Pennsylvania Ethnic Heritage Studies Center, University Center for International Studies, University of Pittsburgh



LESSON TITLE: Drumbeats and Heartbeats GRADE LEVEL: 7-8th Grades OBJECTIVES: This lesson will be taught as a supplemental lesson integrating music, literature, and art into an American History Unit on the Civil War. The student will be able to: a. Understand the importance of the drummer boy b. Understand the use of the drum on the battlefield c. Gain insight into the reflections and emotions of the drummer boys of the Civil War. d. Gain perspective and empathy on the battle of Shiloh through songs e. Respond to the songs and literature presented MATERIALS: a. Class set of "The Drummer Boy of Shiloh" by Ray Bradbury b. Class set of the song "The Drummer Boy of Shiloh" by W. S. Hays c. Class set of "In the Hills of Shiloh" by Shel Silverstein d. Class set of American History Books e. Computers with internet access f. Guitar or recording of songs g. Map of the United States This lesson may be easily expanded. The music component could be expanded with recordings of different drum cadences used to communicate in battle. Students could also research other songs of the Civil War for their historical content. Another way to expand this lesson would be to incorporate the many different versions of the drummer boy story into a lesson on evaluating sources when doing research.


No definitive answer was ever known.Pennsylvania Ethnic Heritage Studies Center. University of Pittsburgh 2 PROCEDURES AND ACTIVITIES: Day 1: I. Jesse Nelson. C. John Clem. Talk about the role of the drummer boy in the Civil War 1. Truth has been blurred with folklore and imagination. and many others claimed the title of "Drummer Boy of Shiloh" 1. University Center for International Studies. also at Chicamaugua. Many others claimed to be the "Drummer Boy of Shiloh". 20. He was the claimant most often thought to be the inspiration for "Drummer Boy of Shiloh" 3. 3. Their function was to play a marching cadence to the beat of the drum 5. Went into battle with troops 3.000 died. Shiloh. Jesse Nelson: 10 year-old drummer boy whom many say was killed at Shiloh when he threw down his drum to fight. and for many years obituaries would appear across the United States claiming that the deceased was the "Drummer Boy of Shiloh". (it was not considered honorable to shoot a drummer boy) 2.000 injured. but much that was written about the "Drummer Boy" is imaginary. John Clem: drummer boy at Shiloh. 4. Locate on map of United States 2. After the battle. Introduction with pictures of drummer boys A. bloodiest battle of the Civil War to that point B. Often as young as 10 (John Clem) 2. Carried no weapons 4. . they often carried the wounded on stretchers and buried the dead. Tennessee 1.

What is the drummer boy doing? 2. Remind students about the uses of the drum on the Civil War battlefields. Thomas D. Hays A. Review information and story from day one. and Jones. II. Discuss song: 1. Compare and contrast song to "Drummer Boy of Shiloh" song. Prentice Hall Literature : Timeless Voices. B. The Boys' War. U. Listen to song. University Center for International Studies.: Scholastic. Timeless Themes. Discuss song.43. 39 . Read verses from song: "The Drummer Boy of Shiloh" by W. C. Students will imagine themselves in the place of the "Drummer Boy of Shiloh" and write diary entries or letters home from the drummer boy's perspective. 2003 Murphy. S.A. IV. Sing "In the Hills of Shiloh" with teachers. June A. Students will be write song lyrics about a major historical event. University of Pittsburgh 3 Day 2: I.. Jim.S. Read song: "In the Hills of Shiloh" by Shel Silverstein A. A. New York. Sing "Drummer Boy of Shiloh" with teachers. Why do you think this song was written? B. What is happening? 2. 1990 pp. Inc. Evaluation: A. 1. What emotions are evident? B. September.) REFERENCES: English. B..Pennsylvania Ethnic Heritage Studies Center. We have chosen one song which was written shortly after battle and one modern song about Shiloh. Shiloh and the drummer boy have captured the hearts and imagination of people for almost 150 years. (Music may also be written for extra credit or as an extension of the evaluation. III. NY: Scholastic Inc. What is happening? 2. 1. New Jersey: Pearson Education. Encyclopedia of the United States at War. 2005 INTERNET RESOURCES: .

htm http://www.Pennsylvania Ethnic Heritage Studies Center.jpg .htm University Center for International University of Pittsburgh 4 http://www.sdcoe.htm http://spider.html LINK TO THE SONG: In The Hills of Shiloh: