Submitted by Monica Autry, Ft. Bragg, North Carolina

Idea posted April 19, 2004

I thought I would share a game I've been playing with my first graders this week. Many of you may already know "Acka Backa."

Acka Backa soda cracker (ss ll ss mm)
Acka Backa boo! (ss ll s)
Acka Backa soda cracker (ss ll ss mm)
Out goes you! (s l s)

I used the game to assess singing pitches so, mi, and la. We played the traditional game where one person goes around the circle pointing at each person on the steady beat. While they point, they must sing. The student they are pointing to on the last word "you" becomes the new "it" to point and sing. Earlier in the week, I would let a child take a pair of sticks back to their seat when they got out. That became rather noisy and took away from the singing. Today, I gave each child a soda cracker (mentioned in the song) when they got out. They went back happily to their seats munching on a cracker. But they had to sing and point before they ate their cracker.

This song is perfect for Boomwhackers®! My first graders played the song from notation on their Boomwhackers®. We played fast, slow, medium, soft, and loud. They played, sang the words, and then said the pitch names.