Close Reading Strategy S.O.A.P.S. (Railroad Work Songs)

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Close Reading Strategy: S.O.A.P.S.:

Close Reading Strategy: S.O.A.P.S. Applied to Railroad Work Songs Christy Prendergast April 13, 2015

Objective::

Objective: Students will be able to identify the subject, occasion, audience, purpose and speaker of the railroad work song “The Ballad of John Henry,” using the S.O.A.P.S. Close Reading Strategy. Important Note: Introductory lessons regarding slavery, Jim Crow laws, Gandy Dancers, spirituals, and railroad work songs were taught prior to this lesson.

Introduce the Strategy::

Introduce the Strategy : What does S.O.A.P.S. stand for? What is the subject? What is it about? S UBJECT O CCASION What is the occasion? What is the setting (time and place) of the selection ? Is there historical importance? A UDIENCE Who is the audience? Who was this piece written for? Was is written for one person or many people?

Introduce the Strategy::

Introduce the Strategy : What does S.O.A.P.S. stand for? What is the purpose behind this piece? Why was it written? P URPOSE S PEAKER Who was the speaker? What do you know about the speaker based on this selection?

Guided Practice: (Teacher Instructions):

Guided Practice: (Teacher Instructions) Go to the website: http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/10/gandy-dancers-linin-track-sound-files.html Scroll down to Example #4: “Linin ' Track” – performed by The Johnny Possum Band. Play the song selection as the students view the transcript of the song. Provide a written or digital transcript for students to make notes.

Lyrics to “Linin’ Track” :

Lyrics to “Linin’ Track” Ho , boys, is you right? [We right] I done got right All I hate about linin' track These ol ' bars 'bout to bust my back Chorus: Ho, boys, can’t you line ' em – trackalack Ho, boys, can’t you line ' em - trackalack Ho, boys, can’t you line ' em - trackalack Let's see how wese gonna linin' track Mary and the baby were settin ' in the shade Thinkin ' of the money that I ain't made Mary, Marthy , Luke and John Well all them ' ciples now they're dead and gone Chorus Moses stood on the Red Sea shore Battin ' at the waves with a two-by-four [Hey, boy] Well if I could I surely would Stand on the rock where Moses stood Chorus Down in the holler below the field Angels are workin ' on my chariot wheel I told my Lord I was ready to go He sent me down way below. Chorus Ho, boys, is you right? [We right] I done got right All I hate about linin' track These ol ' bars 'bout to bust my back Explanations for selected words ' ciples = disciples battin = hitting Down in the holler ( hollar )= a geographic formation similar to a valley, or a ravine

Guided Practice::

Guided Practice: Subject Working on lining up railroad tracks References or allusions to people and places in the Bible : Mary, Moses, ‘ ciples (disciples), Red Sea shore OCCASION Setting/Place: Singing about laying railroad tracks in a rural area “down in the holler below the field” Setting/Historical Time : Ballads sung by slaves and immigrants working on the railroad during the 1830’s to the early 1900’s

Guided Practice::

Guided Practice: AUDIENCE The CALLER sung the verse and the work crew RESPONDED with the chorus. The CALLER’s job was to motivate, entertain, and set the rhythm for the work crew. purpose Railroad work songs were sung to … H elp the workers pass the time Take their minds off of the hard labor Keep time (keep a rhythm) with the other hammer drivers

Guided Practice::

Guided Practice: speaker African-American slaves, Gandy Dancers or workers working on the railroad tracks. Based on spirituals – references to people and places in the Bible . He doesn’t like his job “These ol ' bars 'bout to bust my back” Gandy dancers http://www.encyclopediaofalabama.org/images/m-3011.jpg

Apply the Strategy::

Apply the Strategy: Using “The Ballad of John Henry” located on pages 405-408 in your r eading anthology, you and a partner will identify the: Subject Occasion Audience Purpose Speaker

Assessment::

Assessment: Go to Haiku Click on the “Reading” Page Click on the “John Henry” Page Click on “Discussion: S.O.A.P.S.” to submit your responses. Remember to write your responses in complete sentences with proper capitalization, punctuation, and grammar.

Reflection::

Reflection: Read and respond to two other students’ submissions on the “Discussion Board” on Haiku. Remember to use your scholarly voice when you respond. Your writing should be formal, no “text speak/writing .” Sample Sentence Frames: I agree with you because… I disagree with you because… So what you are saying is… Can you explain what you meant about…?

Additional Discussion Topics::

Additional Discussion Topics: Metaphors/Similes Hyperbole Personification Dialect American Folktales American Tall Tales

On-line Resources::

On-line Resources: Brown, Jim. “Gandy Dancer Work Song Tradition.” Encyclopedia of Alabama . Alabama Humanities Foundation, 17 October 2012. Web.13 April 2015. http :// www.encyclopediaofalabama.org/article/h-1220 Powell, Azizi . “Gandy Dancers & Linin’ Track Sound Files & Videos.” Pancocojams . 23 October 2012. Web. 13 April 2015. http :// pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/10/gandy-dancers-linin-track-sound-files.html

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