ESL teachers can use songs to teach English to their students with great success. ESL songs can bring energy to the classroom, boost students’ confidence, and provide a much-needed active learning experience for younger students who may easily become bored or distracted. They are great for adding motivation and excitement to your classroom routine!
Language integration through songs
Children hear complete sentences when they listen to songs; This helps them learn and remember words and phrases as they subconsciously learn about grammar and grammar. This leads them to use their new vocabulary naturally in context rather than isolated syllables or words.
Looping through the songs
Songs that “get stuck” in your students’ heads lead to a continuous cycle of learning – the more they hear the song and think about it, the easier it will be for them to learn all the words and their meanings. Songs are a wonderful and exciting alternative to standard reading comprehension, as they allow the child to actively participate.
Better classroom management with ESL songs
English songs can also help calm an excited or noisy class – just turn on the music and you’ll be amazed at how quickly kids will settle in. They can also bring new life and confidence to a group of struggling and overworked students. Just announce when it’s time to sing, and watch the students light up with interest.
Songs to teach English cover all learning styles
Language is one of the most complex subjects, and English is one of the most complex. Songs help teachers appeal to a wide range of learning styles:
Auditory learners learn easily from songs – rhythm and phrasing provide an ideal way to teach vocabulary and pronunciation, as well as to communicate words in context.
Kinesthetic and tactile learners can benefit from actions added to songs; Working with melody, rhythm, and words to provide actions that help these students absorb knowledge in a way that makes more sense to them.
Visual learners can be aided by story pictures or flashcards of vocabulary related to the song, as well as by watching other students and joining in actions that match different words.
Songs build confidence and make learning fun
ESL songs give children the opportunity to learn at their own pace within the group – instead of being singled out, they can listen and participate at their own pace, joining when they can and learning from the group around them. They can take comfort that everyone is also focusing on the lesson, and they will slowly build up the courage to add new words to their vocabulary and work on pronouncing them naturally.
The fact that songs are fun means that your students will be motivated to work even harder in anticipation of their sing-along time. Singing is an active activity that easily captures students’ attention, especially if hand and body movements are performed.
Songs can be great memory aids; The melody and movements make it easier to remember the words, and the context aids in the correct use of grammar and grammar. Songs have an uncanny way of sticking in your head, and in the case of English language learners, that’s great.
Obstacles to using songs in teaching English
Many English songs are too fast-paced and complex to use as a teaching tool. If words are pronounced so quickly that children cannot differentiate between them, it will take a lot of repetition to try to decipher the words, which leads to frustration and defeat.
Plus, an average English song has way too many words for you to learn realistically, and the lyrics will vary greatly in difficulty. If the lyrics are too difficult, you’ll run into the same problem as above – playing the song over and over while the students get restless and stressed.
Another hurdle is that many popular English songs contain content that may be inappropriate for children or may be offensive to different cultures. How do you overcome these obstacles?
Choosing and implementing songs for teaching English
Finding the right songs to use in the classroom is crucial. Words with too many words, a melody that’s too fast, or context that’s hard to understand will only confuse your students. This will completely destroy any positive benefits the songs could have and demoralize your students because they will fail instead of succeed.
What you really need are songs specifically designed for teaching English as a second language. Save playing English songs for background music while you do other activities or games, and choose something repetitive with simple words and wording for the singing time.
You can start teaching vocabulary with flashcards. This is a good method for young children (3-4 years old). Once they start to recognize the words, you can introduce basic grammar and start using the new vocabulary in the context of sentences and/or phrases.
Go play listening games to practice vocabulary. Even if your students don’t understand all the words at this point, previews like this will gradually move them from simply “listening” to active “listening” and will help when the time comes to listen intently to the song for the first time.
Use language games to help you focus children’s attention on specific words. They can run and jump on a flashcard of a name when they hear it in the song, or clap when they hear a word from a group of words pinned to the wall.
Take it slow when using songs to teach English, especially with younger, less experienced students. Play the song two or three times and then put it on the shelf until the next lesson. Break down the song line by line or sentence by phrase until you have finished at a level your students are comfortable with, then gradually build on each line until you have learned the entire passage, and then the entire song. This may take several lessons.
Create actions that go along with the words and perform them in the song. Your pupils can be a valuable resource here – children’s imaginations are rich in inspiration! With elementary students, once the song is learned it can be performed and then set aside to revisit occasionally. The lyrics can always be used later in spelling and reading and writing activities.