Friday, 18 April 2014

American Authors- "Best Day of My Life"

As soon as you listen to this song, you will find it extremely familiar and that's why it has been chosen as soundtrack for many important events, as suggested by Metrolyrics  and Wikipedia. You can use "Best Day of My Life" for any class, no matter your students' level or age, because it can be easily fitted to your needs. In this case I'm putting forward a quick lesson plan on idiomatic expressions and phrasal verbs, too, but you could think of other possibilities, as well!

Level: pre-intermediate 

Grammar focus on: idioms & phrasal verbs

Activity: circle the right option


Lyrics taken from: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/americanauthors/bestdayofmylife.html

Video:



Let's talk about: positive feelings and sensations. 1) Can you remember the best day of your life? 2)How would you imagine the best day of your life? 









Thursday, 10 April 2014

Faul & Wad Ad & Pnau- "Changes"

On the basis of one of the biggest hits at the moment, "Changes", I'd like to speak about the importance of storytelling in dealing with songs. As you already know, oral interaction plays a fundamental role in ESL, but one may wonder: one can you combine ESL songs and speaking activities? This week I'm going to add an extra infographic, that briefly illustrate how you can develop storytelling in your class, by simply working on the video clip of a song. In this case, I would suggest that you show your class first the video clip and only after that you can go on with the listening activity. I'm sure your students will enjoy it, just have a look at the YouTube video (linked below) and you will agree with me!

Level: any 

Grammar focus on: just, maybe

Activity: let's focus on storytelling. First let the video play and decide which aspect you would like to analyse. Secondly, ask your students to listen to the song. Finally get them involved with their personal experiences in the Let's talk about section. 

(Cliparts taken from http://www.clipartgratis.it/)

Lyrics taken from  http://www.lyricsmania.com/changes_lyrics_faul_and_wad_ad_and_pnau.html

Video:

Let's talk about teenagers' lifestyle: 1) Have you ever taken part in a bravado with your friends? 2) Have you ever bullied against someone? How do you feel now? 3) Have you ever been bullied? How do you feel about that?




Friday, 21 March 2014

Coldplay- "Magic"

Coldplay's lyrics usually have a very special touch and their last hit, "Magic", is so enchanting! Unfortunately, teenagers are not always so fond of Coldplay and from my personal experience I've learnt that their songs are more advisable for young adults or adults in general, but who knows, maybe your students make an exception! Anyway let me know...

Level: beginner

Grammar focus on: prepositions

Activity: circle the right option


Lyrics taken from:  http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/coldplay/magic.html

Video:

(No official video available yet,  I'm posting the official audio instead)


Let's talk about:special people in your life. 1) Have you ever met someone with a magic touch? 2)What is magic in a love affair? 3) What is magic in a friendship?

Memorable phrases: 

  • to get over (something) used to say that one feels finally happy or relieved after something bad (i.e. an accident, a troublesome relation, etc.) has happened or ended. 
  • (if you can) call it (magic)....used to emphasize that something is not what it looks like.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Clean Bandit (feat. Jess Glynne)- "Rather Be"

On listening "Rather Be" by the British band Clean Bandit for the first time, we had no doubt: this song is exceptional and it gives you lots of energy, too. What's more, considering just some of its phrases, such as "switch up your batteries" and "stake out", we decided to add an extra section from this week on: it will be entitled "Memorable phrases" and it will collect some of the best idiomatic expressions and phrasal verbs that are noteworthy for you and your students, too. Equally important for us is the fact that today we're writing our post #100 and we're thankful to all those who still support and bookmark Sing Along With It! among the handy ESL resources around the web!

Level: pre-intermediate

Grammar focus on: would

Activity: circle the right option


Lyrics taken from: http://www.metrolyrics.com/rather-be-lyrics-clean-bandit.html

Video: 


Let's talk about: the video clip of the song. Watch the girl's daily routine and write down a list of the activities she does. Compare your list with your classmates' one. 

Memorable phrases: 

a) Switch up your batteries! or also Recharge your batteries! means "to get more energy";

b) to stake out means 1) to mark an area with fences; 2) to wait outside a building and keep it under surveillance; 3) to defend or to firmly believe in something. 




Sunday, 9 March 2014

Nick Howard- "Untouchable"

As many ESL learners already know, phrasal verbs and prepositions following verbs can be quite irksome to master and even proficient speakers regularly need to go over them. Today's song "Untouchable" by the British Nick Howard is perfect for this goal!

Level: pre-intermediate

Grammar focus on: phrasal verbs, prepositions

Activity: circle the right option

Untouchable

Lyrics taken from: http://www.lyricsmania.com/untouchable_lyrics_nick_howard.html

Video:


Let's talk about: my friends and I. 1) Find three adjectives to describe your friends. 2) What is special in friendship? 3)How do you feel, when you are with your friends?

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Imagine Dragons- "Demons"

Straight from Billboard Hot 100, we'd like to introduce to your class "Demons" by the emerging US rock band Imagine Dragons. This song may have a special meaning for you and your students, as it deals with the "inner demons" hidden inside everyone of us. After listening to the song and working on the worksheet, one interesting activity would be to watch the video clip together and discuss on personal fears, as suggested below. 
On the whole, the song's style is quite simple and you could plan it for beginners or pre-intermediate students.

Level: beginner/pre-intermediate

Grammar focus on: present simple

Activity: fill-in the gaps (items provided)

Demons

Lyrics taken from: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/imaginedragons/demons.html

Video:



Let's talk about: personal fears. 1) After listening to the song, give your personal definition of "inner demons". Then check out on Macmillan Dictionary2) Watch the video clip and ask your students: what are the inner demons of the five fans who are enjoying the concert? 3)Work in pairs and list 3 things you are afraid of (please don't focus on personal tragedies, especially if you know that some of your students don't mean to talk about!). The purpose of this activity is to reuse some of the expressions learnt during the listening and possibly share personal experiences, in order to improve their self-esteem and mutual understanding, too.


Wednesday, 26 February 2014

U2- "Invisible"

We're back again with the second single taken from U2's upcoming album, i.e."Invisible", where a young Bono tells about his decision to leave home and move to London, to start a career with his band. This song is also popular, because it supports the RED campaign along with Bank of America against AIDS (if you want to read more, please go to: http://www.red.org/en/bankofamerica).
You can easily go in for "Invisible" with your class, if you're planning a lesson on the use of personal/possessive adjectives and pronouns.

Level: pre-intermediate

Grammar focus on: personal/possessive adjectives and pronouns

Activity: circle the right option

Invisible

Lyrics taken from: http://www.lyricsfreak.com/u/u2/invisible_21076297.html


Video: 


Let's talk about: loneliness and hope.  Have you ever felt like invisible among the others?