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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 04:35 PM
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The memories are fuzzy but i can remember my grandmother driving a hulking beast of a car that had this weird contraption for playing music in it. And when I'd always ask her to play Johnny Horton for me so i could sing along to his song about the War of 1812 (the part about putting the cannonball in the alligator and lighting his behind was my favorite!), she'd jam this huge plastic cassette into the dash and hit the button in the middle to skip to the right section for my song.

Turns out THAT was an 8 track player I guess.

Luckily they had been supplanted by regular cassette tapes by the time I got my first car...which was a Camaro, and yes i had a mullet (they were required for Camaro ownership back then).
That song by Johnny Horton was called "The Battle of New Orleans." I used it every year as one of my MUSIC AND LYRICS projects that I did with my classes. I was a reading teacher and my job was to motivate struggling readers to actually read, rather than just looking at the page and pretending. That was one of the many "story songs" (as I called them) that I used -- to get kids interested in reading. They got quite a charge out of reading that song once they figured out what it said about the alligator... keep in mind, not ONE of my 13 year old munchkins had ever heard it. Like so many other songs from the good old days, it told a story and had a little humor in it as well. This made a huge difference in their desire to read the things I put in front of them each day. Great memories, but alas those days are long gone as I'm a retiree now.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 06:41 PM Thread Starter
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That song by Johnny Horton was called "The Battle of New Orleans." I used it every year as one of my MUSIC AND LYRICS projects that I did with my classes. I was a reading teacher and my job was to motivate struggling readers to actually read, rather than just looking at the page and pretending. That was one of the many "story songs" (as I called them) that I used -- to get kids interested in reading. They got quite a charge out of reading that song once they figured out what it said about the alligator... keep in mind, not ONE of my 13 year old munchkins had ever heard it. Like so many other songs from the good old days, it told a story and had a little humor in it as well. This made a huge difference in their desire to read the things I put in front of them each day. Great memories, but alas those days are long gone as I'm a retiree now.
Now that you mention it I seem to remember my 5th grade teacher did the same thing, and I can vividly remember singing along when she played the song and having everyone in the class looking at me all weird and stuff cause i knew the song and sing along...come to think of it, that's probably where everything starting going so wrong...they laughed at me, i cried, they laughed harder, i cried, they kept laughing...but they weren't laughing when i...well, nevermind, there' a statute of limitation still in effect

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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 09:20 PM
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That song by Johnny Horton was called "The Battle of New Orleans." I used it every year as one of my MUSIC AND LYRICS projects that I did with my classes. I was a reading teacher and my job was to motivate struggling readers to actually read, rather than just looking at the page and pretending. That was one of the many "story songs" (as I called them) that I used -- to get kids interested in reading. They got quite a charge out of reading that song once they figured out what it said about the alligator... keep in mind, not ONE of my 13 year old munchkins had ever heard it. Like so many other songs from the good old days, it told a story and had a little humor in it as well. This made a huge difference in their desire to read the things I put in front of them each day. Great memories, but alas those days are long gone as I'm a retiree now.
Thanks for the share Gary! Sounds like you were/are a pretty cool Dad. I take it you were born before the 2nd British invasion...AKA the Beatles?


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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 04:06 AM
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You guys must be younger than I. I can remember my Grandfathers 57 Desoto which had a factory record player and swivel bucket seats. The record player was in the glove compartment, it played only 45 rpm records. I believe the swivel bucket seats were the precursor to the easy exit option currently available with the Tazer.
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 05:16 AM
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Thanks for the share Gary! Sounds like you were/are a pretty cool Dad. I take it you were born before the 2nd British invasion...AKA the Beatles?
Born in '55 sir. Beatles? One day my girlfriend Denise announced that she had a new boyfriend. My 7 year old heart was broken. She said his name was Paul, and she led me upstairs to a little room to meet him. It was completely empty except for a record player in the middle of the floor. She showed me an album cover and pointed him out. I was relieved that she had a crush on a grown-up and not an actual boyfriend. Her older brother Chris had his own record player and records and everything. We were too poor for such things, so this was the first time I'd heard the Beatles. I loved them from day one.
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 05:49 AM
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Now that you mention it I seem to remember my 5th grade teacher did the same thing, and I can vividly remember singing along when she played the song and having everyone in the class looking at me all weird and stuff cause i knew the song and sing along...come to think of it, that's probably where everything starting going so wrong...they laughed at me, i cried, they laughed harder, i cried, they kept laughing...but they weren't laughing when i...well, nevermind, there' a statute of limitation still in effect
I didn't invent the concept, but I perfected it for my use. When I began, I had a hard time getting ALL my readers to read the lyrics of the song. I played it out loud and asked each to read the words. I got maybe 60 percent participation. After a year of failed attempts to get EVERYONE reading the "projects" as I called them, I decided to try something new. I left out a word every three lines or so and asked them to fill them in as they listened. I made it a competition and declared those who got 'em all filled in my "lyrics masters." They earned skittles (which were universally loved) for completion. At the end of the skittles ceremony, I announced that it was legal to steal and copy answers and that they could get up out of their seats and run to the nearest lyrics master to so. It was kaos for a few moments but they loved it. Little did they know that this was a teaching strategy called collaboration and was actually recommended by the school. Here's a copy of part of one of those projects:

"Wind Beneath My Wings"
1. It must have been cold there in my *__ __ __ __ __ __,
to never have sunlight on your face.
__ __ __ were content to let me shine, that's your way.
You always walked a step behind.
2. So I was the one with all the __ __ __ __ __,
while you were the one with all the strength.
A beautiful face __ __ __ __ __ __ __ a name for so long.
A beautiful smile to hide the pain.

Afterwards I asked them to share out their thoughts about the story in the song. Then the questions began. This is how I tested their comprehension. I had 10-15 questions about the meaning of the song that they had to answer. This was their test.

They loved these things, but alas, after awhile, the school demanded that I use only school approved materials to teach. We had to go back to bored, disinterested readers who only pretended to read and couldn't comprehend.

Part of the reason I decided to retire early.

Gary

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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 08:31 AM Thread Starter
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I didn't invent the concept, but I perfected it for my use. When I began, I had a hard time getting ALL my readers to read the lyrics of the song. I played it out loud and asked each to read the words. I got maybe 60 percent participation. After a year of failed attempts to get EVERYONE reading the "projects" as I called them, I decided to try something new. I left out a word every three lines or so and asked them to fill them in as they listened. I made it a competition and declared those who got 'em all filled in my "lyrics masters." They earned skittles (which were universally loved) for completion. At the end of the skittles ceremony, I announced that it was legal to steal and copy answers and that they could get up out of their seats and run to the nearest lyrics master to so. It was kaos for a few moments but they loved it. Little did they know that this was a teaching strategy called collaboration and was actually recommended by the school. Here's a copy of part of one of those projects:

"Wind Beneath My Wings"
1. It must have been cold there in my *__ __ __ __ __ __,
to never have sunlight on your face.
__ __ __ were content to let me shine, that's your way.
You always walked a step behind.
2. So I was the one with all the __ __ __ __ __,
while you were the one with all the strength.
A beautiful face __ __ __ __ __ __ __ a name for so long.
A beautiful smile to hide the pain.

Afterwards I asked them to share out their thoughts about the story in the song. Then the questions began. This is how I tested their comprehension. I had 10-15 questions about the meaning of the song that they had to answer. This was their test.

They loved these things, but alas, after awhile, the school demanded that I use only school approved materials to teach. We had to go back to bored, disinterested readers who only pretended to read and couldn't comprehend.

Part of the reason I decided to retire early.

Gary

Seems like the school systems are prioritizing the all wrong stuff...my high school was never any good at sports, which was fine, until one year we had a good football team, and when the star players got into grade trouble, the administration started pressuring the teachers to take it easy on the students' grades who were playing football. One teacher absolutely refused to budge even a bit, and so a reason was manufactured to get rid of him.

Shame too, because holding us athletes accountable for making the grades AND playing sports seemed to be a much better lesson than in life than allowing us to slide just because we happen to be winning some games, but what did I know, I was just some dumb kid with a rebuilt Camaro and a mullet.
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