The Musical Cockroach


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An e-book collaboration by a Year 4 class

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p. 1

The Musical Cockroach By Room 13 Elm Park School 2014


p. 2

Once, a courageous cockroach decided that he had to leave his family and make his way in the world. He lived in a dingy, damp basement of a house together with his mother and father and 587 siblings. He was named #49 by his parents when he was born. As he grew up into a sturdy young cockroach he found himself wishing he could live in the warmth and light with the family upstairs. They had children who laughed and played for hours. He heard music every day and grew to adore it. He would sneak upstairs and watch the little girl having her piano lessons. "Allegro! Allegro!" said the girl's music teacher as she played. The cockroach loved the word so much he decided to change his name.


p. 3

At a family meeting Allegro poured his heart out. "I just don't feel like all my brothers and sisters," he said. "I want to eat fresh, healthy food not rotting scraps, cardboard and glue. I love music and laughter. I like the daylight and I like people." "But they will always try to hurt you they'll squash you," shouted his mother. "You'll get stomped on and squished!" cried his favourite little sister #586. Allegro's mother sobbed, "Please don't go!" But his mind was made up. "I have to live in the world of music", he said as he hugged them all.


p. 4

So off into the world he went. He felt a little fearful but he carried a song in his heart that he had heard the little girl singing one day - Nga Iwi E. He scuttled across a huge green field and came to a blue fence. Beyond it he saw a welcoming structure, and lots of buildings and plants.


p. 5

There was no one about. He decided to have a look around. After several hours he finally trudged along a deck... ......and up some stairs. "Hmm....what interesting patterns," he said to himself as he climbed.


p. 6

He climbed up the door. There was no one around. "It must be the weekend," he thought to himself.


p. 7

"Hmm...This looks like an interesting number. I'll see if this classroom is a good place to live." He drew in his breath, made himself paper-thin, and squeezed under the door. As he gazed around the room at all the colourful things he knew that he could live there happily. "But, only if they have lots of music!" he reminded himself.


p. 8

On the first day he was really happy to be in the lovely classroom. He wanted to rush out and make friends with the children but he remembered his mother's words, "Remember son, people will always try to squash you!" Then he would rush out and explore things that had caught his eye... So he moved cautiously around the classroom without a sound. He desperately wanted to look at all the interesting things but he had to wait until he was alone. He learned to keep a sharp lookout ...


p. 9

On Monday he clambered over an intriguing black box at the front of the classroom. It had lots of shiny knobs and buttons but he was not strong enough to move them. "I wonder if this box can make music," he whispered to himself.


p. 10

On Tuesday, at playtime, he crawled out from his hiding place and went to look at a piece of paper that was lying on the mat. "Oh my!" he thought giddily to himself, "This is a piece of music because I can see music notes on the page like the music in the piano room! I wonder what song it is. I wish I could read." Allegro was really excited, "This must be a song the children are learning. I will listen and learn it too. I wonder what it is called?"


p. 11

On Wednesday he crawled out of his hidey hole at lunchtime and went to explore some very big, colourful mountains on the floor. They were so slippery it took him a long time to get to the top. "I've never seen these things before... I wonder what the class does with them?" he mused to himself. In the afternoon, Allegro heard the teacher say, "It's time for Drumbeat. Please collect your drum and come to the mat." "Could the class be about to play music?" he asked himself hopefully. Allegro was amazed and loved the drums. He loved all the drumming patterns. "A drum is an instrument but I wonder if I can find something that can make even better music?" he wondered.


p. 12

On Thursday, at playtime, Allegro had a little time to explore some odd looking plastic pipes in a clear plastic box. "This long yellow pipe could make a good home for a cockroach," he thought to himself. "I love yellow because it is the colour of the sun." But Allegro was disappointed as the box of interesting pipes was taken out of the room by a teacher and he didn't get to learn what they were...


p. 13

On Thursday night Allegro crawled into a funny shaped black box with a handle. He remembered seeing the little girl's big brother playing a guitar and it had a box like this. But this guitar box had shrunk. It was a bit dark inside but it felt like home.


p. 14

On Friday, half of the class had its ukulele lesson. The children sat down, tuned their instruments and practiced some chords for a warm up. The teacher picked up her ukulele case, laid it down on the floor, snapped the catches and opened the lid...


p. 15

She froze in horror. Out crawled a very sleepy Allegro. He blinked his eyes and into focus came the teacher, pointing at him... She uttered a small screech. "I'll be back in a jiffy, tamariki," she said, "There's a cockroach to get rid of!" "NO!" shouted the children, "Don't kill it. It is a musical cockroach!"



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