During the Annual Enrichment Seminar hosted by the Fulbright Program, two English Teaching Assistants (Ian + Ayumi) in Nepal presented on an innovative method to teaching spoken English using song. This approach used music to motivate students to relax and improve their communicative, listening, and writing competence. Contrary to what I have done before with just playing songs and having the students just listen, this method involved competition—something the kids love. To make it even more interesting, the two ETA’s in Nepal added an idol twist (i.e. Ian Sir Idol). To begin this activity, students had to split in groups of four or five and create their own band (example: The Jokers Pop Band). Unlike the ETA’s in Nepal, I performed this activity in two parts—audition and the actual competition. For the auditions, I provided the song, Here Comes the Sun by the Beetles. We went over the song lyrics, highlighted vocabulary, and deciphered the meaning of the song together. After completing the dictation and comprehension I had the students create their song by replacing the lyrics of ‘Here Comes the Sun’ by the Beatles. Amazingly enough, the whole class was excited for this activity. To make the feel of idol more genuine, I assigned four students to be the judges. The student judges had their own judging score sheets and did not participate in the performances. To be fair, every band made it past the auditions but their score determined their rank in the competition at the moment. For the competition portion, each of the bands had to creatively write their own songs. If they included any vocabulary from previous lessons, they would get extra credit.
|Judges, Nitin (l) and Samiran (r), while judging a bands’ performance|
|Following Sandy Ma’am Idol, the final scores were posted up in VI-D’s classroom.|
|Sandy Ma’am poses with the winners of Sandy Ma’am Idol—Mathematical Force.|
|Sandy Ma’am stands with two of the judges and the 2nd place winners of Sandy Ma’am Idol—Best Ever Band.|