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Fun English Practice 1: A Simple Christmas Call-And-Response Song

(STUDENTS: Remember to write new words in your vocabulary journal. Do not worry if you cannot find any. I said it is a simple song!)

INTRODUCTION
A CALL AND RESPONSE SONG is sung by two or more people. One SOLOIST sings the "call." It may be a question, but not always. Everyone else sings a "response" after the call. If the call is a question, the response will be the answer. In our Christmas song "Must Be Santa", singers sing only a few lines this way. ALL sing the other parts of the song. (For more fun, people can take turns being the SOLOIST!)

The YouTube MITCH MILLER video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42_vCV2_gf0 includes art that will help you understand some of these words. (You can sing along with it too!)

A list of hard words and holiday terms appears after the LYRICS to the song.

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MUST BE SANTA
(COMPOSERS: Hal Moore and Bill Hendricks)

CALL: Who's got a beard that's long and white?
RESPONSE: Santa's got a BEARD that's long and white.
CALL: Who comes around on a special night?
RESPONSE: Santa comes around on a special night.

ALL:

Special night, BEARD that's white,
Must be Santa must be Santa,
Must be Santa, Santa Claus.

CALL: Who wears boots and a suit of red?
RESPONSE: Santa wears boots and a suit of red.
CALL: Who wears a LONG CAP on his head?
RESPONSE: Santa wears a LONG CAP on his head.

ALL:

Cap on head, suit that's red,
Special night, BEARD that's white,
Must be Santa, must be Santa,
Must be Santa, Santa Claus.

CALL: Who's got a big red CHERRY nose
RESPONSE: Santa's got a big red CHERRY nose.

CALL: Who laughs this way: HO HO HO?
RESPONSE: Santa laughs this way: HO HO HO!

ALL:

Ho Ho Ho, CHERRY nose,
Cap on head, suit that's red,
Special night, BEARD that's white.
Must be Santa, must be Santa,
Must be Santa, Santa Claus.

CALL: Who very soon will come our way?
RESPONSE: Santa very soon will come our way.
CALL: Eight little REINDEER pull his SLEIGH,
RESPONSE: Santa's little REINDEER pull his sleigh.

ALL:

REINDEER SLEIGH come our way,
Ho Ho Ho, CHERRY nose,
Cap on head, suit that's red,
Special night, BEARD that's white,
Must be Santa, must be Santa,
Must be Santa, Santa Claus.

CALL: DASHER, DANCER, PRANCER, VIXEN
RESPONSE: COMET, CUPID, DONNER, AND BLITZEN

ALL:

REINDEER SLEIGH, come our way,
HO HO HO, CHERRY nose,
Cap on head, suit that's red,
Special night, BEARD that's white,
Must be Santa, must be Santa,
Must be Santa, Santa Claus!

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Can you see that list of hard words and holiday terms yet? It is not not far away now.

Do you or someone you know play the guitar? Links to the guitar chords for the MELODY and to the LYRICS for this song are available to view or print here:http://guitar.about.com/library/blsongs_mustbesanta.htm.

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HARD WORDS AND HOLIDAY TERMS

BEARD: (noun) hair on a man's chin

CALL AND RESPONSE SONG: (sung by two or more people. One SOLOIST sings the "call." It may be a question, but not always. Everyone else sings a "response" after the call. If the call is a question, the response will be the answer.) In world history, this way of singing was often used in African and African-American songs.

CHEERFUL: (adjective) giving people good feelings or happiness

CHERRY: (metaphor for a bright red color) a small, round, red (or black!) fruit

COMPOSERS: (plural noun) people who write songs and music

DASHER, DANCER, PRANCER, VIXEN, COMET, CUPID, DONNER, AND BLITZEN: (Proper nouns) the names of Santa’s eight (8) reindeer

LIKE CATTLE OR HORSES: This is a simile telling you to compare reindeer with cows (or reindeer with horses) in your mind.

LONG CAP: (adjective + noun, archaic or old English) a warm knitted cap that fits closely around the head but is loose on top. A TASSEL or POM-POM may be sewed to the center of the top.

LYRICS: (noun) words to a song

MELODY: (noun) music to a song

MITCH MILLER (1911-2010): (proper noun) an American POP music MUSICIAN, singer, and recorded music PRODUCER. He played the oboe and English horn. As a PRODUCER, he made POP songs sound CHEERFUL. He also chose many NOVELTY songs to record. Some people did not like his work.

NOVELTY: (adjective) new, different, and interesting

POM-POM: (noun) a soft round object made the yarn and sewed onto the center top of a knit cap

POP: (adjective) popular, liked by many people

PRODUCER: (noun) someone who is in charge of making a movie, television show, or recording of music

REINDEER: (noun) a large type of deer that live in northern parts of the world where people keep them LIKE CATTLE OR HORSES. In some northern areas such as Alaska, the same animals are called caribou.

SLEIGH: (noun) a large, open vehicle usually pulled by horses (but Santa’s is pulled by reindeer, eight of them!)

SOLOIST: (noun) a person who sings alone in a singing event

TASSEL: (noun) a thick group of strings tied together at one end and sewed onto the center top of a knit cap

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Happy New Year, Everyone!

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My gratitude to Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary online for assistance in defining terminology in this post.

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© Deborah M., Your Wise Aunt at WyzAnt Tutoring, 2011. All rights reserved.