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Rainy Day Booklets
in our number game. One child sang “Wee Willie Winkie" and dry, so they dig down into the ground till they come for our clock maker.
to where it is cool and moist, and stay until the rain calls Thus we found that stories, poems and songs were valuable them out in such numbers that some people think they rain in number work. This particular number work game down from the sky. How the wise little robins know furnished a motive for research work. Readers, story this and hop around on the ground and make a tapping books, Mother Goose rhymes and song books were searched noise with their bills. When the earth-worms hear this in order to find materials for our game.
they think it is the tap-tap of the raindrops they love, and out they come only to be seized and carried off to the nest for the baby robins to eat. When I had finished
they reproduced orally what I had told them, and later Ella Stratton Colbo
wrote it as a language exercise. This was corrected care
fully and saved to be copied on a page of our booklet on My pupils always enjoy making booklets of any sort, but the next rainy day. the Rainy Day booklets which we made last year, gave Several poems were learned, copied and illustrated, them more pleasure than any of the others.
and made truly beautiful pages. The one beginning: Before starting new work of this kind, I make a sample booklet myself. This enables me to know what diffi
It isn't raining rain to me, culties they will encounter and to give my directions
It's raining daffodils, accordingly. Careful directions and the use of good materials will result in booklets so attractive that it is was especially pretty. A written language esson on hard to choose the “best” for exhibit purposes. Im
“What I Like to Do Best on a Rainy Day," was carepressing the children with the importance of doing all fully copied in and illustrated. construction work with clean hands will make the spoiled Some of the pages of each booklet were entirely original. booklets few and far between.
These contained paper cuttings, drawings, appropriate One rainy day I interested them in the new idea by clippings and pictures from magazines, and one even giving them a glimpse of the pretty booklet which I had contained a little original poem. We spent an interestcompleted and saying that we would all make one, but ing half-hour one day looking at these pages in each other's that they were to be kept at my desk and only taken out booklets. There was simply no end to suitable material to work with on days when the raindrops chased each and their interest was held during the entire year. Towother down the window panes.
ard the end they were so anxious to get them completed The work was done during a language, drawing, or con
that the continued fair weather made them quite peevish, struction period. The covers were made of gray con- and many a sunny day was greeted dolefully with “It struction paper size 6 x 9. The inside pages were white doesn't look even the least little bit like rain.” paper of the same size. For cover decorations we used borders of umbrellas cut from black paper and pasted across the top.
A Letter to the Editor On the first page they drew pictures of a little lady strolling along in the rain, almost covered by a large black
EDITOR PRIMARY EDUCATION: umbrella. Underneath we copied this verse which we had learned and often recited on rainy days:
In the October number of PRIMARY EDUCATION I read
a suggestion under the head of “Try This," which moves "Taint no sort of use to grumble and complain,
me to write to you in protest. The scheme was for the Might just as well rejoice!
purpose of awakening two boys: a lazy one and a slow When God sorts out the weather and sends rain,
one. Reminders were pasted on the desk of the boy in Why, rain's my choice!”
large type or writing; the word move for the slow boy and
work for the lazy one. What could have been the immediate Next we illustrated a longer poem, "Who Likes the result of this? Rain?” with one verse and a picture on each page.
In the first place, anyone who knows children can
picture the ridicule poked at these boys when the teacher “I,” said the duck, “I call it fun,
is not looking. Most boys are very sensitive until they For I have my little red rubbers on.
become hardened by those who do not understand what They make a cunning three-toed track
their gruff exterior is meant to hide. In the second place, In the soft cool mud, quack! quack! quack!” the boy has always before him the negative suggestion,
"I am slow," or "I am lazy," and will be very apt to follow “I hope 'twill pour! I hope 'twill pour!”
out this suggestion, becoming more slow or more lazy. Croaked the little tree toad from his front door; Or he may improve through fear of the ridicule imposed “For with a toad-stool for a roof, I am perfectly water-proof!"
The final result (which is the only one the real teacher
will consider all-important) will be one of three developSang the brook, "I laugh at every drop,
ments in the character of the boy: a careless, “it's no use, And wish it would never need to stop,
anyway," attitude toward everything, a stubborn "I Until a broad river I'd grow to be,
don't care” manner seen among some so-called “bad” And could find my way out to the sea.”
boys in the upper grades, or a sneaking tendency to act
for the sake of policy. Which of these does the teacher “I,” cried the dandelion, “I,”
desire to happen as the result of this punishment? “My roots are thirsty, my buds are dry.”
Laziness and slowness are the outward manifestations And she lifted a tousled yellow head
of some cause, known or hidden. Out of her green and grassy bed.
1 The child may have some physical obstacle such as As we were working one day a pupil said, "Sometimes poor eyes, bad teeth, adenoids, undernourishment, etc. when it rains at night it rains angle-worms." So I promptly 2 There may be disturbing home influences; poor told them all I could about earth-worms -- how ages ventilation at night, late hours, mistaken methods of and ages ago their great-great-great-grandfathers were training. The parent should be consulted concerning the water animals, and now they cannot stand it to be hot child's condition.
3 Then, Teacher, what of the interest you are creating our schoolrooms? Is it not too negative in effect for in the school work? A child does not learn quickly to modern pedagogy which knows that only positive suggesfeign interest in an unattractive study or presentation. tions for causes defined can effect permanent cures? Is Neither are all children interested in the same things. it not harmful to the other pupils and apt to develop in
4 The pupil may have been forced to his bad habit them a habit of cruelty to be given an invitation to ridicule by a former mistaken acher or parent or by circumstances. an unfortunate failing in a comrade? Which of these four causes will be removed by the method
MRS. C. O. VAN DYKE advocated? Is it not too cruel and harmful to be used in 521 South Georgia Street, Pittsburg, Kansas
He came to my desk with a quivering lip
The lesson was done “Dear teacher, I want a new leal,” he said,
“I have spoiled this one." In lace of the leaf so stained and blotted, I gave him a new one all unspotted, And into his sad eyes smiled “Do better now, my child.” I went to the Throne with a quivering sou. —
The old year was done -
I have spoiled this one."
our care in the formation of habits that shall make for their best all-round development.
After a talk about the New Year, varied, of course, according to the ages of the children, allow them to dramatize the departing year and the appearing New Year. This may be done without costumes.
One child chosen to represent the Old Year goes out sadly while the children ring imaginary bells, and all sing:
A bright, happy New Year is before us all, teachers and children alike.
As we look back over the old year, and then ahead over the coming days of opportunity, let us take courage, and not only begin again, but continue to build as wisely as possible our own characters and to help the children in
Ding dong! ding dong!
The old year will soon be gone,
For a new year's coming on;
Ring the New Year bells.
Tell us, year, before you go,
Why at last you hurry so?
Ring the New Year bells. The Old Year may tell that his work is done, the older children helping him by giving brief reviews, and that he must make way for the New Year.
The children then sing:
Dingi dong: ding! dong!
Why can't years come back again? Ding! dong! ding! dong!
Just the same as they have been? Ding! dong! ding! dong!
Ring the New Year bells.
Ding: dong! ding! dong!
Big folks say 'twould never do,
But I'd like it, wouldn't you?
Ring the New Year bells. All the children repeat the first stanza as the Old Year goes out, and the New Year child runs gaily into the room amid the ringing of bells, either real or imaginary.
As the New Year dances in and passes the Old Year the children all sing:
The north winds blow o'er drifts of snow;
Out in the cold who goes from here?
“Gocd-bye!” returns the brave Old Year.
Friday-"I sweep and scrub the floor"
The Old Year sings "Good-bye!" and the last line of the stanza.
Then the children continue as a knock is heard at the door:
A knock! a knock! 'tis twelve o'clock!
This time of night, pray, who comes here?
All people know the glad New Year.
Just now the door is opened, and the New Year flies in while all the children repeat amid the clappirg of hands:
Let us then the portals fling,
Heaping high the liberal cheer,
Welcome, welcome, glad New Year!
The little New Year sirgs the last line as he enters.
Or the older children repeat the following as a child chosen for the New Year lrocks at the door:
Little children, don't you hear
Some one knocking at the door? Don't you know the glad New Year
Comes to you and me once more?
Thoughts of helpfulness to others naturally follow, and whom should the children help but the dear Mother in the hone, then the teacher and playmates in the school.
A ring game illustrating the daily work of the Mother uses the music of “The Mulberry Bush.” The children may dance around in a circle as they sing:
We all go round the mulberry bush,
So early in the morning. They then stop and imitate the action required for each day, sir ging as follows:
(Cuiltinued on page 16)
Saturday — "Mix and bake more and more'
Sunday—"To church I go this day to worship God, you know
The Fairy Cakes
(4 Little Play of Early England and the Puritans)
Alice E. Allen This little Play is intended for children to give in celebration of places, five at each end of table, across which are the cake-tins. the
Tercentenary of the Landing of the Pilgrims. It may be pre First group, one after another, recite, placing gifts in tins as sented more or less elaborately, as a public entertainment. Or it may be simply played in the school-room (entire or in part) in any
they do so.) way that suggests itself.
First It is arranged in two parts — Part I - Making the Cake; (Part II –
I give a sword, Choosing the Cake.
Second I give a shield, The time is Long Long Ago; the place Merrie England.
Third I, a helmet, The Characters are Twelve Fairies; six little boys for King of
Fourth I, a steed, the Feast and his Knights; six little girls for Queen of the Feast and her Ladies-in-Waiting; ten little Puritans (Eve boys and five
And I, spurs, girls). These numbers may be changed to suit number of children All
For valiant knights in armor bold; taking part, in which case number of gifts, as well as dialogue, may First I give a fan, also be changed as necessary.
Second I give a plume, The Costumes, if any are used:
Third FAIRIES Usual Fairy Costumes in soft colors. Fairies carry long
I, a necklace, handled spoons instead of wands.
Fourth I, a ring, KNIGHTS AND LADIES blaze with bright colors. Knights may Fifth And I, slippers (a tiny pair on long cord) wear full knightly costumes, or just a touch, as a cape, a plumed All
For ladies fair with hearts of gold. hat, or a sword. Ladies, full court costumes, or just a ruff, jewel, or head-dress. (These should be five rocking-horses for
Two of the group (excitedly, holding up two little tins) But the Knights to use in game, “Here Come Three Dukes." Or what of these? We have no gift for these! small broomsticks will answer for steeds.)
Others Hush — do not touch those tins! The moon, PIRITANS should be sober in grays, browns and dark blues. Boys herself, has placed gifts in those cakes. Whoso gets them may be made into small Oliver Cromwells, if desired.
will be King and Queen of the Feast. Other noted characters of English history may be suggested by
Sixth Fairy (from other group) But there are now, in costumes.
Merrie England, little folks - strange, quiet little boys and ARRANGEMENTS In center of stage there should be a table of just girls called Puritans — who may not sing and dance as
the right height for the cake-making and cake-choosing.
others do. sugar cakes would be pretty) are arranged across either end Seventh Fairy I often see them as I go about. They of the table. There should be one for each child taking part are good children and love the Fairies. in Part II. Into these tins, the Fairies slip their gifts. If tiny toys cannot be found, use cut-out pictures of objects wanted.
Eighth Fairy What gifts shall we hide in their little In Part II, the cake-tins should be heaped on a platter or
cakes to show them the Fairies love them too? tray in the center of the table. It would be a pleasing touch Ninth Fairy To show them the wonderful things the if each cake-tin now held a real little cake. Ift can be arranged, future holds for them? the cake must have been taken from its tin, and the “gift” slipped underneath.
Second Group (recite, as did the First Group, one after Each child must, of course, know which cake is his, in order to
another, placing gifts in tins.) find the "fairy-gift” intended for him. Back of the table on a platform stand two little chairs, side
Sixth I give a Boat. For in years to come, a frail little by side, draped with color to represent a throne.
boat shall carry many of them far across the stormy seas As many extra games, songs, and dances may be added as desired.
to a new strange country.
Seventh I give an Axe. For in that new strange land, Part I - Making the Cake
they must cut down the great trees to build their homes (Fairies flit airily to stage, or space reserved for play, and places of worship. reciting or singing first stanza of William Allingham's "The Eighth I give an Eagle Feather. For in that new Fairies.")
strange land lives a new strange race of people. They Up the airy mountain,
wear blankets, beads, paint and feathers. They are called Down the rushy glen,
Ninth I give a Sword, strong and sure and steady.
The Puritans will need just such a sword to protect them Wee folk, good folk,
from dangers of many kinds. Trooping all together,
Tenth I give a Book — the Book they love best of all.
It will help them as much as the sword.
All These for the little Puritan Boys. Now, what for
the little Puritan Girls? (Introduce here, if desired, a drill and dance, using spoons
Sixth A spinning-wheel, for they must spin. as wands. Use any Fairy Song that the children have learned.)
Seventh A cap and kerchief, for these shall they wear. First Fairy (at close of drill) Enough to-night we must Eighth A tiny cradle-bed for the new little children make cakes for the children's Twelfth Night Feast. They who shall come. will come soon and they must find them all ready.
Ninth A bright-faced little flower that shall whisper Second Fairy And each cake must hold its gift. 'Courage” to them from the snow of a long bleak winter.
Third Fairy A Fairy Gift that will show the child who Tenth A torch - for these brave people shall become gets it what the future holds for him.
a light to all the world! Fourth Fairy There is so much to do — even for Fairies. All Now our work is over. It is time for the Children's Fifth Fairy Yes, to-night we must work and not sing. Feast. Let us away! Away! Away! First Fairy But why can't we work and sing, too? All (gaily) Oh yes, do let's work and sing, too!
(They flit backward, fingers on lips, and disappear.) (They sing with pretty motions of mixing, stirring, sprink
Part II — Choosing the Cake ling, testing cake, etc., “The Fairy Cake," on page 52.)
Knights and Ladies and little Puritans come to stage and Fairies (at close of song, separate into two groups and take take places. Knights, each beside his trusty “steed” (except