Using Music in Teaching English as a Foreign Language
Of the many tools and resources available to both EFL or ESL teachers and foreign language learners, music is one of the best, but most under-used. Many texts and information volumes are on the market to aid both teachers and learners in the process of applying the use of music to their classrooms and other language learning environments.
Seven Important Reasons to Use Music
Here are seven important reasons why using music in the EFL or ESL classroom is a great idea for both EFL teachers and English or other foreign language learners.
o The Learners Like It
Motivating foreign language learners is a constant concern of teachers worldwide, under a broad range of teaching and learning conditions and environments. One aspect virtually any language learner, of any age or profile, likes is music. Learners are usually quick to talk about their favorite music and musical artists like Atomic Kitten (pictured above).
o EFL Teachers Like It
The EFL or ESL teacher has a preference for music as do their learners. So whatever you, as the teacher might like, you can pass on your enthusiasm to your language learners.
o Music is Often Free
One frequent problem of English and other foreign language classes is finances. Costs and budgets are a sore point in almost every school district, language institute and teaching / learning situation. Music though, is most often freely available in many genres regardless of where you may be living or teaching.
o There is a Wide Variety of Music Available
A quick search on the internet for “free music”, “music broadcasts” or “online radio stations” will yield dozens if not scores or even hundreds of websites where music can be easily acquired.
o Music Affects the Brain Positively
Long-standing academic and intellectual studies have extensively demonstrated that music has in-depth impact and affects the brain. This effect can either be positive or negative depending on its type. With some astute guidance, you could be sure of using music with a positive effect on your English or other foreign language learners.
o Music Can Enhance Learning
If you’re looking for a way to enhance your EFL learners’ experience with language acquisition, music is one aspect that is quickly and easily implemented. Classical music like the works of Mozart, Beethoven, Vivaldi or Chopin and Easy-listening genres of music are well proven to enhance learning. Especially in the areas of language and mathematics.
o Music Motivates and Interests Learners
Ask your learners what they do in their free time and likely one of their responses will include listening to their favorite kinds of music. If you want to “perk up” a lagging classroom session fast, you can use music to do so in a great hurry.