Learning the Beat

K, 1, 2

The purpose of this lesson is to have the children identify the value of the gifts in the folktale "The Drum." They brainstorm gifts they have to give (time, talent, and treasure) and the value these gifts may have to others.

PrintOne 45-Minute Session

The learner will:

  • identify the gifts given and received in the story and discuss the needs and motivations of the givers.
  • brainstorm gifts of time, talent, and treasure young people can share to address another's needs.
  • a collection of sticks (these may be from outside or around the house/building: a variety of sizes, shapes, colors, finishes, and uses)
  • read-aloud copy of the folktale "The Drum" (Hindi) See Bibliography below.
  • six copies of the handout The Value of a Gift

Learning to Give Hindi folktale "The Drum" www.learningtogive.org/resources/drum


  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Before reading "The Drum," ask the learners to listen for what gifts are given throughout the story.

  2. After reading, ask the listeners to recall in order the gifts the boy gave. Discuss why they think the boy gave each of the items away. Discuss whether the boy could have used the items himself and whether he expected anything in return. Write each item on a separate piece of paper. 

  3. Put the learners in six small groups. Give them one of the papers with a gift written on it. In their group they discuss the value of their assigned gift item from the story, using the questions in the handout Value of a Gift

  4. Bring all of the groups together and discuss and come to a consensus about the value of the items in order from least valuable to most valuable. The discussion may compare monetary value and value based on need. For example, the item that is most valuable to the boy is the drum, but it may not have the highest monetary value. Discuss the theme of generosity in the story.

  5. Tell the learners that they each have gifts of their own to share with others who might need them. These gifts may be in the form of time, talent, or treasure. Brainstorm examples of time, talent, and treasure they have to give.

    Examples: Time (spending time with someone who is lonely), Talent (teaching someone how to skateboard), and Treasure (donating gently used clothes, books, and toys).

  6. Tell the learners that one talent they have is the ability to hear rhythm and understand patterns. Tell them that you will drum a pattern with your hands on your legs, and you want them to repeat the pattern with their hands on their legs. Drum different patterns and enjoy the musical experience. Allow others to take the leadership role of setting a pattern to copy.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 01. Define Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.1 Define philanthropy as the giving and sharing of time, talent, or treasure intended for the common good.