Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Skip to My Lou (Hello, How Are You?)

Learn the names of the children beforehand or ask three students what their names are. Then sing, "Hello, Cindy, how are you? Hello, David, how are you? Hello, Kayla, how are you? Skip to my lou my darlin'" clapping the beat of the last bit and waving at each student as they are named--all to the tune of Skip to My Lou, of course. I did this one with many groups and they love it (kindergarten or first grade--probably not so effective with sixth graders). Another variation is to then let those three skip around the circle while everyone sings "Skip with me, I'll skip with you . . . etc." I learned this variation from Susan Kenney who, I believe, picked it up from the ETM folks. Yet another variation is with all students in groups of threes singing the names of each child in their group and then holding hands and skipping in a circle on the Skip with me, I'll skip with you part. Or, better yet, make up your own variation. I remember singing this timeless folk song in third grade back in the 70s--just singing it in class with no games but with a variety of verses. (Flies in the buttermilk, shoo fly shoo; Little red wagon painted blue; Lost my partner what'll I do; I'll find another one, it might be you). My students at Eureka Elementary enjoyed making up their own verses that rhymed (I found a stink bug in my shoe; We left my sister at the zoo, etc.). You know, it can be a lot of fun to just play the guitar and sing with kids. An important thing is to avoid getting caught up in whether you are doing it right or not--whether you are following the method or the rules of the game correctly. I was worried once about remembering the tune of a song learned at a workshop and someone suggested that if I forgot I could just make up my own tune. Good advice . . .

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