Lesson 2: Exploring “Just a Dream”

Aim: How can we explore different interpretations of “Just a Dream” through movement?
Summary: Students create movements to the verse of “Just a Dream” to express different interpretations of the song.
Materials: Musical Explorers CD or online audio, Musical Explorers Student Guide, chart paper, marker
Standards: US 1, 2, 3.1, 3.2, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 6, 7.1, 8, 9, 10, 11; GA 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9; SC 1, 4, 5, 6
Time Required: 30 minutes (one 10-minute activity, one 20-minute activity)
Vocabulary: interpretation

Sing “Just a Dream”

  • Listen to “Just a Dream,” Track 28.
  • Learn the chorus to “Just a Dream,” Track 29.
  • Review verse and chorus (Unit 2, Lesson 1). This song has a chorus and verses, just like our song
    “Cluck Old Hen.”
  • Even though the second half of the chorus is a little bit different each time, the first part remains the same. Eric sings, “It was a dream, just a dream I had on my mind.”
  • Read the lyrics to your class.

Just a Dream

It was a dream, a dream I had on my mind
It was a dream, a dream I had on my mind
You know when I woke up this morning
Not a thing could I find

I dreamed I went up to heaven
And had a real good time
I dreamed I was satisfied
And nothing to worry my mind

But it was just a dream
A dream I had on my mind
When I woke up this morning
Not an angel could I find

I dreamed I went to the White House
Sat in the President’s chair
I dreamed he shook my hand, and said
“Eric, I’m glad you’re here”

But it was a dream
A dream I had on my mind
When I woke up this morning
Not a chair could I find

I dreamed I was a millionaire,
And won the lottery too
I dreamed I had so much money,
I didn’t know what to do

But that was just a dream, Lord,
What a dream I had on my mind,
Now when I woke up, baby,
Not a penny there could I find

Explore “Just A Dream” through Movement

  • When performing artists such as musicians and dancers perform a piece of music or a dance, they bring their own ideas or story to the way that they perform the piece. This is also known as interpretation. Two artists could perform the exact same song but in very different ways.
  • This song is another blues song like “Little Red Rooster.” We all can interpret the feeling of a song in different ways.

    • Interpretation is a way that each person can make a song that everyone might know all their own,
      just like we saw here.
    • How would you interpret this blues song? When you hear the words “dream,” “heaven,” and “lovely,”
      what do you think of? How would you say these words?
  • Read the verses aloud to students. As a class, create movements to go with verse (e.g., wiggling your hands next to your face like for “dream,” or reaching up to the sky for “heaven”).
  • Divide the class into groups of 4-5 students around the classroom.
  • Assign each group the first verse to create their own interpretive movement. Each group will be assigned the same verse to see the variety in interpretation.
  • Each group will come up with its own movement interpretation of the verse and present it to the class. Every group will perform the same movement for the chorus.

    • What did we discover when we watched each other’s dances? Were there similarities? What parts? What was different? Was the message of the song still the same or was it different?

Creative Extension: What if your dream came true?

Using SG31, ask students to draw a picture of one of their favorite dreams, one they wish would come true. Then ask them to draw a picture of how the dream makes them feel.

Musical Word Wall

Add the word interpretation to the Musical Word Wall.


PDF Downloads

SG31 ↓ Download File