Old Dan Tucker - Teaching AB Form

Notice that the Old Dan Tucker audiation cards are two shapes, rectangle and oval. The rectangle shapes represent the "A" section. The oval shapes represent the "B" section. Introduce AB form to the children after they are able to use the cards to audiate Old Dan Tucker.

Hold up the first card of the song. Ask the children "What shape is this?" (It is likely that they will answer "square." You may or may not choose to "correct" them.)

Tell the children, "Let's sing only the cards that are a rectangle/square." Lay out the cards and sing the "A" section of Old Dan Tucker as a group.

Hold up the first oval card. Ask the children "What shape is this?" After they answer, ask, "Is it the same or different as these cards?" (Point to the rectangle cards.) Agree that the oval card is different. While all are agreeing, lay out the oval cards in the correct order.

Say, "Hmmmm . . . I wonder if the oval section is different from the rectangle section. Let's sing the oval section and see if it is the same or different." Sing the "B" section as a group. Allow the children to determine that the oval section was different.

Say, "I'm going to call the rectangle section the "A" section. What should we call the oval section." 99.9% of the time, the children will say, "The 'B' section." (If they don't, it is time to pull your best teaching skills out of a hat and lead them to it.)

Say, "Very cool. This first part of the song will be the 'A' section and this part of the song will be the "B" section."

Have the children practice singing the "A" section only and the "B" section only. Allow them to arrange their own sets of audiation cards by section. Give them the freedom to place and sing the "B" section first. They will do this! Some of them will use the card shapes to form patterns and will sing the song phrases out of order to match the pattern. This is a wonderful activity for them!! Enjoy!

If you would like an Old Dan Tucker Form Handout, click here.