One of the things I like most about teaching ESL is that I pretty much have free reign as to the things I decide to teach. Anything I plan on using in my classroom is English, and so as long as my students learn some in the process, it's a good thing. Many times in the past I've used music (surprise!) in my classroom, and earlier this week I decided to go back into my iTunes library once again for a little English lesson.
One of the things I like most about P!nk is her songwriting. Her lyrics are just so well written and often meaningful, and so after an impromptu event in my classroom a couple of weeks ago, I decided to take some of the more meaningful ones and teach them as a whole new thematic unit for my class.
The event I'm referring to was a practice essay I had my students do about changes in communication and transportation over the years and how they've changed people's lives. One of my students chose to write about transportation, and in his essay he commented that one day we will have "molecular transport' as a means of getting around. Light bulb!
Beam me up, give me a minute....
Bam, it hit me! My creative juices started flowing and I immediately went into planning mode. I printed out the lyrics to P!nk's Beam Me Up and started looking at them. As it turns out, there are plenty of things to teach from that one song: vocabulary, theme, mood, imagery, rhyming, etc. I was ecstatic!
I printed out a lesson plan (sorry, the plan itself is going to be published in another forum), and got to thinking about extending the theme into other P!nk songs. Oh yeah, I've since worked in a lesson using Who Knew, and tomorrow's is The Great Escape. Don't Let Me Get Me, Just Like a Pill, Dear Mr. President, Sober, Glitter in the Air, Family Portrait, and others. They've all got great lessons in them, lessons on life and love, self-image, politics, family and so much more. So far, the kids have loved the first two songs and the whole thing has made me enthusiastic once again about teaching. Yeah baby!