To Be A Drum read by James Earl Jones

To Be A Drum is written by Evelyn Coleman, illustrated by Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson and read by James Earl Jones. Daddy Wes whispers to his two young listeners one morning the story of the ‘drum,’ the pulse that has moved through the African people and through time and place.


Welcome to Storyline online, brought to you by Screen Actors Guild Foundation. My name is James Earl Jones. You might wonder why I’m doing the reading and not you. I’ll give you a hint. It’s all as I am, I still need practice because I learned to read quite early by the time I was four. But I didn’t read out loud until I was 14 because I didn’t talk. See, I’m a stutterer and I’m also somewhat dyslexic. But we’ll try this anyway. Today. I’m reading to be a drum. Written by Evelyn Coleman. The artwork is by Amina, Brendan then Robinson. During a morning he missed. The fog swirled up around Matt, mother, and daddy. And when they’re sad cross-link. It couldn’t be seen from afar. But they were there. Then daddy was told them a story in a soft voice. The voice that could Tap, Tap matter and Martha, gender under arms. Daddy West began long before I. Before hours, minutes, seconds. On the continent of Africa, the rhythm of the earth beat for the first people. Fill the air with spirit. The spirit rose and the wind and flew into our bodies. And our own arms. Beat time. We were a lie. The beach moved through our bodies. I think that is how our drumbeat was born. With the dragon spoke to the animals into the heart, beat out the rhythm of their heels. We listen. Sound that the ribbons back. Then men from another continent came. Men who would not listen to the rhythm of the earth. They shackled us scholar and flung us into the valleys of shifts, bringing us enslaved across the ocean and the sea. It for us apart from one another, do not allow us to speak languages. We weren’t lost. We were no longer free. We thought we were. Then to drums away. But cruelty cannot stop the Earth’s heart from beating. The Earth Spirit moved through a still and pushed. I’m only our fingers around our bodies. And we became the drums living drum beating for the whole year and see where we’re alive free. So when we worked in the fields, when we sang song, starlit, sky, mouse, drag, talk to each other. The latest speech. Stitched our groups to be dry hands. Important. When we invented thing. I’m Dr. When we fought for freedom, for civil rights. Natal communities. When we created new sculpt, dances and trombones, need our art. When we wrote down our wisdom, made our storage Trump, recorded our memories. They made history is trillions. When we became farm scientists, teachers, entrepreneurs, crazy people, made a tree trunk. With the Earth’s people. We were living drums. He would always be free. Daddy West leaned over and spread this to you. Here. Is stressed out on the Earth. Is arms spread like a bird’s we mad and Martha laid down close beside, input their ears to the ground. It waited for the magic. To me, there’s waited for the hearing of the earth heartbeat. We did to become i yr at daddy. Wes said, Martha, I don’t hear anything. Set Matte. You’ve got to let go, son. Anyways. Quiet and still new, cool to be strong. If you learn to be still. Met and had a deep sigh. His body relaxed like when he floated on the last page. I hear it anyways. I here too. He shouted, daddy was smile. What does that say? Martin month and daddy was all drummed it together. Now that both of your data set will always know other peed out your own rhythm on the end that it was Matt and mother took each other’s hands. Show from the field with a heartbeat, with the earth sounding though. You too can be free. Become a drum. (As provided by SchoolTube video transcript.)

Standards Alignment

Suggested Grade Level: 2-3

The standards listed below are for the 2nd and 3rd grades but can easily be modified for other grades.

CCSS.SL.2.1, CCSS.SL.3.1, CCSS.SL.2.2, CCSS.SL.3.2, CCSS.RL2.2, CCSS.SL.2.1, CCSS.RL.3.2, CCSS.SL3.1, CCSS.RL.2.1, CCSS.RL.3.1, CCSS.W.2.3, CCSS.RL.2.4, CCSS.W.3.3, CCSS.RL.3.4, CCSS.W.2.6, CCSS.W.2.7, CCSS.W.3.6, CCSS.W.3.7

View the activity guide here: tobeadrum

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