? Not in the slightest! We spent all of our pocket money on these just to trade them away, and we loved it.


It’s amazing to think of now the thrills and enjoyment we could get out of something so small and insignificant.

Marbles were the schoolyard of equivalent of poker back in the day though. Two children enter, putting their most valuable marble on the line in a winner-takes-all encounter.

The variety of them really added to the appeal too. Who remembers smallies, mediums, gulliers and even window-smashers?

It seems antiquated now, but if you don’t remember the childhood thrill of winning a heated game of marbles with all of your peers watching on, we don’t think you’ve actually lived.


It was a bit anti-social in a way, but you’d still find dozens of childrens with their Game Boys out at lunchtime every day.

The games were simple, primitive and you’d rarely find someone with the wealth to have one of those link cables to actually let you play with a friend.

Regardless, this was cutting edge technology back at the time. Especially with the introduction of the ‘SP’ edition which was probably as cool as you’d get for a lad back in the day.

They’ve been since forgotten about and put to one side, but we guarantee you’d easily sink into a few hours of nostalgic joy if you took yours out of the attic today.

Flip Phones

Back when giving a child a phone wasn’t exposing them to the cesspool that was the entire contents of the internet, phones were wholesome fun for kids 15 years ago.

Sure what else do you need when your in primary school apart from Snake, some dodgy wallpapers and the ability to Bluetooth your favourite chunes to your mates.

However, it was flip phone that eventually became the ultimate symbol of class when it hit the Irish markets sometime in the 2000s.

Gone were the days of the humble Nokia; if you’re phone didn’t extravangtly flip up everytime you had to use it, you were nobody. That was simply the way it was.


Similar to its Japanese mate Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh cards and its cartoon companion swept schoolyards around the country as kids traded away their parents hard earned cash.

The monsters, the magic card and the traps all stood out though for one important reason; we actually knew how to play the game.

Many matches would inevitably be interrupted by the lunchtime bell but we still tried anyway, because there was one companion piece that made it all worth the while. 

The ‘Duel-disc’

Was it impractical? Yes. Was it essentially an over-priced piece of plastic? Yes. Was it amazing for anybody under the age of 12. Absolutely.

Super S

There’s not really a lot to say about the fabled ‘Super-S’. I mean, it’s just a letter at the end of the day.

However, this simple letter was drawn everywhere. Every pencil case, every school book and copy. Looking back, it’s actually kind of incredible how widespread it was.

You could also upgrade it to a 3-D version if you were feeling particularly daring or just mindlessly bored during an Irish version.

We prefer the original version though. An iconic design and a symbol of a simpler time gone by.

Gel Pens

There was a certain hierarchy that was followed when it came to primary school stationery.

Firstly, you started with pencils and it would be a glorious day when you finally were trusted with the burden of responsibility that was writing with a simple pen.

However, eventually that wasn’t enough of an adrenaline rush and you’d have to resort to the multi-coloured maestros that were gel pens.

Is it really necessary to do your Irish homework with magenta-coloured ink. Probably not but sure it looked good at the time?

Let’s just not talk about the guy who would end up with a pencil case full of ones that were just ‘borrowed’… and if you were this person, you should take a good, hard look at yourself.

Match Attax

Wow, we just loved buying lots of paper and then just trading it away?

Match Attax though were special for any young boy following the Premier League at the time. The excitement of finding a ‘Man of the Match’ card in your packet was unlike anything else.

To be honest though, we’d put a little bit of the blame on our gambling culture at the door of Match Attax when you think about it.

After all, we were buying these cards with a chance we would get a Steven Gerrard or a Cristiano Ronaldo.

Nobody wanted a Nicklas Bendtner, or a Danny Murphy but that was just the risk that we took.

Soulja Boy

If you didn’t feel old already, surely the sight of this guy should. 

Soulja Boy Tell ‘Em, to give him his full and official title, was a rapper who took the world by storm with his hit ‘Crank That’.

Before you knew it, everybody was trying to do that dance around school with widely varying degrees of success. How it became as iconic as it did remains one of life’s greatest unsolved mysteries.

Despite being relatively unheard of since the days of ‘Crank That’, Soulja Boy today is worth $423 million due to his other ventures. Life is truly crazy sometimes…