My students love a good mystery and really love secret codes. They get so excited to learn code songs and any song for that matter where the words have a double meaning.
I use "Follow the Drinking Gourd" and an introduction to African American music and then our unit progresses to spirituals and freedom songs. My students love the stories behind the songs and enjoy sharing what they have learned about slavery in their social studies lessons. I always like to add to their background knowledge and this song gives great opportunity to give them more knowledge of how slaves were able to escape to the north and also an understanding of how other code songs developed.
Check the notes below each slide for the meanings hidden in each verse.
**The last verse is one that had been added later on. The accompaniment I use only has room for three verses, but I will be adding the other verses shortly so check back for updates**