For about a week, I have been offering a special sticker to a student who can find a word that rhymes with “eleven.” The Owls, Zebras, Giraffes, and Bears have been stumped finding a rhyme. On Tuesday, D. Alligators said, “heaven” rhymes with “eleven.” Perfect! He earned a “Brilliant!” sticker that he wore proudly on his shirt. On Thursday, C. Agents said, “Eleven and seven rhyme.” Wow! Next he shared that “twelve rhymes with shelve.” Yes! He also earned a “Brilliant!” sticker.
For several weeks, the Bears class has wanted to extend the numbers and rhymes of “This Old Man.” So, we worked on the rhymes of eleven to fifteen. We love singing the “This Old Man” song, counting the numbers, and using rhyming words. Using a rhyming app (RhymeFree) on my iPhone, I gave student choices of different words that rhymed. We decided on the words and sang through from one to fifteen. After that, they wanted to figure out sixteen and seventeen!
“This Old Man” has been a jumping board for curiosity in rhyming words and working on counting numbers. With the repetitive lyrics and predictability in consecutive numbers, students feel comfortable to sing and to name the next number of the song. Playing the sticks while singing the song, we have different movements for the rhyming words (ex. using sticks to put sunscreen on body, “drinking” the sticks.) With the Bears, we may write more verses and maybe even an extended “This Old Man” book!