Submitted by Theresa, Wisconsin
Idea posted May 11, 2004
The game is so easy. Use whatever version of the song "Engine Engine #9" you like. Since it is really a chant, you can use whatever pitches you like as well. (I use "So" and "Mi.") Have the kids sit in a circle. First, practice patting the beat while singing. Then, demonstrate what it will look like when the object goes around the circle to the beat. (I use a little beanie stuffed Dalmatian. It's easy for them to pass and doesn't roll around.) Next, practice passing the animal on the floor around the circle without the song. After the kids have gotten that down, add the song with the passing. After the line "Do you want your money back?," the person who has the animal answers the question with "Yes," "No," or "Maybe." Then, you spell their answer by passing the animal around the circle to the next person for each letter of the answer being spelled (i.e., yes = three passes, no = two passes, and maybe = five passes). Whomever the animal lands on, that student is "out" and gets to pick another student from the circle to take out of the circle with them. (The two kids then pick a rhythm instrument and play the beat while the game goes on.) You can substitute a xylophone for the rhythm instruments or change the beat pattern to a rhythmic ostinato to practice any rhythms the kids need work on. My first graders love this game.