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Students will develop a sense of self in relation to families and community as they rewrite a classical nursery rhyme.
One per class:
The goal for students in Content Standard II is that they develop a sense of self in relation to families and community. As students form relationships with their family and with one another, they draw upon common experiences to strengthen those relationships. One common bond that can strengthen relationships in the family and at school is literature. Traditional forms of literature that we can share are nursery rhymes and folk tales. Nursery rhymes are lyrical passages that can be shared between members of a family. Usually a parent recites nursery rhymes to young children. By reciting nursery rhymes, oral traditions are passed down. Through this time spent together, bonds between a parent and a child can be strengthened. These important lessons help us build and strengthen the relationships in our families and community. Many students have experiences with these traditional literature forms at home. At school, we can expand their knowledge and build classroom relationships.
During this activity, the students will rewrite a classical nursery rhyme as a class. The students will have the opportunity to recite/read the nursery rhyme, discover the pattern of the text, and duplicate and extend that pattern to rewrite the nursery rhyme. As the rhymes are rewritten, the class will perform the original or rewritten version of the nursery rhyme.
2. Develop social skills and ethical responsibility
3. Demonstrate responsible emotional and cognitive behaviors.
6. Communicate clearly in oral, artistic, written and nonverbal form.
Invitation to Learn
Begin chanting the nursery rhyme Jack and Jill. Invite the students who know the rhyme to join in. Ask the class if they have heard this nursery rhyme. What rhythm or beat pattern do they feel? Tell the students that during the next week the class will be reciting nursery rhymes and finding the pattern of the rhythm in the rhymes. The class will also have the opportunity to write its own nursery rhyme and perform it in the form of a puppet show.
Rewriting other nursery rhymes may be used as extensions for this activity. The same format that was used to rewrite “Jack and Jill” is followed for other nursery rhymes. As the students identify the character, setting, problem, and resolution for each nursery rhyme, they are practicing important skills from the language arts core curriculum. Students are also using skills that will strengthen phonological awareness and writing skills. Of course, the rhythm/beat pattern is always emphasized.
All students may participate in this activity. Because it is teacher directed, students with varying skills in mathematics and language arts will be successful.
By participating in the class recitation of the nursery rhyme(s) and through participation in the puppet show, a teacher can assess the students level of knowledge of rhythmic patterning and knowledge of spatial relationships. The teacher may assemble the rewritten nursery rhyme that the class composes in a book format. The original form of the nursery rhyme may also be included to compare and contrast the two versions. Each student can illustrate the pages of the rewritten nursery rhyme and the original version. This book may be included in the student’s portfolio where it may be examined by the teacher and parents.