Thinking While You Read | Polly Wolly Prefix | The Writer's Song | Plural Y and F | Parts of Speech | Talk-Talk Song
4 Kinds of Sentences | Synonym Antonym Homonym Chant | Fiction Doodle Dandy | Angles Song | Parallel or Perpendicular
Triangle Bush | Quadrilateral | Perimeter Area Song | Measurement Song | Skip Counting Songs | ALL SONGS
Singin' the Standards Lesson Suggestions
Talk-Talk Song (Track 8)
This song is such titled because it reminds students how to correctly punctuate and capitalize sentences which contain talking. The reason for two talk words in the title is that it helps to remind students that quotation marks come in pairs.
The lyrics to this song can be quite intimidating at first. Let me reassure you that given a bit of practice students will master this song and never forget it. I know from experience. The intention of the lyrics can also be a little ambiguous, so I will explain them here.
When the talking, comes at the start...
This refers to sentences
where the direct quotation begins on the first word of the sentence. For
example, "My uncle has two eyes," commented the cyclops. 'My' is the first
word of the sentence and the speaking starts on that word. The first half of
this song helps kids what to do when the talking "comes at the start." The
second half of the song will deal with one other sentence structure for
...quote, capital, comma, then another quote.
This part of the song reminds
students all of the elements of punctuation and capitalization for the
talking sentences where the talking comes at the start. Note the following
sentence. "My uncle has two eyes," commented the Cyclops. The sentence
starts with a quote. Then the first word is capitalized. At the end of the
spoken part of the sentence, one places a comma and then another quote. The
end period is not a part of this song because it is assumed that students
who are attempting a concept as difficult as this have already mastered
ending punctuation on all sentences.
But in the middle...
This signals that the second
half of the song, and the second structure for a talking sentence, is about
to begin. This refers to talking sentences like the following. My uncle
whispered, "The train just ran over my foot." In this talking sentence, the
speaking part of the sentence starts in the middle of the sentence rather
than at the beginning. The rest of the song will remind students how to
capitalize and punctuate these types of sentences.
...comma quote and capital, finish it with a period and quote.
Again, like the explanation in the paragraph before the previous one, this part of the song reminds students of how to punctuate and capitalize this type of sentence. After the word whisper is a comma and then a quote. The first word after the quote is capitalized. The sentence ends with a period and quote.
I don't leave the instruction at this. I also explain that when we sing "period" in the second half of the song, it could be a question mark or an explanation mark. These two punctuation marks are perfectly acceptable as substitutes in the second half of the song. In the first half, the comma can be replaced by a question mark or explanation point. This gets very difficult for some students, but can be mastered with repeated exposures, and the use of this great mnemonic device, the Talk-Talk Song.