Make new friends,
But keep the old,
One is silver and the other gold.
In the 1970s, thousands of Girl Scouts and Brownies would link arms, stand in friendship circles and sing these lyrics. These words were actually part of a poem written by Joseph Parry who was born in 1841. 1841! Here we are in the year 2021 and the words remain timeless. Why is that?
It’s because music and lyrics tug at our heartstrings. They can cut through all the mumbo jumbo of daily life and instantly lift our spirits. They can become time machines and take us straight back to when we were 8 years old, just like that.
In keeping with the theme of friendship, did you know that if you research the dates of National Friendship Day or International Friendship Day, the dates vary? Sometimes the date falls in June or July. Sometimes it’s August. But does it really matter when you celebrate it? After all, friendship matters every day!
In these current times when peace, love, and friendship are so sorely needed, why not use the last weeks of school to promote friendship?
Select a lyric a week or even one a day. Play it. Have your students ‘feel’ it. Talk about what a friend does and says. Play a ‘get to know you’ game like ‘Human Bingo’. Pair students (as opposed to letting students pick their own partners) and have them work together on a scavenger hunt or a team-building activity. Have a ‘You’ve Got a Friend Day’ each week where paired students seek at least 3 ways to encourage one another, work together on a project or simply play at recess together.
Like a true friend, age doesn’t matter. As such, you will find lyrics in this collection that are both beloved classics and invigorating newbies! Enjoy!