Monday, February 21, 2011

President's Day Sing Along!

I am one of the lucky ones that gets to work on President's Day, boo! 
But, here is a funny story about one of my random facts:

(images from Google images)

My freshman year of college I was at Harding in Dr. Haney's History class.  It was a fairly easy class & I was taking it with a friend, Mandy.  We had another friend taking the same class in the afternoons.  Here's how Dr. Haney worked.  He would give a study guide and the test would be almost word for word off the study guide.  So, basically to study for a test, we would just quiz each other on the study guide.  Our friend in the afternoon class, Michelle, would fill in the study guide as Dr. Haney was lecturing...so when the 3 of us got together to study, Mandy and I basically had to do NOTHING to prepare. 
I dont really know how Michelle got the short end of that straw, but it worked at the time.  Mandy and I basically didnt have to do ANY work or even listen in class.  Well, falling asleep was NOT an option.  Dr Haney was known for picking up the podium and SLAMMING it down on the table to wake students up.  He did this for the poor fellow sitting next to us.  So, Mandy started bringing stationary and pretty paper for the 2 of us to write notes home or whatever.  The guy next to Mandy started asking for paper, so the 3 of us sat and had a great time writing to our loved ones.  (I recently found some of the notes that I wrote to Ben during this class!  They were, well, entertaining at least!)

Anyway, for Dr. Haney's final we had to memorize the appropriate study guide, be able to list the State Capitols, AND all the Presidents!  I had a pretty good grasp on the capitols b/c I had had to do that in High School so that was just a review.  Studying the study guide was also a breeze.  But those presidents...

In preparation I hung a list of the Presidents above my bed (before Thanksgiving) with the intent of learning a new one or two each day.  Well, the night before my final, I knew a whopping 5. 

FIVE.

(Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe)

And me knowing 5 was better than most of my study friends.  We were in trouble.  And it's not like early night...we were JUST STARTING the study process after 10PM.  We were smart and well prepared like that!! 

WHAT WERE WE GOING TO DO? 
We were screwed.

UNTIL, that is, that we realized that we could make up a song...but which one?!?  Well, we started singing them to the tune of the Books of the Old Testament song and it worked!  So, we get going.  We start with the first 4 and sing it OVER and OVER until we get it.  Then we add the next 4 and sing all 8 OVER and OVER and continue on like that for a LONG.TIME. 

There were maybe 5 or 6 in our little circle (at the top of the stairs on the Sears dorm 3rd floor) and by the end of the night we prob had about 15 girls all there singing the Old Testament Books The Presidents.  Being the considerate person that I was, I kept calling my mom as we would learn new segments and say "listen now!"  This was into the 1AM hours!  I was excited, what can I say?  Sorry! 

So, around 2 or 3 that morning, we had it down.  We went into the final and when it got to the part of listing the Presidents, you could just see the heads bobbing of those that learned it with us!  I aced the final and that might be the highest grade I have ever made in a History class.  It's just not my thing.

Now, I dont even have to sing...I can just recite it.  And I have spread the knowledge to those around me:

The next semester, my roomie, Kelly, and suite mate, Rachel, were in the class...and sure enough late into the night before the final...you guessed it, we had another late night singing lesson!  And it continues to be passed on.  My suite mate and I used it in an elementary music class the next year about how music can create connections and help people learn.

When I was teaching, I would teach my students.  Both my first AND third grade students knew the Presidents song.  For my first graders, I would write down the first letter of the last name, but my third graders learned the song.  We even got to sing it one President's Day when the Superintendent came for a visit.  They got to show off their new skills! 

Here you go (the song doesnt teach about spelling, so sorry if I missed some!).  Sing it with me:

Washington
Adams
Jefferson
Madison

Monroe
Adams
Jackson
VanBuren

Harrison
Tyler
Polk (and)
Taylor

Fillmore
Pierce
Buchannon

Lincoln
Johnson
Grant
Hayes

Garfield
Arthur
Cleveland
Harrison

Cleveland
McKinley
Roosevelt
Taft

Wilson
Harding
Coolidge

Hoover
Roosevelt
Truman
Eisenhower

Kennedy
Johnson
Nixon
Ford

Carter
Regan
Bush (and)
Clinton (that's where it ended for us with "Now we know our Presidents")

Bush
Obama
??

Go forth and teach the President's song!!

3 comments:

Britney K said...

I totally sang the entire time I read that list. HA! SO FUN!
P.S. Brad and I deleted our FB accounts. I'll email ya!

Britney K said...

I totally sang the entire time I read that list. HA! SO FUN!
P.S. Brad and I deleted our FB accounts. I'll email ya!

Donna said...

Greatness! I'll teach it to my boys. ; )

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