The ubiquitous nature and diffusion of songs sung in English has meant that a great number of EFL and ESP students are listening to English and acquiring some notions about the language almost subconsciously. Such songs have also been incorporated into English as an L2 practice for, probably, almost as long as English has been taught as a foreign language. However, sometimes they are used as filler exercises or only as an exercise to keep the students happy. Slowly, songs have been gaining more acceptance as a valid didactic tool to be used in various moments of the general English L2 lesson and for various functions (Tegg 2018. Pop songs in the classroom: Time-filler or teaching tool? EFL Journal 72(3). 274–284). This article reports on a project to use songs in English for Specific purposes lessons at an Italian university with students of two Master degree courses (Social Work and Social Policy; Sociology and Social Research). During the English modules, songs from various artists were specifically chosen and language-learning exercises devised around them to be used in almost every lesson for different learning objectives: these included introducing a new subject, presenting and revising grammar, learning individual words or short phrases including idiomatic expressions, as lead-ins to discussions. At the end of the course, the students completed a questionnaire aimed at eliciting their opinions about the use of songs in ESP lessons. The results indicate that the use of popular songs is an effective tool in an ESP lesson and that their inclusion can help motivate students as well as help them learn.

Harmonious learning: songs in English for ESP

Ian Michael Robinson
2024-01-01

Abstract

The ubiquitous nature and diffusion of songs sung in English has meant that a great number of EFL and ESP students are listening to English and acquiring some notions about the language almost subconsciously. Such songs have also been incorporated into English as an L2 practice for, probably, almost as long as English has been taught as a foreign language. However, sometimes they are used as filler exercises or only as an exercise to keep the students happy. Slowly, songs have been gaining more acceptance as a valid didactic tool to be used in various moments of the general English L2 lesson and for various functions (Tegg 2018. Pop songs in the classroom: Time-filler or teaching tool? EFL Journal 72(3). 274–284). This article reports on a project to use songs in English for Specific purposes lessons at an Italian university with students of two Master degree courses (Social Work and Social Policy; Sociology and Social Research). During the English modules, songs from various artists were specifically chosen and language-learning exercises devised around them to be used in almost every lesson for different learning objectives: these included introducing a new subject, presenting and revising grammar, learning individual words or short phrases including idiomatic expressions, as lead-ins to discussions. At the end of the course, the students completed a questionnaire aimed at eliciting their opinions about the use of songs in ESP lessons. The results indicate that the use of popular songs is an effective tool in an ESP lesson and that their inclusion can help motivate students as well as help them learn.
2024
classroom practice, ESP, motivation, songs, university
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/366038
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