Oh, No, Late for School!

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As today is the last day of my winter break, I can only imagine what it would be like if I overslept tomorrow or totally forgot until the last minute that I was to return. Steve Martin (yes, THAT Steve Martin) has an adorable book called “Late for School”, about a student who sees the clock and realizes that the clock says he’s late. His adventures, in stanza form, allows for hilarity AND for some great common core connections for third grade. I selected this book because I’m developing a program called “School Daze”, mostly Orff-based. This book, something I had purchased about a year ago, is just the ticket to use for my kids to come in on, rather frantically! So, the next few posts I make is going to cover my development of the book for program use, and its connections to common core.

In the common core third grade standards, the following is found: Reading Standards-Key Ideas: ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text;  determine main idea of a text; describe characters in a text…..Integration: use information gained from illustrations and words to demonstrate understanding, compare and contrast points and key details…..Reading Standards in Phonics: grade level ponics….Writing-any of the writing standards of opinion pieces, informative text, and narratives could apply…..Speaking and Listening: Discussions, including collaborative, asking and answering questions, and determining main ideas.

On Day One of the lesson, open up the topic of being late for an event and allow for discussion. What happens if you are late for school? What are the consequences? What if you’re late for soccer (football, baseball, dance, etc.)? After a set time for discussion, read Late for School (but in a monotone). Ask the students to reflect on the reading voice used and whether it fits the mood of the student in the story. (The child is obviously in a panic in the story, so, no! A monotone won’t work). Play the accompanying CD of Steve Martin singing the story and ask students to compare and contrast. (This could also be a writing assignment if time permits).

In subsequent lessons, students will learn the words of the song and develop choreography to fit the mood. I will keep you posted on my students’ progress!

To order the book, Click here.

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I am an elementary music teacher and adjunct professor from Missouri and have completed my Ph.D. in music education through the University of Kansas.

I am an elementary music teacher and adjunct professor from Missouri and have just completed my Ph.D. in music education through the University of Kansas.

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