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Ourchestra

By Shel Silverstein
Taken from “Where the Sidewalk Ends”
So you haven’t got a drum, just beat your belly
So you haven’t got a horn, I’ll play my nose
So I haven’t any cymbals, we’ll just clap our hands together
And though there may be orchestras
T hat sound a little better
With fancy instruments
That cost an awful lot
We’re making music twice as good
By playing what we got



Teaching Process:
· Read the poem to the children in its entirety, chanting the words while the children keep a steady beat.
· Read the poem again, stopping after each line for exploration of the specified “body sound”. Make a list of all the things that each body sound could do (i.e. belly – gurgle, growl, etc)
· Divide the class into three groups – have them make a list of the sounds their body part can make. Record these on chart paper.
· Each group will select four sounds and clap them to create a rhythmic ostinato. Invite each group to add body percussion sounds to the ostinato.
· Share these with each other. Transfer the ostinati to non-pitched percussion or found sounds.
· Repeat the poem, adding the rhythm pattern after each line
· Use the rhythm patterns that you have created as the as the foundation for a “Rhythmic Stomp” that can be created collaboratively
· Read the poem, again, using the body percussion after each line, add the B section with a “stomp” which makes use of found sounds for “percussion”, and finish with a CODA (the last six lines of the poem ending with a loud accent from all the “found sounds)
· Extension: Have students who are going to read add dynamics to each line.