Friday, February 20, 2015

Verbs Followed By Infinitives

Age: Adults
Focus: Verbs followed by infinitives

"HARD TO SAY I'M SORRY" is an old ballad by Chicago. Students must have learned and practice verbs followed by infinitives , gerunds, and base forms, although the song has only infinitives and base forms. The activity presented here is simple and short. First, students guess the name of the band. Then, they listen to the song, read the lyrics and find one example of each of the following:

1) Adjective + Object + Infinitive
2) Verb + Infinitive
3) Verb + Object + Infinitive
4) Verb + Object + Base Form

After that, they write sentences about themselves using the structures found in the song and share them with a peer. 

Activity - Downloadable

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Third Person

The song "EVERY BREATH YOU TAKE" by the Police is a good song to practice the third person of verbs in the present. By the way, you can use other songs as well. 

Super simple task: First students guess who the band is based on clues provided by the teacher. Then, they listen to the song and underline the verbs. Finally they change the verbs into the third person and sing along.

Activity - Downloadable

"GREEN" Project

Age: Teens
Focus: Future Forms

It's no secret to anyone that Michael Jackson was very vocal about environmental issues. "EARTH SONG" is an example of how concerned he was about raising people's awareness on preserving and protecting the planet. This song is a great opportunity for students to:

1) Engage into a GREEN project, therefore collaborate in groups;   
2) Use future forms (WILL, GOING TO, Present Continuous);
3) Become aware of their role in the planet and what they can do to make it a better place.   

First, students are introduced to some vocabulary presented in the song. Then, they listen to the song and identify the problems we have in the planet and some questioning made by the author.  After that, students engage into a group discussion based on questions provided by the teacher. In the end, the teacher assigns a group project,  which could be a power point presentation, a poster, an illustration, a letter to the authorities, etc…  in other words, students are free to choose the means to express their concern about the planet.

Activity - Downloadable

The place where I live

The song "DOWNTOWN" is an old song performed by Frank Sinatra, therefore appropriate for adults. The song sounds super old, yet funny and unusual. Besides, it's about the excitements of being downtown, which is an opportunity for students to share how they feel about the place where they live. After a brief discussion, students listen to the song and identify elements that show why the author enjoys downtown so much. In the end, students are arranged in two groups and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of living downtown. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Don't you remember?

Age: Adults
Focus: Would X Used To

"DON'T YOU REMEMBER" is performed by Dean Martin, therefore a great song to play in a class of adults. Mine usually love those old songs. The activity consists in allowing students to briefly say weather they have a good memory or not. Then, they listen to the song and say whether the author has a good memory or not. Finally, students write about a memory they have using USED TO and WOULD. 

When is lying better than telling the truth?

Age: Older Teens & Adults
Focus: Reflection & Discussion

The song "DO YOU REMEMBER" by Phil Collins is a romantic song but it's about a relationship that ended. The focus is engage students into a group discussion. Simple task, actually: First, students  choose from a number of options provided and explain their choices.  Then, they listen to the song/ read the lyrics and guess why the author ended his relationship (After listening to the song, students will realize that lying was not the only reason). Finally, they reflect and have a group discussion about lying. 

Dancing Queen

Age: Teens & Adults
Focus: Relative Clauses

The purpose of the activity below is to practice relative clauses, although there aren't any in the lyrics. Simple task: First, students play a guessing game. Then, they listen to the song and find "hidden" relative clauses. Finally, they google the band and write down three pieces of information about them using relative clauses as well. 

Got dumped?

Age: Adults
Focus: Simple Past

The song "CRYING" is a song about a broken heart, therefore, not a teenager's cup of tea. The goal here is to practice and memorize the past form of the verbs in the song. First, students do a word search activity. Then, they read the lyrics and change the verbs into the past, in order to once again visualize and memorize the past form. Next, they engage into a written task (either fill in a table with the past form of the verbs, once again an opportunity to memorize them, or write a letter in response to the author of the song).

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Lessons we learn

Age: Adults
Focus: Verb Tenses

"CRASH BOOM BANG" by Roxette is a song about a lesson the author has learned. After having a brief discussion in pairs, students listen to the song and identify the verb tenses presented. In the end, students guess what lesson the author has learned.

Activity - Downloadable

Past Modals

Age: Adults
Focus: Past Modals

The song "I COULD HAVE DANCED ALL NIGHT" by Frank Sinatra offers students a good opportunity to practice past modals. First, students play a guessing game to guess who the author of the song is and then they listen to the song as the read the lyrics. After that, students work on a short written  task, in which they individually write sentences about themselves and finally share them with a peer.

Activity - Downloadable

What I wanna do is...

Age: Adults
Focus: WILL for intentions

The activity below has been designed for the song "COME AWAY WITH ME" by Nora Jones. Simple and short task. First, students list the things they are planning to do today or this week. After sharing what they will do, they listen to the song and afterwards, engage into a brief discussion on the author's intentions.

Activity - Downloadable

This town is great

Age: Teens & Adults
Focus: Writing

"CHICAGO", originally performed by Frank Sinatra, is about the city and its qualities. It's a great opportunity for students to reflect on the qualities of their own city and what makes it a special place. Simple task: First, students engage into a brief discussion about the city and after that, they listen to the song and identify the qualities the author thinks the city has. In the end, students write about the qualities of a city they like.

 Activity - Downloadable