It is if to be good enough at using them. My experience tells of several ways to practice songs, so selected tunes have to meet particular requirements. Teachers ought to store songs with different lyrics and of different lengths (however, those lasting longer than 5 minutes appear tiring to students) and various genres. Starting the term, teachers could provide a survey to find out students’ favorite songs and analyze their lyrics. There won’t be surprising to find out that young people are real song experts, able to quote their loved masterpieces in significant volumes. Well, how to make songs improve language learning?
Teachers are supposed to feel the right moment for a musical break – students may get tired or have done the previous task too long, have proved a perfect rendition, deserving a song bonus etc. Consequently, songs help to chill out, make sure that British and Americans also use those boring tenses, drive audience’s attention to the frontmens’ pronunciation, making students follow them. A nice heritage mustn’t be left without interesting and useful tasks. For instance, some bizarre questions may be asked before listening (short songs may be repeated twice and provided with boss tasks for gist and for details). Some grammar structure examples can be found in songs, too (preliminary analyses of collected tunes must affect in this case). Lyrics with mistakes or gaps can also be printed out beforehand and handed out to be corrected or completed. Moreover, a great piece of music usually raises a serious issue to be discussed in pairs or mini-groups. Should students tend to draw pictures, they may be given a task to draw or paint a plot of a song. Alternatively, a phonetic exercise may be suggested which could provide focusing on particular sounds and finding them on handouts with lyrics. Singing along must be appreciated. The most advanced students may try to write their own poetical parodies on the song they’ve heard.
In a word, songs teach being an essential part of both pleasure and outcomes.
News prepared by Dr. V. Klochkov, associated professor of the English department