Poetry you can sing.

We had poetry class today using “Down by the bay,” which none of my students knew.

Down by the bay
where the watermelons grow
back to my home
I dare not go.
For if I do
my mother will say,
“Did you ever see a bear
combing his hair
down by the bay?”

We came up with:
sheep driving a jeep
seal cooking a meal
fish washing a dish
whale checking his mail
cat wearing a hat
pig dancing a jig
llamas sporting pajamas (I did have to explain the use of sporting there.)
bee drinking his tea
yak sitting on a tack
mice picking at lice

It was fun.

Then we tried to change the beginning part.

with honey buns, … I dare not run
where I got my groove… I dare not move
with a blackberry pie… I dare not fly

This section was not as fun, but we did it and enjoyed it.

We also learned the words to “Yankee Doodle.” (Only one student knew it.) Then we wrote lines for the verses of the song. They were supposed to compose three for their homework.

Yankee Doodle went to town
riding on a lion.
The lion ate old Yankee up
without any frying.

Yankee Doodle had a coat
that was black and pretty.
His conversations, short and long,
showed he was very witty.

Mother and I went to the mall
and bought a million shoes.
When we were at the big shoe shop
we found we couldn’t choose.

Those were mine.

The kids enjoyed it immensely. We are going to do “Take me out to the ball game,” “On top of old smokey,” and “I’ve been working on the railroad” next week.

Thanks for the ideas, Bruce Lansky.