Thursday, February 9, 2012

Singin' About the Food Chain

I developed this lesson for and with my son's class when he was in second grade. I played my guitar to accompany the singing. They loved the activity! And, the students remembered the song years after we sang it and wrote the original verses together in class.

Objectives: All students will adapt facts about the food chain as verses for the song, Skip to My Lou (see attachment) and create a rhythmic accompaniment to their verse using body percussion.

Standards: Music—Improvise simple rhythmic accompaniments; Science—Food Chains

Preparation: Food Chain handout or projected image (information about food chains and webs for students to read)

Anticipatory Set: Echo rhythms
Teaching (input, model, check for understanding, individual and group practice, etc.)
  • Give the students the food chain handout and read the first section together
  • Sing the food chain chorus for the students (to the tune of Skip to My Lou)
Food chain, food chain, food chain
Food chain, food chain, food chain
Food chain, food chain, food chain
Singin’ about the food chain.
  • Invite the students to sing along
  • Demonstrate and have the students imitate the actions for the song (roll arms until the last word of the line and then touch side of face with right hand and left hand to right elbow end of each line, clap the rhythm on the last line)
  • As a class, make up a verse that has a sentence from the food chain handout (such as “Carnivores eat only meat”) repeated three times and followed by “Singin’ about the food chain.”
  • As a class, add a repeated body percussion pattern along with the verse.
  • Divide the class into groups and have them each come up with a verse and a rhythm accompaniment for it. Maybe give each group a different part of the food chain to define.
Closure: Perform the food chain. Have each group perform their verse. At the beginning have all the students sing the chorus and then repeat the chorus after each verse.

Extension: Write down all of the verses and the chorus and repeat the song during subsequent class periods.

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