13Song Journal

by Danny K. Howard, EAP Associate Director

It’s no surprise…EVERYONE loves to listen to music! The great thing about a song is that it can be very helpful in teaching you English in a fun & easy way.

Songs help you to learn English in many ways because they:

  1. 1 Give you practice with pronunciation
  2. 2 Help teach you about the “rhythm” and rhyme of English
  3. 3 Introduce new vocabulary to listeners
  4. 4 Teach you many themes on interesting topics
  5. 5 Are fun and easy for anyone to do

I remember a student who entered NIC, and her English was excellent! She told me that she learned a lot by just listening to music, so I thought this would be great to show you, too! Below is how you can do a “Song Journal.”

Materials needed:

  • ⇒ Music
  • ⇒ Access to the Internet (not necessary though)
  • ⇒ A journal

Listen to the song & answer the following questions as you listen:

  1. Write one sentence about the theme or message of the song.
  2. Write at least 3 adjectives that show how you feel when you hear the song.
  3. Write 3-5 new vocabulary words that you hear in the song. Write the sentence or phrase that you hear with the word and a short definition of the word. You can use the lyrics (words to the song) for this if you want to.
  4. Rewrite a new title for the song based on how you feel when you hear it (your choice!).
  5. Write out your feelings about this song in a short paragraph.
  6. If you have the lyrics, read the words and listen again as you read them. Lyrics are always very easy to find. Just go to yahoo and type in “lyrics” & then the name of the song in the search blank.

Here’s a sample of what your page should look like:

Song Title:
“Let it Be” by the Beatles
Things will get better in life in time.
3 adjectives that I feel when I hear the song:  
Hopeful, Cautious, Wise
“speaking words of wisdom” = being wise
“though they may be parted” = to be separated from someone
“whisper words of wisdom” = to speak softly
New title:
“Life Goes On”
When I listen to this song, I feel good. I feel that even though bad things happen in life, there is still hope if we “let it be”. I think that John Lennon wants us to feel that life has a purpose or design. We cannot always control this design. But if we wait patiently, good things will happen to people who have good hearts!