Over the River and Through the Woods on Throwback Thursday

Today’s Throwback Thursday was a duet of sorts, between members Alina Celeste and Gari Stein.

A poem by Lydia Maria Child, this classic Thanksgiving song was originally called “The New-England Boy’s Song about Thanksgiving Day” It appeared in her book, Flowers for Children, Volume 2, in 1844. It celebrates childhood memories of visiting her Grandfather’s House, which has a Wikipedia page all it’s own. Lydia Maria Child was a prolific artist who wrote novels as well as poems. She also worked as a journalist and teacher. She was a feminist, an abolitionist and an activist for the rights of Native Americans. Her journals, fiction and domestic manuals reached wide audiences from the 1820s through the 1850s. She is now most remembered for this lovely, nostalgic song, though the writer of the tune has now been lost to history.

There are so many versions of this song available, but I found this one on YouTube, and appreciated how the teacher so carefully put the song to a video to help the students learn!

I mentioned this classic song on the member list-serv, and member Gari Stein shared her technique:

I use a lovely book by Christopher Manson-Over the River and Through the Wood, with beautiful wood cut illustrations. I sing it slowly and I pause after  “over the river” and again at “through the woods” for children to do the motions. They make waves with their hands for over the river and look through their pretend binoculars for through the woods.