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Songs in EFL Classroom

   piano

   I learned very early in life that: “Without a song, the day would never end; without a friend, a man ain’t got a friend; without a song, the road would never bend- without a song” So I keep singing a song. – Elvis Presley

I have written many times that I really enjoy using songs in the classroom. I know how effective these real songs can be. My husband never had a formal English lesson. He studied French at school but he loves music very much and he can speak English better than he can speak French. He is not good at grammar yet he can communicate. Whenever I use songs in my lessons I know that barriers become smaller so I decided to compile some lesson ideas here. If you want to share yours, please blog about them and send me the link and I’ll add it here. If you don’t blog, my blog will be very glad to have guest bloggers for ‘using songs in efl classes’

notes

Five reasons why I use songs in my classes

  1. They are authentic materials
  2. You can also teach culture and history
  3. Songs contain repetitions and repetitions enhance learning
  4. Good way to teach vocabulary and pronunciation
  5. They are fun and they can easily energize the unmotivated

 Here you can reach what I have blogged so far.

 Liven up classroom with music

When I’m sixty-four

Songs that represent me

From My delicious bookmarks:

Using Songs in the English Classroom

Songs that can be used in the classroom

Music for Teaching Social Studies

Write a Blues song

Using Music in the ESL Classroom

Songs

using songs in the esl classroom

Teaching with songs

Musical English Lessons International

LyricsTraining,

EFL Classroom.ning

TEFLTunes

Using Songs in the Classroom

Tune into English

Learn English with songs from Esolcourses

Links from the comments of this post:

http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/blogs/nik-peachey/6-activities-you-can-do-online-songs-music via Nik Peachey

http://ddeubel.edublogs.org/2010/12/31/tesol-teacher-training-presentations/ and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_nPUuPryCs via David Deubelbeiss

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Folk-DC-Digital-Childrens-Folksongs-for-Language-and-Cultural-Learning/181031155249040 via Joel Josephson

from Arjana Blazic listening quizzes  made on the ESL Video websitehttp://traveloteacher.blogspot.com/p/quizzes-for-eflesl-students.html

Learn English With Christmas Songs page: http://traveloteacher.blogspot.com/p/learn-english-with-christmas-songs.html

 Ideas from friends: (from comments)

from The Smiths ‘Ask’ and The Divine Comedy‘Come Home Billy Bird’ via @TEFL101

L.O.V.E by Nat King Cole via Anna Varna
 

 A great summary of #ELTchat about Teaching English through songs: activities, resources and benefits of using songs for teaching, on Jan 12th via Vicky Saumel

Teaching English through songs in the digital age (part 1 of 4): Background readings and resources

Teaching English through songs in the digital age (part 2 of 4): Ideas for using songs

Teaching English through songs in the digital age (part 3 of 4): Specific songs and their uses

Teaching English through songs in the digital age (part 4 of 4): Music-related web 2.0 tools

Evaluating Myself

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 adapted with flickr image

Schools have just closed and a nice summer holiday waits. Reading will be my most favourite activity in the long, lazy afternoons.

This year was very fruitful for me. So many things have happened and so many things have changed in my life. This is because of the things I’ve been doing since September. So let me tell about them:

  1. A training session with Özge: She just opened a window and the viewfrom the window  was so bright and amazing. I had already started a blog but couldn’t even find what to write there. I must thank her many times.
  2. Blogging enables me to speak my mind and share what I’ve collected as a teacher so far because of this it is my favourite.
  3. Twitter: without twitter, it was impossible to go as far as you want to. It helped me to have my Personal Learning Network.
  4. Edchat: Even with 140 characters, it is possible to discuss very serious issues. It is a great experiment to be part of it. Whenever I’m free, I really enjoy the conversation.
  5. Nings: There are loads of ideas, links, lesson plans, videos shared on them.
  6. Workshops: For the first time in my teaching life I attended conferences as a speaker and I enjoyed the experiment very much.
  7. Train the trainer was a course I attended this year and it helped me a lot to learn how to prepare and deliver workshops.
  8. Collaborations: I met wonderful people via twitter, blogging and we started projects, we had skype chats together. My students contributed to Arjana Blazic’s project then she also joined me and Alexandra and we started to grow our project and now our friends from twitter are also with us.
  9. Guest blogging: It was Shelly Terrell who first asked me to be a guest blogger on her blog then Marmaraelt and Barbara Sakamoto. These were great experiments and challenges for me.
  10.  Guest bloggers on my blog: I proudly announce that I’m a very lucky teacher who has a PLN and when I asked my friends to write a guest post for my blog, Arjana Blazic and Janet Bianchini agreed and sent their wonderful posts. I do hope to have more guest bloggers here as I learn a lot from my PLN.

I’ve been teaching for twenty-something years but I still feel I can teach for some more years and all these things I mentioned above have been acting as professional development courses.

teaching

BEING A TEACHER OR BEING A STUDENT

study and learn

 

Knowledge is power  (Sir Francis Bacon)

Most of us will agree that twitter and blogging has had a great impact on our teaching or self improvement. When I read my colleagues blog posts I find lots of similarities between me and them. The most  important is the enthusiasm we have for teaching. We all talk about our classes and how much we care for our students.
We all say we are life-long learners. I think this is the key. I love being a student. I love taking notes, working on a subject, trying to find new ways for the things I’ve taught for hundreds of times.
As we all mentioned many times before, being an EFL teacher enables us to learn more as it’s not teaching grammar only. It’s teaching the life itself. It’s making the kids ready to cope with the difficulties. It’s teaching psychology when you feel they are bullying each other and trying to find a way to show them that’s wrong. It’s making them ready for team work when they bring them together for a project. It’s teaching them geography while talking about global warming or history when reading a text on Iron Age and people’s lifestyles…
Due to all these facts we need to be students. Vicky Loras commented on Arjana Blazic’s wonderful and inspiring blog post at Teaching Village saying ‘I feel like I am in university again’. I totally agree with her. Studying at university was different and it was a precious experience because I studied the thing I loved to study. Maybe it is because of that I still want to study and learn. I want to continue my journey in learning and I’m sure my teaching will benefit from it. Teaching and learning are so interwoven that it’s difficult to separate them from each other. All these online tools help us continue our self-development and I believe ‘Learning is power’

Personal Learning Network-PLN

Wordle: A PLN

I wasn’t a technology enthusiast. I wasn’t even on FB. I just wanted to blog for my classes.

While doing it, I started my journey in the cyber world. I didn’t know anything about twitter nor PLNs. I learned twitter is a wonderful arena for sharing links, knowledge and starting collaborations. I met wonderful educators who followed me back and retweeted when I said something useful. I couldn’t even believe my eyes when I saw myselef in Shelly Terrell’s follow friday list after my first month. Everything was so new and challenging.

Then I realised how she encouraged me to contribute to the twitter. I got amazed how she continued enthusing other teachers or educators in her PLN. Whenever she retweeted a post of mine with her smile on her photo, I said to myself I had to continue. This is something like she wrote in her goal #29.Yes, We run better when we have friends with us.

 However, she was not alone. There were others who were helping me when I needed and I’m trying to do the same when somebody says something. I retweet. That’s why I love RTing.

I met teacher’s like Arjana Blazic who started a project and my students contributed to her award winning wiki. This was my first global contribution. What she was doing inspired me and I started a wiki project for my classes where I would add my students’ glogs, animotos. It was then Alexandra Francisco left a comment on my class blog and said she liked what I had done with my students and she suggested having a skype conversation with our classes. An other great idea from a colleague living far from me…..

We just opened our classroom door to other ideas. My friends, Alexandra Fransisco and Arjana Blazic joined my wiki project and my class project became something global. It was an other act to move one step further.

After our skype conversation we decided to continue collaborating and now we started an other wiki project for celebrations.We are working on it now and when I tweeted about it, two of my friends from twitter joined us. I’m sure we will grow bigger soon.

Here in the virtual world, educators help, support, motivate, enthuse each other and they like collaborating with each other. It’s different than the staffroom. We all know that staffroom atmosphere is different. Although we have to work in teams, we rarely do it. We find something to criticise each other.

However, having a PLN is a priviledge. I don’t know whether it would be like this when we all worked in the same big school. Would we continue to support each other as we are doing it here? I want to believe that we would do but anyway, at the moment I’m just enjoying the comfort of having a PLN.

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