The Future of Education

Edition 13

Accepted Abstracts

English Language Learning through Music and Song Lyrics—The Performance of a Lifetime

Diane Boothe, Boise State University (United States)

Jeff West, Private Musician (United States)



                The number of English language speakers and demand for English language Learning (ELL) is growing at an exponential rate. Ongoing learning that is student centered and engaging promotes success and gives students the competitive edge as they develop and retain ELL skills and content. Music lyrics and song not only provide tools to strengthen and reinforce vocabulary, comprehension, and writing, but increase learning and grammatical variations with auditory skills and rhythmic patterns that stimulate brain activity and encourage imagination.

                Learning with music and song is supported by integrating complex interactive roles creating a positive environment with high levels of student achievement. Action research supports a connection between language and song, as well as actively engaging learners in stimulating activities and discovery. This presentation/publication outlines strategies for using songs, song parody and lyrics to introduce and strengthen ELL in the context of musical patterns, melodies, rhymes and creative vocabulary. Once students engage in ELL through music lyrics, the next step is to customize learning by composing their own lyrics and, for the capable and creative, set their lyrics to original self-composed melodies.

                The innovative aspects and insights of this strategy for ELL will be presented in a flexible, collaborative step-by-step method that supports this pedagogy delivery system. Cultural enrichment as well as an increased command of the English language is an asset accompanying seamless language learning in this transformational model that compliments traditional English acquisition methods. Information communications technology (ICT) can be incorporated to enhance and strengthen learning while sparking inspiration and creativity.

                Highlighting this presentation/publication are original song lyrics and melodies that will be demonstrated featuring singer, musician and song writer, Jeff West.

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