by David & Anne Ellsworth
As they sometimes do, the Ellsworths have once again teamed up to bring a message of safety to our youngsters. This time the topic is walking on the street. If there is no sidewalk, what should you do? This song will help them learn and remember the answer: Walk on the left side of the street facing traffic. That way, you can see what's coming and if you need to move out of the way, you can do it.
Young children often have difficulty remembering which is their left side. This song will provide you the opportunity to go over that subject as well.
The song begins with the unison singing that sets the tone: Left side, yeah. The left side. The rhythm echoes the strings and should be quickly learned, especially if you use the recording as a teaching tool.
At measure 9 the first time, everyone rhythmically speaks the verse together. At 17, they sing together both times. At the repeat of 9, you can divide them into parts, if you wish. One part can speak while the other sings as they did at the beginning (measure 5). They sing this part again together at measure 25 and end with the strings.
If you don't want to divide them into parts at the repeat of 9, just have them do the rap. Or if you want to, but think your students are a little unsure, maybe you can have an unequal division. Most of them could rap, while a handful sing. Or maybe you're the singer. Or maybe another class can sing with them for security. Whatever works.
You will have a real treat in store with this recording. Our usual superb players got to show off a little with solo/soli performances. (We teased Anne and David that this one reminded us of a funky Beatles tune with those strings, especially the cello.) You can see who the players were in our masthead on the inside cover of this issue.
Be sure you bring this song across the curriculum at your school. No doubt the classroom teacher will appreciate the reinforcement of such an important issue. If your school has a safety focus, such as safety week or safety month, plan to use the song in conjunction with it.
Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.