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Suggested Activities & Lesson Topics


The suggestions following the potential outcomes consist of pre-event activities, day of event activities, the event, and post-event activities. A key component is youngsters recruiting family, friends, neighbors and community leaders to participate in The Great NYC Sing.


Potential Outcomes of Suggested Activities & Lesson Topics  o

General Outcomes

  Direct results from singing in event:

     1. Fosters potential increase in expectation for student involvement in music.
Fosters positive relationships with adults, peers and a sense of community.

  Results from pre-event and post-event activities

     3. Promotes community engagement and involvement.
Supports youth leadership development.
Strengthens youngsters’ academic, artistic and musical skills.

Specific Outcomes

  Direct results from singing in the event:

     1. Children experience joy of music shoulder to shoulder across age groups, family and group constellations.
Encourages family fun and togetherness.Increases youngsters’ sense of being part of the neighborhood
        and community.
Students experience being  part of an event that is a piece of a much larger city-wide event.

  Results from pre-event and post-event activities

  1. Students develop organizational and community building skills.
  2. Students develop skills related to selected pre and post event activities
    1. Visual arts
    2. Music
    3. Academics (see below)
    4. Etc.

Suggested Activities &  Lesson Topics By Category


1. Recruiting Participants (Project Planning & Implementation)

  1. Outline different recruiting methods (Person to person, phone, email, posters, flyers, local newspaper announcements)
  2. List potential target recruits (family, friends, friends of friends, neighbors, community stores, & offices, places of worship, community leaders & dignitaries, other)
  3. Decide what to say and/or write in different combinations of #1 & #2 above.
  4. Construct and maintain lists of successful new recruits.
  5. Record new recruits who actually come to event.

2. Arts

  1. Paint, draw or computer generate:
    1. Pictures corresponding to song images
    2. Flyers, posters, signs for event
    3. Class/school murals
  2. Create photographs, videos of rehearsals, discussions, event, etc.
  3. Design t-shirts.

 3. Music

  1. The obvious – students sing “This Land”.
  2. Youngsters can play instruments to accompany song. (key of D)
  3. Translate chorus of “This Land” into language of ethnic background and sing.

 4. History/Social Movements/Politics

  1. Research and/or learn about Woody Guthrie, who wrote  “This Land I Your Land” in 1940
    1. Who was Woody Guthrie?
    2. Why did Woody write the song?
    3. What were the conditions of U.S. in 1940 when Woody wrote “This Land”?
  2. Research geographic locations referred to in “This Land” – Redwood Forest, Gulf Stream Waters, wheat fields, dust clouds, etc.
  3. Compare New York City to other regions of country geographically, socially, ethnically.

 5. Literacy

  1. Develop vocabulary words
  2. Explore the use of imagery and metaphors in “This Land”.
    1. “ribbon of highway”, “dust clouds rolling”, “diamond deserts”, “freedom highway”
  3. Explore the use of inference and symbolism in “This Land”.:
    1. What did Guthrie mean by :

                                                               i.      “And all around me a voice was sounding.”

                                                             ii.      “Was a great high wall there that tried to stop me.”

                                                            iii.      “Nobody living can ever stop me as I go walking that freedom highway.”

  1. Write essays or poems about the song and/or the event.
  2. Write new verses to “This Land”. 

6. Mathematics

Skills: Counting, arithmetic, ratios, averages, median, percents, etc.


The Recruiting Project

When recruiting people to attend the Sing, construct & maintain lists and categories such as:


1.       What were the # people contacted, # who said ‘yes’, # who said ‘no’, # who said ‘maybe’

2.       Of these categories, how many were friends, family, neighbors, total strangers? What was the method of contact –phone, email, person to person?

3.       Compare the numbers in the categories above – Which category had highest total? How much more was the highest compared to the next highest? To the least?

Post Event

1.       What was the total # people who sang? how many were new (never contacted)?

2.       Of pre-event #yes, how many came?  Maybe’s?

3.       Etc.


Using above lists, compute and answer the following:

  1. # total people contacted vs. # yes 
  2. Which method of contact (email, personal, phone) yielded best results? How is this determined?
  3. Which category (friends, family, etc) yielded best results? How is this determined?
  4. What do you think are the reasons for the results? 

7. Event (Project) Planning & Implementation

Create the Plan

  1. Outline steps needed to accomplish task locally (entrepreneur skill building)
  2. Create task-based committees to address specific steps.
  3. Assign tasks to specific youngsters or teams from committees.

Suggested Project Steps
Recruiting New Participant
(see first Suggested Activity above)

Learning the Song

    1.   Getting/ distributing songsheets before and at event
Process of learning melody & words
Selecting a song leader (the person who listens to the radio and signals when to start singing.)
Day of Event Logistics
Getting radios
Extra song sheets
Preparing sings
Checking attendance lists
Taking photos, filming
Deciding when and where to meet.
    8.   Create pre and post interview questions.
Assign roles to students (photographer, interviewer, sketch the scene)
Post Event Activities
To be decided

8. Other OST Categories Impacted By Event


Peer Mentorship with College Tutors                                                                            

    1.   Small group discussions on topics related to the preparation of and participation in the event.
Discuss other community events.
Share similar experiences with regard to #1 and/or #2 above.
(Note: Discussion leads up to relationship building)


Community Building

Partner/ recruit other CBO’s, schools, and business establishments to join the event, promote awareness in community, promotes relationship building with community partners.  


Visits to Program by Community Leaders

Invite local council member, superintendent, local newspaper, media coverage to event.


Community Service Projects

Develops leadership skills, communication skills, entrepreneur skills, organization skills (recruit & organize this event for particular group or program)


Parent and caregiver involvement activities

Quick and easy parent involvement, non-intimidating, promotes volunteerism and collaboration among parents: All parents, care givers, and siblings can join event.