These are activities for upper intermediate students to introduce and practise music idioms. Students match the idioms with the correct definitions and answer some questions.
One of my C2 students kindly allowed me to share their work to give you an idea of how they have dealt with the task. They have done exercise 3 and written some creative questions and answers which included the music idioms studied in class. You can find my student’s assignment in the materials section. Well done C;)
Something I have been thinking about lately is how we often concentrate only on praising or highlighting our students’ English skills, often forgetting that they are not only acquiring language abilities in our classes but other valuable lessons that could later become useful or even invaluable in their everyday lives.
One of my teenage students is quite shy and, to start with, she found it hard to express herself and simply take risks in class unless she was absolutely sure her answers were correct. Having worked with her and encouraged her for over a year and a half I have noticed how she has grown into a more confident person, asking questions, taking initiative, actively engaging, speaking up and even occasionally politely correcting me if I happened to make a mistake or forget something. I can not tell you how much of a joy it is to see a student, who has been taught to treat teachers as omnipotent and all-knowing, never to be challenged or questioned, come into her own. She has become confident enough to create a dialogue with the teacher, take me off the pedestal and enter a teaching/ learning process that will ultimately benefit us both. As teachers, we have to make sure we create a comfortable, respectful and accepting atmosphere for our students to learn, an atmosphere that feels SAFE, a place where they can disagree with us, express themselves freely without being judged and focus on the PROCESS of learning rather than rushing to the predictable outcome.
Apart from learning grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation etc. I want my students to become confident, believe in themselves, and know they have the RIGHT to ask questions and look for answers. We are all continuously learning, regardless of our age and position, and no one EVER should be made inferior, or even worse, STUPID for simply asking a question.
Time: 60 minutes
- To introduce music idioms and expressions.
- To match the expressions with their definitions.
- To practise the new expressions whilst answering questions.
Materials (Click on the worksheets below to download the PDF files):
- Put students in pairs and ask them to briefly discuss the following questions: Why do we listen to music? How much time do you spend listening to music each day? Is there a song that makes you emotional? How important is music in your life? What are the advantages of listening to music? If music were removed from the world, how would you feel?
- Hand students Do Re Mi Fa Sol Worksheet.
- Individually, students try to match the underlined expressions with their definitions and then compare their answers with their partner.
- Check the answers as a class.
- Go to exercise 2 and from memory ask students to correct the mistakes in bold. You could turn it into a mini competition and maybe even time the students 😉
- Now students answer questions 1 to 12 in pairs. Encourage them to ask their classmates additional questions to obtain more details.
- If you have had no time to discuss all questions in class, ask students to answer a couple of them in writing at home.
- Last but not least. Go to exercise 3 if you have time or/ and energy left 😉 This is a creative speaking/ writing activity inspired by a book called “Creativity Workout” by Edward de Bono. Students use the new words to answer the questions. It is a great mental challenge and it has always worked beautifully in all my classes and with all levels. I have provided you with some examples but of course feel free to come up with your own. Also if you enjoyed this activity don’t forget to check out my Random Words activities available on the blog.
Food for thought: