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Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song

In Mudcat MIDIs:
Geography Song (Green Little Islands)


Joe Offer 11 Jun 03 - 12:07 PM
Joe Offer 11 Jun 03 - 12:18 PM
IanC 11 Jun 03 - 12:28 PM
Charley Noble 11 Jun 03 - 01:01 PM
GUEST, GEST 11 Jun 03 - 01:44 PM
Joe Offer 11 Jun 03 - 03:28 PM
GUEST,Q 11 Jun 03 - 04:10 PM
GUEST, GEST 11 Jun 03 - 05:24 PM
Giac 11 Jun 03 - 06:03 PM
Joe Offer 11 Jun 03 - 06:13 PM
GUEST,Q 11 Jun 03 - 08:13 PM
IanC 12 Jun 03 - 04:09 AM
GUEST,Q 12 Jun 03 - 03:18 PM
Joe Offer 20 May 04 - 12:28 AM
Q 20 May 04 - 01:27 PM
GUEST,Bob Richmond 17 Aug 05 - 11:50 PM
Joe Offer 18 Aug 05 - 04:35 AM
GUEST,provoeditor 29 Oct 06 - 01:27 AM
Charley Noble 29 Oct 06 - 10:10 AM
GUEST,zoe 03 Jun 08 - 11:28 AM
Jim Dixon 04 Jun 08 - 01:28 PM
Jim Dixon 21 Dec 08 - 01:16 AM
GUEST 09 Apr 13 - 11:04 AM
Jim Dixon 09 Apr 13 - 11:12 PM
Jim Dixon 09 Apr 13 - 11:34 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 12:07 PM

I'm reading Brunvand's The Study of American Folklore, and he mentions a song called "Green Little Islands" that was used for teaching geography. All I can find on the Web is one verse. Can anybody supply the rest, and the tune?
Here's what I have:

    Oh say have you heard geography sung
    For if you've not 'tis on my tongue
    About the earth in air that's hung
    All covered with green little islands.
-Joe Offer-
I found a version at Kididddles, but I can't tell what's traditional and what has been added to the song.


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Subject: DTADD: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 12:18 PM

This site and Kididdles seem to have the same lyrics:

Oh! Have you heard Geography sung?
For if you've not, it's on my tongue;
About the Earth in space that's hung,
All covered with little green islands.
Oceans, gulfs, and bays, and seas;
Channels and straits, rivers and streams;
Great Archipelagoes, too, and all these
Are covered with little green islands.

All o'er the earth are water and land,
Beneath the ships, or where we stand,
And far beyond the ocean strand
Are thousands of little green islands.
Continents and capes there are,
Isthmus and then peninsula,
Mountains and valleys, and shore, stretching far,
And thousands of little green islands.

All o'er the globe some circles are found;
From east to west they stretch around.
Some go from north to southern bound,
Right over the little green islands.
Great equator, tropics two,
Latitude lines, longitude too,
Cold arctic circles, and all these go thro'
The thousands of little green islands.

To Planet Earth forever commit,
A promise to take care of it.
Don't ever sway a little bit;
Or we'll lose our little green islands.
Here's one thing that you can do:
Reduce, re-use, recycle, too,
Take care of earth, it will take care of you,
So we'll always have our green islands.

I gather the last verse is new and the others are traditional. Am I right? Anybody know anything else about the song? Know of a printed source? I got the MIDI from Kididdles.

Click to play


Edith Fowke makes mention of the song on this page, which is a fascinating resource about a number of songs.


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Subject: Lyr Add: GEOGRAPHY SONG
From: IanC
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 12:28 PM

Joe

Try here

Geography Song
Words and Music By: Unknown

Oh! Have you heard Geography sung?
For if you've not, it's on my tongue;
About the Earth in space that's hung,
All covered with little green islands.
Oceans, gulfs, and bays, and seas;
Channels and straits, rivers and streams;
Great Archipelagoes, too, and all these
Are covered with little green islands.

All o'er the earth are water and land,
Beneath the ships, or where we stand,
And far beyond the ocean strand
Are thousands of little green islands.
Continents and capes there are,
Isthmus and then peninsula,
Mountains and valleys, and shore, stretching far,
And thousands of little green islands.

All o'er the globe some circles are found;
From east to west they stretch around.
Some go from north to southern bound,
Right over the little green islands.
Great equator, tropics two,
Latitude lines, longitude too,
Cold arctic circles, and all these go thro'
The thousands of little green islands.

To Planet Earth forever commit,
A promise to take care of it.
Don't ever sway a little bit;
Or we'll lose our little green islands.
Here's one thing that you can do:
Reduce, re-use, recycle, too,
Take care of earth, it will take care of you,
So we'll always have our green islands.


:-)
Ian


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Charley Noble
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 01:01 PM

Missed this one as a singer and an overqualified but underworked geographer. Thanks for posting the inquiry, Joe.

Charley Noble, Ph.D. Urban Economic Geography, Michigan State University, 1974


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: GUEST, GEST
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 01:44 PM

Great Archipelagoes, too, and all these
Are covered with little green islands.

The use of the word archipelagoes in this song is not correct, a good reason for teachers not to use it for it's apparent educational value. :-(

The island I live on is the largest island of a Canadian archipelago. We cannot be covered with little green islands because we are one of many little green islands. ~grin~


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 03:28 PM

Kididdles says the song was adapted by Terry Kluytmans, Adaptation Copyright © 2000 Terry Kluytmans. I think Kluytmans is associated with Kididdles some way, and my guess is that the other two sites got their lyrics from Kididdles, and that it's the last verse that was added by Kluytmans. I'm still wondering how the long-ago version of this song was worded, and if there is any background information. I'd guess that this song is not truly traditional - probably written by Miss Primandproper, who worked in the back room at Ginn & Co.
My guess is she'd never seen an archipelago.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 04:10 PM

Hooray, it's pedantry time!

Gest, my North American dictionary says an archipelago (1.) is an expanse of water with many scattered islands. As such, the song is correct. An alternate choice is (2.) a group of islands. As such, you are correct. Merriam Webster's Collegiate.

However, you lose if the OED is consulted:
1. The Aegean Sea (between Greece and Asia Minor), by definition in a treaty of 1268 between the Venetians and the Emperor Palaeologus. The first usage of the word (the word was unknown to the ancient Greeks, but has entered modern Greek).
2. Any sea, or sheet of water, in which there are numerous islands. Parmentier, a Frenchman, is responsible for this modern definition (1528).
The OED does not admit the definition, "a group of islands."

They do quote Mark Twain, who mentioned "Gravy, archipelagoed with mushrooms" (A Tramp Abroad, 1880).

Joe, that should be Ms Primandproper, not Miss. P....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands (Q)
From: GUEST, GEST
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 05:24 PM

B, b, b, but, Q..... How can an expanse of water with many scattered islands (as per your N.A. Dictionary) be covered with little green islands? The little green islands are already a part of the archipelago by definition, eh? Even the OED says an archipelago is water with islands, not just water which little green islands can cover. Therein lies the rub.

On the other hand, although I agree with Merriam Webster's Collegiate, I never said an archipelago was merely a group of islands. The archipelago where I live is many islands as well as many bays, inlets, harbors, coves, etc., near the mouth of a geographically large bay, opening to an ocean. As such, I defend my statement that an archipelago cannot be covered with little green islands. :-)

Semantics.... gotta love 'em, eh?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Giac
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 06:03 PM

Tiny thread drift--

My late mom taught me to spell geography the way she was taught in the early 1900s:

George
Edward's
Old
Goose
Rode
A
Pig
Home
Yesterday

~;o) Mary


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 06:13 PM

Hi, Mary - that was mentioned on the same page of the Brunvand folklore book, except that it was
    George Elliot's old grandmother rode a pig home yesterday.
...so it isn't thread drift...

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 08:13 PM

Hi, Gest! I think the problem lies in the grammar in the song, which is on the grade three level.

The song-
"Great archipelago(e)s too, and all these
Are covered with little green islands."

Suggested revision-
Great archipelagos too, and in these
Are scattered little green islands.

This is better (I think).
I agree that the song needs a rewrite.
"All o'er the globe some circles are found..." Can't you just see them? "Some go from north to southern bound...??

No, not written by Ms Primandproper, but by one of her more 'challenged' pupils.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: IanC
Date: 12 Jun 03 - 04:09 AM

Q

I think you may be missing out on some of the subtleties of the English language ... in my dialect (which is not unrepresentative of Souther England at least) "covered with" can - and frequently does - mean something like "full of" in the way it is used here.

;-)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 12 Jun 03 - 03:18 PM

Local English dialects offer a challenge that is almost insurmountable, since, I have been told, word meanings may (or used to) differ between adjacent villages.
No complaint about your dialect, IanC- dialects are the spice in our olla podrida of a language, but they may also beg comprehension outside their area of use.


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Subject: ADD: I Love Geography
From: Joe Offer
Date: 20 May 04 - 12:28 AM

I've been looking for this song for a friend of mine for years, and finally I found it. I thought I had posted it here, but I can't find it. I'm looking for a printed source of the song to verify the lyrics - and for a tune, if possible.
-Joe Offer-

from http://user.icx.net/~richmond/rsr/mtjs/appreciation.html

I LOVE GEOGRAPHY
(Wilson??)

Maine is an island in Asia, France is a river in Spain,
Coconuts grow on a mountain of snow,
Deserts are covered with rain;
China is bordered by Norway, Texas is south of Peru,
Persia's a sea, and Vermont is a tree,
I adore knowledge, don't you?

I love ge-og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy
I love ge-og-ra-phy, with rapture the pages I turn.
I love ge-og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy
I love ge-og-ra-phy, because it's so easy to learn.

Crocodiles come from Chicago, rivers flow backward up-hill
Grass is quite rare, the equator is square,
Utah is east of Brazil.
Kansas is full of volcanoes, Switzerland's right on the coast.
Knowledge, you see, simply fascinates me,
I love ge-og-ra-phy most.


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Subject: ADD: Geography (Canadian)
From: Q
Date: 20 May 04 - 01:27 PM

GEOGRAPHY (Canadian)

The book that seems the best to me
Is my big Geography,
It takes me right to Timbuctoo,
Far off across the sea.

I do not have to fly or sail,
If I wish to reach Siam;
Just open my Geography,
And there at once I am.

French-Canadian Folk Song, English words by Clinton Scollard. Original not cited. The Music Hour, Fourth Book, 1929, 1937, Silver Burdett Co., p. 25 with music.
I will send the music to Joe.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: GUEST,Bob Richmond
Date: 17 Aug 05 - 11:50 PM

Hi Joe Offer!

Last year you posted a note about the I Love Geography song. I'm the guy who wrote the Web page it appears on. What's on that page is pretty much what I know about it. I remember the tune - more or less, after 55 years - and could sing it to you.

Bob Richmond


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 Aug 05 - 04:35 AM

Hi, Bob -
Thanks for responding. I'll contact you by e-mail.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: Joe Offer
From: GUEST,provoeditor
Date: 29 Oct 06 - 01:27 AM

RE: I love geography song

Dear Joe Offer --


My mother used to sing the "I love geography" song to me when I was a child 50 years ago. I know the tune very well, but I am not a musician so I can't set the notes down. If you want to e-mail me I'll arrange to call you and sing it to you over the phone. provoeditor@hotmail.com


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Charley Noble
Date: 29 Oct 06 - 10:10 AM

A license should clearly be required before a person be allowed to practice ge-og-ra-phy.

I suppose that some may be amused by such ditties as are posted above. However, I find these verses specious.

Charley Noble, Mudcat Resident Geographer


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: GUEST,zoe
Date: 03 Jun 08 - 11:28 AM

that song is the best thing ever.
I LOVE GEOGRAPHY(:


xxo


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 04 Jun 08 - 01:28 PM

On the subject of "singing geography," you might be interested in some information I posted in the thread RE: Lyr Req: state capitols / state capitals.


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Subject: Lyr Add: GEOGRAPHY SONG (Slade, 1877)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 21 Dec 08 - 01:16 AM

Note the original version had "green little" rather than "little green" throughout; also "air", not "space", and "polar" not "arctic." (In the latter case, the original was right and the revision wrong!) And the fourth verse is completely different.

From Pennsylvania School Journal, Vol. XXVIII, 1879

GEOGRAPHY SONG
Mrs. M. B. C. Slade, from "Golden Robin" [1877]

1. Oh! Have you heard Geography sung?
For if you've not, it's on my tongue;
About the Earth in air that's hung,
All covered with green little islands.
Oceans, gulfs, and bays, and seas;
Channels and straits, sounds, if you please;
Great Archipelagoes, too, and all these
Are covered with green little islands.

2. All o'er the earth are water and land,
Beneath the ships, or where we stand,
And far beyond the ocean strand
Are thousands of green little islands.
Continents and capes there are,
Isthmus and then peninsula,
Mountain and valley, and shore stretching far,
And thousands of green little islands.

3. All o'er the globe some circles are found:
From east to west they stretch around.
Some go from north to southern bound,
Right over the green little islands.
Great equator, tropics two,
Latitude lines, longitude too,
Cold polar circles, and all these go thro'
The thousands of green little islands.

4. Oh! don't you think 'tis pleasant to know
About the sea and land just so?
And how the lines, the circles, go
Right over the green little islands.
Now you hear how we can sing;
This is, to-day, all we can bring.
Come again soon, and then you shall hear sung
The names of the green little islands.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Apr 13 - 11:04 AM

About 50 years ago my mom used to sing that song about "Maine is an island in Asia, France is a river in Spain." I'd love to find the sheet music for it. any idea where it could be located? BJardine@jbhhlaw.com. Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 09 Apr 13 - 11:12 PM

Joe McGinnis quotes the song in his true-crime book Cruel Doubt (New York : Simon & Schuster, 1991), page 89:

His favorite, which she never forgot, was one he called "The Geography Song":

Maine is an island in Asia,
France is a river in Spain.
Coconuts grow on a mountain of snow,
Deserts are covered with rain.
Crocodiles come from Chicago,
Silver is mixed in a mill,
Grass is quite rare,
The equator is square,
And Kansas is south of Brazil.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Green Little Islands - geography song
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 09 Apr 13 - 11:34 PM

From some 7th-grade teaching materials prepared in 1950 in San Antonio, TX, found here.


I LOVE GEOGRAPHY

Maine is an island in Asia, France is a river in Spain,
Coconuts grow on a mountain of snow,
Deserts are covered with rain;
China is bordered by Norway, Texas is south of Peru,
Persia's a sea, and Vermont is a tree,
I adore knowledge, don't you?

I love ge-og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy
I love ge-og-ra-phy, with rapture the pages I turn.
I love ge-og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy, og-ra-phy
I love ge-og-ra-phy, because it's so easy to learn.

Crocodiles come from Chicago, rivers flow backward up-hill
Grass is quite rare, the equator is square,
Utah is east of Brazil.
Kansas is full of volcanoes, Switzerland's right on the coast.
Knowledge, you see, simply fascinates me,
I love ge-og-ra-phy most.


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