Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Singing Fifth Graders

Last week, we had the honor of being entertained by our town's entire fifth grade class.  It was The Spring Sing Fling.  And sing they did.

I tried to get a picture of the fifth graders from all five local elementary schools standing on stage together, but instead I got a photo of the above woman's head. 

The performance started out with the entire fifth grade singing a song with the High School A Capella Group.  It sounded surprisingly good.

After that first song, the schools divided up and each sang three songs by themselves.  Our school sang "Turkey in the Straw," (a song I will forever associate with learning to play the violin) "Rainbow Connection," (which very few children knew was from the Muppet Movie) and "Take the 'A' Train."  (which I have really nothing to say about.  Just for the sake of saying something, I will say it was catchy.)

We have a good music teacher at our new school.  She does a good job of mixing classic, kid songs with interesting, more unusual ditties.  This is a change from the music teacher who taught at our old school.  She  favored songs about death and people suffering terrible, disfiguring fates.  Concerts at our old school were always very disconcerting.  It is hard to watch your precious kindergartener sing a funeral dirge. 

The only thing worse than this music teacher's song choices was her almost militaristic insistence on having the children taking her classes learn dances.  I know my mother loved watching the music teacher play her accordion while the children danced last year, but certainly none of the kids enjoyed it.  I've yet to meet the fourth grader who thinks it's cool to do a "hanky dance" in front of the rest of the student body.

Surprisingly, it wasn't our old school's teacher who gave the parents a taste of embarrassment this year at the Spring Sing Fling.  That honor went to another elementary school's music teacher who insisted on the Dreaded Audience Participation - which took the form of various clapping, foot stomping and arm movements.  I tried to play along to look like a good sport in front of my children, but I probably shouldn't have bothered.  The second the house lights went up and the words "audience participation" left the music teacher's mouth, Georgia leapt under her chair and covered her face with her arms.  She watched that Hanky Dance last year and she's no dummy.

Overall, the performance was very good and it was interesting to see Henry's graduating class altogether for the first time. 

And I enjoyed seeing that my sister, Elizabeth, had time-travelled back to her fifth-grade-self to join her nephew Henry in a rousing version of "Turkey in the Straw."  (The resemblance in this photo is really uncanny).


Elizabeth said...

OMG! What am I doing there? Clearly saving the world with a sardonic glance. That is really creepy.

Martha said...

I know! Creepy to the max. Did you have any hour-long periods last week that you couldn't remember?

Elizabeth said...

And look at the first two pictures of me there, too! First I'm covering my face with my hair, and then I'm doing a face-palm in utter embarassment at having to do a hanky dance. That is just so me.

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