Educational CyberPlayGround

Indigenous Folksong Reading Curriculum Sample Time Line and Introduction

Listen and find the music of the text (speech)

Through the music find the rhythm

Through the rhythm you will understand the meaning of the words . . .



To successfully and meaningfully motivate the students, it is in the SPIRIT of SHARING that the transfer of information will happen. By starting with childhood play and games, we are all cast back into the landscape and soundscape of our past. Once you have established a relaxed atmosphere and the student's trust, you can move into the Interactive Folksong Reading Curriculum Module. Look for examples of playgrond poetry that explain the sequence of events in life, which naturally leads to storytelling. And if done well, can comfort children by explaining the interrelatedness of all things, while discussing diversity among the students in your class.

Classroom Teachers --

You can suggest that all the same grade teachers as yourself participate in this module at the same time. Then the music and art teachers can block out their schedule to work with everyone on this interdisciplinary unit. The benefit for you is to be able to discuss what's happening amongst youselves. But, this is not necessary - only a suggestion. You may also want to contact others from your district High School who can also get involved and help you out. Get a tape recorder.

Music Teachers --

Will help you with the collection of the playground music, help you learn to use the echo - body work technique and to rhythmically and melodically notate the songs and chants. They can reinforce reading readiness skills with ear training using the echo work from chanting and melodic syllables of the songs - once they have been taught them by the children. They can reinforce all this with rounds, and body work using the voice snap -clapping - patchen - stamping and instruments. Music teachers can reinforce using technology by entering the rhythms and melodies into the computer MIDI program for submission to The Children's Folksong Repository, or sample the chants and melodies as real audio files directly through the computer.

Art Teachers --

Will help distribute paper for children to draw pictures of their favorite song with the songs' words written next to the pictures. The paper can be a huge 6 foot scroll that gets filled in with lots of drawings. This work is then hung on the corridor walls outside the room for all the children to see as they wait in a line to get a drink of water from the fountain. They will notice the pictures and understand what has been written there and also think they are capable of reading the words since they already know the poetry by heart.

Media / Technology Teachers /Audio Visual Department --

Should be contacted in your school and in the District's High School to arrange to have 12th graders who are in the independent study class to bring the video cameras to the elementary school's classroom and tape the children's performance of their favorite song or chant. They can then take this back to their own school to submit this to the website for the archive. The talented technology student can also help the teacher upload to this site.

Librarians / Media or Technology Specialists --

Should help you submit the information online. The talented high school technology student can also help the teacher upload to this site. The student or Specialist can help make sure you can connect to this site, navigate it, enter the songs, see what other teachers have submitted, make sure your project is successful. Everyone needs to help each other to make sure no one gets frustrated and shoots the computer!

The most important part is to have fun, and try to let the kids teach you their poetry. You'll be amazed at the amount of stuff they know by heart, how complicated all the moves are, and how thrilled they will be to teach you! This is really why the method works -- they are so motivated to teach you !! This evolves into an experience that all children realize shows mutual respect, that gives children a sense of dignity. When you are willing to receive something from them and give it value (cause you want to know it) they are willing to learn something from you. A true Sharing gives this process a kind of authenticity of needing to know. It is relevant and will build a bridge from their dialect to Standard English.

The First Week


#1 -- Board Work
"Which is Which"

This is an example of making everyone aware that there are two ways of speaking. One is called Standard English the other is called Dialect. The teacher must write examples of each exactly as it is said and pronounced.

This is a game we played. I wrote 5 pairs of sentences on the board then asked the children to just look at each one, while I read it outloud. I asked them to identify each sentence as Dialect or as Standard English.


Where are my shoes? - Standard English

Where does be my shoes dem? - Dialect

We practiced with sentences like this excercise everyday until I felt that they had really caught on.



The importance of knowing that one is called the standard and one is called the dialect , is that, by making this distinction everyone was made aware of naming a language - their language - and this idea is very important.

"Indigenous Folksong Reading Curriculum"

Persons saying it cannot be done should not interfere with persons doing it. ~ Proverb

The Indigenous Folksong Reading Curriculum, National Children's Folksong Repository and the Educational CyberPlayground Web site supports all the teachers and students from elementary through High School who work with this module.






From: Elise Longoria
I love your sight and wish to use it with a new class I'm developing called Sound, Rhythm and Reading:  A music-integrated reading curriculum. 

Elise Longoria
Music Educator