The text focuses on the issue of children’s games as it was regarded and processed by Czech ethnologists - folklorists and ethnographers. On the basis of the analysis of the development in opinions concerning children’s games, it deals with the question of defining the term. It therefore provides an answer to the question: what phenomena were denoted by ethnologists by the term „children’s game“ ? The conception o f children’s game in ethnology basically offers two dimensions. The first is ^presented by the folklorist conception which sees children’s plays as a folkloric genre. Its conception consequently links two directions: that of folklore and that of genre. In the first case, the field has boundaries which are clearly set. Children’s folkloric games can only be such as have a fixed form and - at the same time - exist in variations, as are a product of collective production and are supported by a tradition. However, in formulating the genre’s specificities, ethnologistsfolklore specialists grope. The only characteristic which applies to all children’s folklore plays is the game’s rules and the game’s figures. Verbal folklorists who have embraced the conception of children’s play as a drama see the game’s rules and the game’s figures as a dramatic plot, by means of which another identity dictated by the game is assumed. Nonetheless, the folklorist conception makes a selective choice out of a wide repertoire of children’s game activities. On the other hand, the ethnographic conception treats children’s games from the perspective of their functions. From their perspective, the game is in principle identical with the terms “entertainment, amusement”. Ethnologists close to the ethnographical conception interpret children’s game in the context of social life (social communication). They evaluate its educational function only marginally, although it is surprisingly often that this function of children’s games is emphasized in ethnological texts. Folkloristic and ethnographic conceptions are connected together merely by the view that children’s games are an expression of children’s culture. This culture is then seen as specific in the context of the society’s culture on the whole. Cultural phenomena of children’s culture bear cultural contents which are only valid within children’s culture or which are conceived as outdated, residual, with a lower cultural impact.