Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded/Chapter 4

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search


IV

MUSIC ACTIVITIES



Music and the Retarded

In the camping situation, music can be used as a group activity between other activities and at get-togethers for all the campers. Many of the more common camp songs tend to be wordy and must be simplified, slowed down, sung on a slightly lower pitch, and otherwise modified to suit the retarded campers. Few of the campers will learn all of the words to a song, but all campers should still try to perform the gestures to a song, even if they mumble through the words.

For younger groups, the songs should be kept in their simplest form by using only a chorus or possibly only one line of a song over and over. All retardates enjoy action songs and are great imitators of the song leaders. The success and popularity of a song will hinge on the song leader's enthusiasm. Remember that many retarded children find their only successes in music, and work it into the camping situation at every opportunity.

The songs that follow are listed as (1) action songs, (2) singing games, (3) mealtime songs, and (4) just songs. Those songs not footnoted are usually common melodies with words adapted to fit the camping situation. These are from the authors' experiences with day camps for retarded children.


Action Songs

"Patsy-Ore-Ore-Ay" -- to the tune of "Skip to My Lou" (older)[1]

The campers may be able to sing the chorus and do the actions to this song.

Chorus: Patsy-Ore-Ore-Ay
Chorus: Patsy-Ore-0re-Ay
Chorus: Patsy-Ore-Ore-Ay
Chorus: Workin' on the railroad.

(clap to rhythm, throw hands in the air on "Ay" or clap once on "Patsy", roll hands on "Ore-Ore" and throw hands in air on "Ay")

Eighteen-hundred-fifty-one
American railroad just begun
American railroad just begun
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1852
Lookin' around for something to do (hand shading eyes, 1look around)
Lookin' around for something to do
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1853
American railroad accepted me (point to self)
American railroad accepted me
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1854
Found my back was mighty sore (put hand on back and bend over)
Found my back was mighty sore
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1855
Found myself more dead than alive
Found myself more dead than alive
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1856
Stepped on a pile of dynamite sticks (stamp on ground)
Stepped on a pile of dynamite sticks
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1857
Found myself on the way to heaven (point up)
Found myself on the way to heaven
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1858
Pickin' the lock on the Pearly Gate (pantomime using a key)
Pickin' the lock on the Pearly Gate
Workin' on the railroad.

Chorus.

1859
Floating around on a cloud sublime (wave hands in front of you)
Floating around on a cloud sublime
Workin' on the railroad. (Chorus)

 

"Old Ma Leary" ("There'll Be a Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight") (middle)

One dark night, when we were all in bed
Old Ma Leary took the lantern to the shed
And when the cow kicked it over
She winked her eye and said (wink)
"There'l1 be a hot time in the old town tonight."
Fire! Fire! Fire! (throw hands in air)


"I Want to be Friendly" --to the tune of "Old Grey Mare" (all groups, slow)

I don't want to march in the infantry (stand up and march)
Ride in the cavalry (pretend to ride a horse)
Shoot the artillery (shoot with finger)
I don't want to fly over Germany (put arms out and fly)
I want to be friendly.

I want to be friendly (shake hands with those around you)
I want to be friendly

(Repeat first part of song)

(The children like this song for its simple actions. Many of them are able to sing the "I want to be friendly" chorus.)


"Gray Squirrel" (young)

Gray squirrel, gray squirrel, swish your bushy tail
Gray squirrel, gray squirrel, swish your bushy tail
Wrinkle up your tiny nose, put a nut between your toes
Gray squirrel, gray squirrel, swish your bushy tail.


"Baby Bumblebee" (young)

sung:said: Catch a baby bumblebee (pantomime)
sung: I'm taking home a baby bum-ble-bee
sung: Won't my mom-my be so proud of me
sung:I'm taking home a baby bum-ble-bee
sung:Buzz-y, buzz-y, buzz-y, oh! He stung me! (hold cupped hands to ears, then throw hands in air)

sung:said: Catch a baby hoppy toad.
sung: I'm taking home a baby hop-py toad
sung:Won't my mom-my throw him in the road?
sung:I'm taking home a baby hop-py toad
sung:Hop-py, hop-py, hop-py, oh! He got a-way!

sung:said: Catch a baby rattlesnake.
sung: I'm taking home a baby rattle-snake
sung: Won't my mom-my shiver and shake?
sung: I'm taking home a baby rattle-snake
sung: Rattle, rattle, rattle, oh! He bit me!

sung:said: Catch a baby dinosaur
sung: I'm taking home a baby dino-saur
sung: Won't my mom-my throw him out the door?
sung: I'm taking home a baby dino-saur
sung: Crunchy, crunchy, crunchy, oh! He ate me!

(make up other verses)

"We Are The Redmen" (older)

We are the redmen tall and quaint (arms folded across chest)
We are the redmen tall and quaintIn our feathers and warpaint (make feathers with fingers on top of head, touch face for warpaint)
We come home from fighting afar (shade eyes with hand)
Greeted by our long-nosed squaw (make motion of long, curving nose)

Chorus: Pow-wow, Pow-wow
Chorus: We're the men of the old dung cow
Chorus: For we are the redmen
Chorus: Feathers-in-our-head men
Chorus: Down among the dead men
Chorus: Ugh, pow-wow.

We can fight with sticks and stones (hit air with closed hands)
Bows and arrows (pantomime pulling back bow)
Bricks and bones (hit air with closed hands)

Chorus.

Actions for Chorus:

Line 1: Cross hands in front of chest on first "pow-wow", reverse them on the second "pow-wow".
Line 3: On "We", raise right arm up, keeping left hand on the right elbow.
Line 4: Make feathers with fingers on head.
Line 5: Make curving downward motion with both hands.
Line 6: Hit chest on "Ugh", fold arms across chest on "pow-wow".


"Indians are High-Minded" (middle, older) Good action song.

Indians are high-minded (put one hand on top of the other, raise one, lower one)
Bless my soul they're double-jointed (fold hands, touch elbows)
They climb trees and they don't mind it (shake head "no")
All day long. (Make circular motion with both hands)

 

"If You're Happy and You Know It" -- Good actions (all groups)[2]

If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. (clap, clap)
If you're happy and you know it then your life will surely show it
If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands. (clap, clap)

Verses:
2 - stomp your feet
3 - shout hurrah
4 - do all three


"Crocodile Song" (middle, older)[3]

Oh, she sailed away on a bright and sunny day (one hand on the other - up and down motion)
On the back of a croc-o-dile.
"You see," said she (point to eye), "he's as tame as he can be. ("pet" one hand with the other)
I'll ride him down the Nile." (up and down motion again)

The crock winked his eye (wink) as she waved them all good bye (wave)
Wearing a happy smile (point to mouth and smile)
At the end of the ride (sadly, using up and down motion again)
The lady was inside (open and close hands like a mouth)
And the smile was on the croc-o-dile. (quickly)


"In a Cabin In the Woods" -- rather lengthy, repetitious (older groups)[4]

In a cabin in the woods, a little man by the window stood.
(draw a square in the air; use fingers as glasses)
Saw a rabbit hopping by, knocking at my door.
(make ears of first two fingers; knock in the air)
"Help me! Help me! Help!" he cried, "or the hunter will shoot me dead."
(shout)(use index finger for gun)
"Little rabbit, come inside. Safely you'll abide."
(motion to come in; hold bunny in one arm and pet with other hand)

Sing again, this time leaving out the last verse and using only the actions. Each time, leave out an additional phrase.
 

"Do Your Ears Hang Low?" -- to the tune of "Turkey in the Straw" (Do this one slowly; good actions but words are difficult)

Do your ears hang low? (point to ears)
Do they wobble to and fro? (move hands back and forth)
Can you tie them in a knot? (tie an imaginary knot)
Can you tie them in a bow? (tie an imaginary bow)
Can you throw them over your shoulder (motion over shoulder)
like a Continental soldier? (salute)
Do your ears hang low? (point to ears and then to ground)


"Little Bunny Foo-Foo" -- simple actions; campers can learn chorus (all groups)

Little Bunny Foo-Foo hopping through the forest (two fingers, hopping motion)
Scooping up the field mice (scooping motion) and battin' them on the head (hit one fist with other hand).

said: Down came the good fairy (downward motion) and she said,

sung: "Little Bunny Foo-Foo, I don't want to see you (shake finger)
sung: Scooping up the field mice (scooping motion) and battin' them on the head (hit one fist with other hand).
sung: I'll give you (3, 2, or 1) more chance(s) (1st through 3rd verse)
sung: And then turn you into a goon.

(Repeat from beginning, reducing number of chances)

End: "I gave you three chances and now I'll turn you into a goon. Poof."

Moral: "Hare today and goon tomorrow."


"My Hat" -- simple (all groups)[5]

My hat it has three corners (point to head and make a hat)
Three corners has my hat (hold up three fingers, point to head)
And had it not three corners (shake head "no")
It would not be my hat (point to head).


"Six Little Ducks" -- good actions; do slowly (all groups)[6]

Six little ducks that I once knew (six fingers)
Fat ones, tall ones, skinny ones too. (pantomime)
Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/60 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/61 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/62 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/63 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/64 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/65 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/66 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/67 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/68 Page:Day Camping for the Trainable and Severely Mentally Retarded (1970).pdf/69



  1. From: Sing! American Camping Association, Cooperative Recreation Service, Inc., Delaware, Ohio, p. 18.
  2. Ginglend, David R. Music Activities for Retarded Children. Abingdon Press, New York, 1965, p. 62.
  3. American Camping Association, op. cit., p. 16.
  4. Ibid., p. 21.
  5. Ibid., p. 59.
  6. Ibid., p. 20.