A Great Back-to-School Singing Game


“The Paw Paw Patch”

Whenever I play this game, many young children (and their
teachers) ask me what exactly a “pawpaw” is.

Well, those odd light green fruits above? Those are
pawpaws. They taste kind of like mango mixed with banana,
apparently (I’ve never tasted one). Anyway, a paw paw patch
is the setting for this traditional children’s game, which I 
love to play at the beginning of the school year as a 
getting-to-know-you activity. (It also helps ME learn the
children’s names – not easy when you go to six different

The class should be sitting in a circle on the floor. Show the 
children a small light blanket or large scarf and explain that
this will be the “paw paw patch.” Put it over your head and 
say you’re “hiding in the paw paw patch” and that they’re going
to pretend they don’t know where you are, and sing (to the tune
of “Hurry, Hurry, Drive the Fire Truck”:

       Where oh where is sweet little (Miss Abby)?
Where oh where is sweet little (Miss Abby)?
Where oh where is sweet little (Miss Abby)?
Way down yonder in the paw paw patch!

On the last line, dramatically lift the “paw paw patch” from
your head. There you are!

Continue with each child having a turn in the paw paw
patch. The class can clap to the song while they’re
learning the words. 

My three-to-five-year-olds always love this game, and it’s
a wonderful way to learn all the names of their new friends!


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