Song Activity: By Judy Perez July 16, 2008 Grade Level: Kindergarten/First Subject Area

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Song Activity: By Judy Perez

July 16, 2008

Grade Level: Kindergarten/First

Subject Area: Language Arts/Social Studies Integration

Abiyoyo: Written by Pete Seeger

Illustrated: By Michael Hays

By Pete Seeger

This story is about a boy and his father who is a magician. The father played tricks on the people of this small African village. The towns people got tired of his tricks and asked the father and his son to leave and live outside of town. The village elders at night would tell stories (folktales) about a giant named ABIYOYO. They would say he was big as a house and would eat people up.

Listen to this folktale and sing the delightful song the children will enjoy and beg for you to read it over and over again.

Brief background about folktales

African folktales were told to children to teach them about life and growing up. Children in the village learned lessons from the folktales told to them.

American Folktales were passed down through the generations from one person to another by word of mouth. Stories grew each time they were told. Stories conveyed a conflict, problem or lesson that needed to be learned. Much like the parables Jesus used.


Day One

  1. Play or sing Abiyoyo

  2. Show the cover of the story Abiyoyo

Ask: What do you think this story was about?

Use: KWL Chart to record their answers

Ask: What do you know about the story? Mark the answers under the "K"

Ask: What do you want to know? Mark your answer under the "W"

Ask: What stands out or what did we learn about the story? Mark your answer

Under the "L"

Read the story to the students. Sing the song, invite the students to sing along.

Instruments: Discuss what a ukulele is.

Ask: Who, what, when, where, why, and how questions.

Vocabulary: Use the dry erase board and record words students do not know.

Where On the Map: Use the map to show the students where Africa is located.

Day Two

Compare Abiyoyo with the American folktale about Paul Bunyan

Paul Bunyan Songs: The Man In Plaid by Leo Kottke and The Ballad Of Paul Bunyan

Story of Paul Bunyan, American Folktale


Show the students the cover of the book, Read the story about Paul Bunyan.

Play the "Ballad of Paul Bunyan" by Leo Kottke

Discuss: Tall tales

Vocabulary: Woodcutters, Logging, lumberjacks

Day Three

Incorporate: Community helpers and other lumberjack songs

Play the song "The Man in Plaid" by Leo Kottke

Map Activity: Show on the map where Maine where Bunyan was born and Wisconsin where the folktale took place.

Writing Activity: Practice the letter Aa, Xx, letters that make up the word AX.

Color a picture of Paul Bunyan.

Performance Assessment for both Stories and Songs

  1. Create a tall tale today. Have the students draw pictures to go with the story.

  2. Create our own short song, like the one in Abiyoyo by Pete Seeger

Resources for Both Stories and Songs

YouTube: Type in Paul Bunyan and you will get (Mel O Toons) the animated story including lumberjack songs.

YouTube: Type in Abiyoyo and Pete Seeger, you will get Pete Seeger reading the story and singing the song Abiyoyo.

Copy of story/song/lyrics


Primary Sources

Story books/Picture of Ukulele

Songs on CD and on transparency

Additional Resources

Computer to show YouTube selections

Coloring Pages


KWL Chart


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