Talk Like A Pirate Day

by Anne & David Ellsworth

This song concept came from Anne and David's then first grade daughter's "Pirate Day" afternoon at her elementary school. All children dressing and acting the part of high seas treasure seekers, this fun-filled classroom activity was a cleverly disguised venture into learning.

The first grade teacher (the biggest, loudest, and most convincing of them all) led her young shipmates through an afternoon of raucous games, swashbuckling puzzles, and a few rollicking sea shanties. The children were divided into "crews," complete with a captain, first mate, navigator, and various and sundry crew members going on a real, honest-to-goodness treasure hunt through the school - adult chaperoned, of course. So clever and fun! Everyone was learning with not a hint of boredom in sight!

So here is our contribution to all the future Pirate Days yet to be at your school! (With an emphasis on the more benign features of those infamous scallywags: their speak and swagger.) Costumes are most important for the event, though we would like to discourage any "weaponry" (as if your school hasn't already done so).

This tune is sure to get everyone in the frame of mind for some proper pirate acting, complete with parrot. With the piccolo hinting at a familiar sea shanty, the children sing an invitation for all to "talk like a pirate now! Arrrrrr!" Which is, of course, how all self-respecting pirates speak. Invite your kids to sway and bob to the bass rhythm by your own example. Do it with your peg leg and they will follow! Take note, Cap'n. Extra shares of treasure to the best renditions could be awarded.

The chorus is the really fun part, we think. You may choose to follow our version, or you could go a wee bit wild with it. For example, lead your classroom crew to recite the phrases all together. Or let them come up with their own. Above all, enjoy yerself, mateys! 'R we'll be comin' to 'scort ye to the plank! Arrrrrr!

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.