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Name of Activity:

Civil War Rhyme Time

Academic content:


Purpose of Activity:

To learn basic facts of the United States Civil War and to improve upon long rope jumping skills.


The students should be familiar with the Civil War and various terms associated with the war.
The students should have long jump roping skills including turning, jumping, entering, and exiting.
The students should recite this poem in the regular classrroom and be familiar with the words before taking it into the physical activity environment.

Suggested Grade Level:


Materials Needed:

One 16 foot jump rope per group, posters of the rhyme for each group.

Physical activity:

Jumping Rope

Description of Idea

Place the students into groups of four students. Be sure to have a poster with the words of the rhyme displayed at each group.


* Two students turn the rope and two students jump.

* The students will enter the jump rope and recite the poem while jumping. Additionally, they will perform the necessary actions.

* The two students continue jumping until the completion of the poem and then switch places with the turners. If a student misses a jump, they continue in the activity.

* The ultimate goal is to complete the jumping rhyme, saying all the words, with no misses.

Jump Rope Rhyme:

Studying the civil war of the United States (place hands into the shape of a book)
And working on remembering the dates
It all began with the battle of Bull Run (run in place while jumping)
Way back in 1861

President Lincoln was on a mission
The southern states wouldn’t listen (put a hand up to your ear)
One nation we needed to be ( put up one index finger to represent 1)
Without rebels and slavery

Ulysses S. Grant led the north
And with his troops he set forth (march while saluting your forehead)
The union was their name
And Infamous they became (take a bow in between jumping)

Then there was General Robert E Lee
Leading the south, the confederacy (march while saluting your forehead)
He led his troops with great pride
Fighting for a great divide ( jump with legs and arms spread apart)

Both sides set out strong and tall (flex muscles while jumping)
But Gettysburg changed it all
The Confederacy took a dive (put hands into a dive position while jumping)
They could no longer survive

In the spring of 1865
The south surrendered inevitably (student waves a white flag that they brought in while jumping)
The worst U.S. war was at an end
And both sided were left to mend (after leaving tie the white scarf around arm so that it can ‘mend’)

Assessment Ideas:

Provide a checklist for peer-assessment. A suggested checklist, includes:

_____ 1. Keeps eyes on the rope while jumping.

_____ 2. When entering, waits until the jump rope hits the floor, and then runs to the center and starts jumping.

_____ 3. When serving as a turner, watches the jumper’s feet.

_____ 4. Able to recite the poem while jumping.

+ You are a whiz at this!
O You can perform this skill sometimes, but you still need some practice.
- You have a hard time performing this skill. Practice will help!

Teaching Suggestions:

Teaching Cues to help teach Jump Rope:

1. Keep you eyes on the rope while jumping.

2. When entering, wait until the jump rope hits the floor, and then run to the center and start jumping.

3. Turners should watch the jumper’s feet.

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Submitted by Leah Sedlacek in Manitowoc, WI. Thanks for contributing to PE Central! Posted on PEC: 8/29/2008.

Viewed 54594 times since 4/6/2008.

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Previous Comments:

Wilton Sylvester

Its really fire!!! I am not going to listen to future and big sean any more I LOVE IT!