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Monroeton Preschool's "Down by the Bay" (with help from Raffi)

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Keywords: rhyming, preschool, early learning
Subject(s): Early Learning, Special Needs, English/Language Arts, Speech and Language
Grade P-K
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
View Full Text of Standards
School: Monroeton Elementary School, Reidsville, NC
Planned By: Melissa Fulcher
Original Author: Melissa Fulcher, Reidsville
Objectives: Children will rhyme words.

Materials: -Music with Raffi singing "Down by the Bay"
-Book, "Down by the Bay" by Nadine Bernard Wescott
-Toy cat, dog, sheep, and mouse

Procedure: Introduce the song "Down by the Bay" to the students about a week before doing this activity to familiarize the students with the song. Once the students know the song well, read the book, "Down by the Bay" by Nadine Bernard Wescott, as a large group activity to the students. Explain to the students what the bay is and what "I dare not go" means since these terms may be unfamiliar to preschool/special education students. The illustrations in the book will help the students get a clearer picture of what the song is about, as well as the humor in the story.

After reading the story, display the toy cat, dog, sheep, and mouse and explain that as a class they will come up with new funny verses for "Down by the Bay". Once they have figured out what the new verses will be, students will use a digital camera to take pictures of themselves acting out the verses in the classroom to be printed out and displayed in a picture storybook to be shared with families and the school.

*Teachers will help guide the students thinking to ensure proper rhyming abilities. Teachers will also help students think about the humor of the real song. Examples of other animals besides the ones provided, will be given, such as a pig dancing with a wig, in order to help children gain understanding.

Once children have determined the new verses that rhyme and fit the criteria for humor (i.e. my students laugh hysterically at their own verses), the next day they will begin acting out and making the song come "alive" in order to photograph.

Special Education Adaptations: Props of animals will be provided and sign language for each animal will be used. A book of sign language will be close by to refer the words students rhyme. Special education students will fully participate in making and acting out of verses.

Evaluation of Activity: Students will be evaluated by how well they rhyme words and determine humor given the example of "Down by the Bay" and the illustrations given in the book.

Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Students can learn more about bays and other types of bodies of water. Documentation of the areas surrounding ponds (including the one at the school) can be observed for types of living creatures to extend on science activities. Use of the digital camera and printer will help students compare and contrast living creatures in this pond compared to other bodies of water, such as the ocean.
Once this activity is complete, the teacher can look into making this activity into either a "Photostory" or Voicethread. Collaboration with the schools media specialist will be needed in order to complete this.
Materials: Video Cameras, Flash Memory Camcorders, Flip Video, Digital Cameras, Point and Shoot, CDs and DVDs, Printers, Camera/Video Accessories, Camera Bags, Flash/USB Drives, Tripods, Batteries, Memory Cards, Early Learning, Speech and Language