9 Reasons Why You Should Use Songs to Teach English as a Foreign Language
- May 8, 2017
- Posted by: marlenedubois
- Category: CPR Training
Using Songs to Teach Foreign Language
Language teachers can as well as should use songs as part of their classroom teaching repertoire. Songs contain authentic language, are easily obtainable, provide vocabulary, grammar as well as cultural aspects as well as are fun for the students. They can provide valuable speaking, listening as well as language practice in as well as out of the classroom. Some key reasons songs can work exceedingly well within the foreign language classroom include the following:
1. Songs almost always contain authentic, natural language
This particular often contrasts the contrived, stilted language found in many student texts. Of course songs can also go to the additional extreme by using overly crude, foul or otherwise objectionable language. With careful screening, an extensive library of usable songs for language learning can be compiled.
2. A variety of completely new vocabulary can be introduced to students through songs
Looking to boost student vocabulary with useful phrases, vocabulary as well as expressions? Songs are almost always directed to the native-speaking population so they usually contain contemporary vocabulary, idioms as well as expressions.
3. Songs are usually very easily obtainable
Cibemba as well as Silozi non-withstanding, songs are usually not which difficult to obtain. Local sources may be available including the students themselves. There’s always the internet which can connect you with song downloads in all yet the most obscure languages.
4. Songs can be selected to suit the needs as well as interests of the students
In English especially, so many songs are available which selection of songs with suitable themes, levels as well as vocabulary is usually not at all difficult. Allowances can also be made for complexity or simplicity of language, depending on the students, by selecting as well as using suitable songs.
5. Grammar as well as cultural aspects can be introduced through songs
Most if not all songs have a recurring theme or story. So excerpting cultural elements is usually usually a possible, yet often overlooked aspect of using songs. I still use “Hit the Road Jack” sung by the late Ray Charles to illustrate spoken contractions. He uses spoken contractions is usually virtually every line of the song.
6. Time length is usually easily controlled
Whether you have an hour, 30 minutes, or only 15 minutes or so, a song can be used within the course of a planned lesson. Use of songs is usually very flexible.
7. Students can experience a wide range of accents
A Great thing about songs is usually which you can expose the students to many different kinds of English. British English, American English, Caribbean English are all widely available through songs. Accents too are well represented by songs through different regions as well as in a variety of types as well as formats. Gospel, soul, R & B, Pop, Rock, Reggae, Jazz as well as additional styles change not only accents, yet vocabulary as well as usage too.
8. Song lyrics can be used in relating to situations of the globe around us
Songs have been used as vehicles of protest for civil rights, workers rights, even prisoner’s rights along with an untold number of additional causes. They’ve expounded on pollution, crime, war as well as almost every social theme or cause. We won’t even mention how many songs are about, related to or explore the theme of sex.
9. Students think songs are natural as well as fun
Well actually they are, aren’t they? Fun, even silly songs abound in English. Some singers actually made a career out of them. (Ray Stevens, anyone?) They make offbeat, fun adjustments of pace with classroom use.
These are only some of the many reasons songs are useful within the language learning classroom. They contain authentic language, are easily obtainable, provide vocabulary, grammar as well as cultural aspects as well as are fun for the students. They provide enjoyable speaking, listening, vocabulary as well as language practice both in as well as out of the classroom. So EFL, English as a foreign language, ESL, English as a Second language as well as foreign language teachers should all consider using songs as a regular part of their classroom activities.