Friday, March 20, 2015

Year 5: Week 27 – Tales of The Third Grade Nothing

But. . . .

My 3rd graders have been working on adding musical sounds to the book Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. It’s been a really fun project so we decided to prepare this activity for a performance. While rehearsing this song, one student asked “ Mr. Tang, "what do after 'but'?" referring to a part in the book. First there was a single giggle and before I knew it there uproarious laughter throughout the room. After seeing that this girl who asked this question was laughing, I allowed myself to laugh at the fact that she said “but.”

I calmed everyone down and explained that after “but” I would cue them and they would play their instruments for three beats. Then I said “Let’s practice what happens after ‘but'.” All the students were completely quiet looking up at me, and then I couldn’t help it cracked a smile and we all erupted in laughter one more time.

What do he have against pants?

We are learning songs from the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat in 3rd grade. Our curriculum focuses on the way that music can help tell stories and after finding out that the 7th grade choir was studying broadway music the idea came up that my 3rd graders could perform with the 7th graders. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is a perfect musical for this project. The songs are catchy, the show tell a great stories and there are children choir parts in the original music.

I wanted to show them clips from the musical to help them understand the songss, so earlier this week I showed them the film version of “Close Every Door.”

All of my students started watching with very serious expressions on their face as I explained the injustice of this moment in Joseph’s life, but as the scene started unfolding, little giggles started spreading throughout the class.

“What is he wearing?”
“Where is his shirt?”
“What does he have against pants?”

I explained that the story was set in Egypt and it is very hot over there and what he is wearing is the Egyptian version of shorts. Also, I pointed out that part of this story had to do with the fact that he once had an elaborate colored coat which made him happy and the simple clothing he wore represented his sad feelings.

I started the clip again, most of kids were calm, but a couple girls just could not stop giggling as the shirt-less Donny Osmond was working his charm. Yes, they were missing the point of the video, but I didn’t choose wisely by showing them this clip. So I simply enjoyed the sound of their cute giggles.

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