You are on page 1of 139

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

TOPIC 1

OVERVIEW

1.0 SYNOPSIS Topic 1 will look at literature in the Malaysian primary ESL classroom, the rationale on the use of songs and poetry with young learners in the primary classroom. 1.1 LEARNING OUTCOMES By the end of Topic 1, you will be able to: distinguish the difference between poetry and songs identify the roles and purposes of using songs and poetry in the primary ESL classroom 1.2 FRAMEWORK OF TOPICS Overview

Literature in the Malaysian Primary ESL classroom

Purposes of using songs and poetry in the Malaysian primary school

Intra and inter personal development

Linguistic development

Aesthetic development

Cultural Considerations

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

CONTENT SESSION ONE (6 HOURS) 1.2.1 OVERVIEW Lets try and do some exercises. Can you try and answer these questions.

1. What is literature? 2. Why do we read it?

So how about it? Can you answer the questions. Take a look at the responses given below. Is it the same as the answers given by you. 1. Literature is a term that is used to describe the collection of written or spoken materials through different periods and cultures. 2. We read it because we want to know about knowledge of the world, of other cultures, for entertainment purposes and to get an insight of the human beings and the society because works of literature convey emotions and experiences of human beings. (Oak, 2009)

1.2.1.1

Literature in the Malaysian primary ESL classroom. Lets read

Primary school children were already exposed to literary texts even before the official launch of the Childrens Contemporary Literature component for Years 4 till 6. They were already familiar with nursery rhymes, stories and so on. The then

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Curriculum Development Centre Director Ali Ab Ghani said that the Primary Literature Project was introduced in the school curriculum to strengthen pupils proficiency in English (The Star, May 25, 2008). The objectives for introducing the Childrens Contemporary Literature are as follows: to instil and inculcate the reading habit among pupils. to enrich pupils vocabulary and language content. to enhance pupils thinking skills. to promote cultural understanding in the Malaysian context to improve English language proficiency of pupils. To provide lively, enjoyable and high-interest readings. (Pusat Perkembangan Kurikulum, 2006) Apart from stories, the students were also introduced to songs and poetry. Put your thinking cap on WHY??? Song and Poetry

WHEN?? So how did you do? Did you manage to answer all? Lets check. Read the reasons listed below. Why do we use songs and poetry with young learners in the primary ESL classroom?

Music is highly memorable and motivating. 3

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Songs,rhymes and chants are ideal tools to be used in the language classroom. To introduce, reinforce and recycle structures and vocabulary. To develop all skills in an integrated way. To help improve all aspects of pronunciation:stress,rhythm and intonation of the target language. To present new language in a new rich and imaginative context. To encourage physical involvement. To contribute to the learning of the cultural component of the language. To contribute to the development of a positive attitude towards the language learning. To help to develop a positive relation between teachers and students They promote the practice of pronunciation, intonation and stress. They are a nice way to introduce, practice, and review vocabulary. They are useful to practice writing. They enrich the knowledge of cultural features. They are a way of developing of language skills (http://www.slideshare.net/ddeubel/using-songs-in-the-efl-classroom )

When do we use songs and poetry with young learners in the primary ESL classroom? For eg, they can be used : as a warm up as a transition to introduce new language structures to practice or revise language to integrate with storytelling

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

1.2.1.2

Songs and poetry in the Malaysian primary school curriculum

Lets read

Songs and poetry are part of our daily life. Almost everyone enjoys songs and poetry. Language teachers use songs and poetry to open or close their lessons, to illustrate themes and topics. They also use songs and poetry to add variety or a change of pace, present new vocabulary or recycle known language in their classrooms. But how do songs or poetry actually benefit or give purpose to our students?

Lets think about this again. Can you list down the purposes of using songs and poetry in the Malaysian primary school?

1.2.2 Purposes of using songs and poetry in the Malaysian primary school

Check your answers. Are they the same as the answers that youve given? Purposes: for personal development - intra and inter personal development for linguistic development 5

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

for aesthetic development Cultural considerations

Before we go any further. Lets try and answer some more questions. Can you try and answer these questions. How do songs and poetry help: to develop the students intra and inter personal ? to develop potential? students linguistic/language learning

to develop students aesthetic values? to develop students cultural considerations?

Take a look at the explanation below. It will help to clarify some things for you. If you need further clarification, discuss with your lecturer. 1.2.2.1 Intra and inter personal development Intrapersonal development

Intrapersonal development is the growth within yourself that is having an understanding of yourself, of knowing who you are and what you can do. In other words, all these takes place within ourself. Students intra personal development can be enhanced by using songs and poetry that would inspire the students to develop and believe in their abilities. Some examples of inspirational poetry and songs are listed below. Poetry 1. It couldnt Be Done Edgar A Guest. 2. If - Rudyard Kipling 6 Songs 1. Hero -Mariah Carey 2. Walk a Mile in my shoes Joe South

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

3. The Climb Miley Cyrus 3. Pretty Good - Charles Osgood 4. On Being a Champion - Matthew Stepanek 4. This is Me - Demi Lovato

Go to this website for more wonderful inspirational poetry. http://www.teensselfhelp.com/GreatPoems.html

Find 3 songs and poetry that could help to enhance students intrapersonal development

Interpersonal development Interpersonal development is whereby students must learn to work with others by building a positive social relationship and learning how to work as a team. It is also the development of students ability to understand other people. Interpersonal development can be inculcate in the students with the use of songs and poetry. For example, the song entitled The family song or The friendship song or the poetry, entitled Ations - by Shel Silverstein. Here the teacher can get the students to act out or role play as they sing the song. When the students are working in a group , they learn how to communicate, respect as well as to help each other. They also learn how to socialise and negotiate with their friends.

Find 2 songs and poetry that could help to enhance students interpersonal skills development. Suggest some activities that could be conducted to develop students interpersonal skills. Discuss the activities with your lecturers.

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

1.2.2.2

Language Learning Potentials

Songs and poetry: helps children improve their listening and sound discrimination skills will aid not only in learning to read but also becoming better students and better people in the future as an activity to enrich your students' English vocabulary, to improve their grammar and accents. This is because songs and poetry have lots of vocabulary therefore the students can enhance their vocabulary by learning new words in a fun way. They also learn how to pronounce words with the appropriate stress and intonation. as a classroom activity use for learning structures. This is because the structures are sometimes repetitive. This is good as the students will be practising the particular structure again and again. This is useful as they provide reinforcement of the linguistic functions. promote listening and speaking exercises practices through different tasks. provides a fun and interesting way to learn the language structure and grammar. provides a nice way to introduce, practice, and review vocabulary. are useful to practice writing and reading skills.

1. Can you think of 2 other reasons on how songs and poetry can help to develop students language learning potentials. 2. Think also of an activity that you can do with your students to promote language learning. 8 Discuss with your lecturer.

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

1.2.2.3

Developing students aesthetic values Some example of activities that can help students towards developing their aesthetic skills : pottery, crafts, embroidery, painting, origami, soft-toys & puppet making so on

Aesthetics (also spelled esthetics) - means the study of the emotions and the mind in relation to their sense of beauty in literature and other fine arts, but separately from moral, social, political, practical, or economic considerations. This area of study is concerned with the appreciation and criticism of what is considered beautiful or ugly. It is sometimes referred to as art for arts sake.

1. Can you think of 2 activities on how songs and poetry can help to develop students aesthetic values. Discuss with your lecturer.

1.2.2.4

Developing students cultural considerations 1.Why do you think there is a need to develop students cultural considerations? 2. How do songs and poetry help to develop students cultural considerations? Discuss with your lecturer. 9

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

TOPIC 2

SONGS AND POETRY FOR YOUNG LEARNERS

2.0 SYNOPSIS Topic 2 will look at the different genres/types of songs and poetry and their values in the primary ESL classroom. 2.1 LEARNING OUTCOMES By the end of Topic 2, you will be able to: identify the different genres/types of songs and poetry and their characteristics. 2.2 FRAMEWORK OF TOPICS Songs and Poetry for Young Learners

Genres/Types of Poetry

Genres/Types of Songs

Hailku

Limericks

Nursery Rhyme Dramatic

Folk songs

Lullabies

Epic

Narrative

Ballads Pop R&B

Blues Jazz

10

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Something to think about. In every society, songs and poems play an important role. They show many aspects and important elements of culture in each society. For eg: the relationship to the past and the ancestors as well as the faith, the fun, the anxieties of its people, the hopes and the view of the future Through songs and poetry childrens curiosity about everything new will be satisfied. They are able to learn or get to know parts of a foreign culture. Being familiar with songs and rhymes in a foreign language, pupils feel closer to the foreign culture and its language. So they see them as enrichment for their own life (http://www.grin.com/en/ebook/106150/songs-and-rhymes-in-teaching-english-at-primaryschools) If the pupils hear the same melodies or similar rhymes they are astonished at the parallels between their own culture and the foreign one so, the foreign cultures arent alarming and frightening but interesting and worth being discovered (http://www.grin.com/en/e-book/106150/songs-and-rhymes-inteaching-english-at-primary-schools

Go to this website for extra reading http://www.freepatentsonline.com/article/Multicultural-education http://www.grin.com/en/e-book/106150/songs-and-rhymes-in-teachingenglish-at-primary-schools

Look at the above framework. Name 3 more types of poetry and songs. Have you done that ? nnnnnEducation/180030028.htmlEducation/180030028.html Go to this website : 1. http://www.poemofquotes.com/articles/poetry_forms.php 2. http://www.poeticterminology.net/ 3. http://www.buzzle.com/articles/types-of-songs.html 11 4. http://musicgenreslist.com/ Did you manage to name them correctly?

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Lets think for a while. Why do you think teachers like to use songs and poetry in their teaching? Can you give some reasons for using songs and poetry in your teaching? Have a short discussion with your colleagues in school. Are the reasons they give the same as yours?

2.2.1 Genres of Poetry General Introduction to Poetry Poetry. What exactly is poetry? The term poetry comes from an ancient Greek word, which means I create. In other words poetry is an art form in which language is used for its aesthetic qualities as well as for its imaginary and semantic content (http://www.poetry.org/whatis.htm). Poetry is a creative use of words which, like all art, is intended to stir an emotion in the audience. Poetry generally has some structure that separates it from prose (http://www.teachers.sheboygan.k12.wi.us/elee/documents/PoetryPack et_001.pdf}

Recap

Haiku

Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry, usually about nature. The first line has five syllabus, the second line has seven syllabus, and the third line has five. Look at the example below: 12 Ocean waves roll in, (5) Foam against the sandy shore, (7) Then slide back to sea (5)

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Limericks

Limerick is a five line poem with a rhyme scheme of a-a-b-b-a. Limerick always has a humorous tone. Look at the example below: A Clumsy Young Fellow Named Tim There once was a fellow named Tim (a) whose dad never taught him to swim. (a) He fell off a dock (b)

Nursery Rhyme

A nursery rhyme is a short rhyming story, often set to music and usually designed for young children. Typically, a nursery rhyme has simple vocabulary and a catchy rhyme. Children can quickly learn to sing along with a nursery rhyme, and nursery rhymes are often used to help young children build their vocabulary. Look at the example below:
Baa, baa, black sheep, Have you any wool? Yes sir, yes sir, Three bags full. One for my master, One for my dame, And one for the little boy Who lives down the lane. Baa, baa, black sheep, Have you any wool? Yes sir, yes sir, Three bags full. One for my master, One for my dame, And one for the little boy Who lives down the lane.

and sunk like a rock. (b) And that was the end of him. (a)

13

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Epic

Epic Poems are long, serious poems that tells the story of a heroic figure or the actions of gods and goddess. Some of the most famous epic poems are the Iliad and the Odyssey by Homer and the epic poem of The Song of Hiawatha by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807 - 1882). Go to this website to have a look at the epic poem. lliad : http://www.poemhunter.com/homer/ Odyssey: http://www.onlineliterature.com/homer/odyssey/1/ The song of Hiawatha : http://www.hwlongfellow.org/poems_poem.php?pid=62

Narrative

Narrative Poems are poems that tell stories. There is a beginning, which introduces the background to the story, a middle, which tells the action of the event, and an end, which concludes and summarizes the story. It is a poem that tells a series of events using poetic devices such as rhythm, rhyme, compact language, and attention to sound. In other words, a narrative poem tells a story, but it does it with poetic flair! Many of the same elements that are found in a short story are also found in a narrative poem. Here are some elements of narrative poetry that are important: A narrative poem in which one or more characters speak. The dramatic poem consists of the thoughts or o character spoken statements (or both) of one or more characters other than the poet himself in a particular life situation. It o setting is dramatic rather than narrative since the character is not "written about" by the poet; rather, the poem o conflict consists of the character's own thoughts or spoken statements. He may be thinking (or talking) to himself; a o plot poem recording his thoughts or speech to himself is called a soliloquy. Or a character may be speaking to Go to this website to have a look at a narrative poem: one or more other characters in a given situation; a www.pflugervilleisd.net/curriculum/.../Narrative_ Poetry_ poem recording his speech is called a dramatic Lesson.pdf monologue.(http://www.studyguide.org/lit_terms.htm) Go to this website to have a look at a dramatic poem Tamburlaine The Great by Christopher Marlowe for parts 1,2 and 3. 14 http://www.fullbooks.com/Tamburlaine-the-Great-Part1.html

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Dramatic

Now that you know the different genres/types of poetry. Why not try and create one or two poems on your own. Try creating one limerick and one haiku. Remember the number of syllabus and the rhyme scheme. Show your work to your lecturer.

2.2.2 Genres of Songs General Introduction to Song What is a song? Most people will say its a combination of melody and lyric. The more enlightened will add harmony and rhythm, or a beat. Adding to this, it has structure, usually repeats of verses and choruses. According to the Meriam Webster dictionary a song is a short musical composition of words and music Folk song Folk music reflects the lives of common people. Through this music people give voice to their feelings. They cry about their sorrows and shout about their 15

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

happiness. They express their beliefs and remember their ancestors. They tell about the things they have seen and heard and felt in their lives. Through folk music people preserve their history. Not the history of textbooks, but the history of common people. http://eslfolk.com/articles-about-folk-music/ Some example of Malaysian folk songs: Jambatan Tamparuli, Rasa Sayang Eh Other example of folk songs : Clap your hands, The ants go marching, Down in the valley. Blues

It was created by African Americans who used to be slaves in the early part of the 1900's. Black people in America used to live and work on large farms called plantations. Their working conditions were not very good, and while they worked, they would sometimes sing to each other in the fields. Later, these songs became the first Blues music. This kind of music is very emotional. Slaves did not have happy lives, and even after slavery became illegal, life for black people in the south was still extremely difficult. Therefore, the words to these songs were often very sad. It became possible to say, I've got the blues or I'm blue when you were sad because of the lyrics of these songs. http://eslfolk.com/articlesabout-folk-music/ Some examples of famous blues songs/music : Memphis Blues by W.C. Handy, Crazy Blues by Mamie Smith, The Thrill is Gone by B.B.King and Pride and Joy by Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Ballad

16

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

In the later 19th century it took on the meaning of a slow form of popular love song and the term is now often used as synonymous with any love song, particularly the pop or rock power ballad. http://www.musicstack.com/genre/jazz Some example of ballads: How can I live without you by Micheal Bolton, I Swear by All-4-One, Speak Sofly love by Andy Williams, Fifteen by Taylor Swift.

Lullaby A lullaby is a soothing song, usually sung to young children before they go to sleep, with the intention of speeding that process. As a result they are often simple and repetitive. Lullabies can be found in every culture and since the ancient period. Lullabies share common musical characteristics i.e. they are gentle, often use rocking rhythms, are melodically simple and often repeat melodic patterns. http://www.oxfam.org.uk/education/resources/global_music_lesson_plans/5_7/fil es/lesson4_lullabies_around_the_world.pdf Some example of lullabies: Hush Little Baby, Go to Sleep you little baby and Twinkle twinkle Little Star,

Jazz

17

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Jazz is defined as a style of music, native to America, characterized by a strong but flexible rhythmic understructure with solo and ensemble improvisations on basic tunes and chord patterns and, more recently, a highly sophisticated harmonic idiom. The Free Dictionary Some examples of Jazz: Somewhere over the rainbow, I got rhythm, Soul Bossa Nova, and Strange Fruit by Billie Holiday

R&B

Rhythm and blues, often abbreviated to R&B and RnB, is a genre of popular African-American music that originated in the 1940s. The term was originally used by record companies to describe recordings marketed predominantly to urban African Americans, at a time when "urbane, rocking, jazz based music with a heavy, insistent beat" was becoming more popular. The term "R&B" became used to refer to music styles that developed from and incorporated electric blues, as well as gospel and soul music

Some example of R&B songs: Diamond by Rihanna, Girl on Fire by Alicia Keys, Thinkin Bout You by Frank Ocean and Young Girls by Bruno Mars.

POP

18

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

There is no particular style of music that can be clearly identified as pop. This is because pop music is always changing. It can be identified as the most popular mainstream music of the time. The most consistent component of pop music has been the concept of the pop song. Most pop songs range in length from approximately 2 minutes to 5 minutes, and they frequently include a versechorus-verse-bridge-chorus structure or some close variant. Longer compositions are rare in pop music. Pop music has been and continues to be a melting pot of styles. Some example of pop songs: One More Night by Maroon 5, We are never Ever Getting Back Together by Taylor Swift, Dont Wake Me up by Chris Brown.

References

19

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

1. Cox, C. (2008). Teaching Language Arts: A Student-centered Classroom, (6thed). USA: Allyn & Bacon. 2. Fogiel, M. (2000). Aesthetics Retrieved 13 Sep, 2012 from http://www.enotes.com/literary-terms/ 3. Introduction to poetry. Retrieved 1 Nov. 2012 from.. http://www.teachers.sheboygan.k12.wi.us/elee/documents/PoetryPacket_001.pdf 4. Kursus PelaksanaanProgram Bacaan Sastera Kontemporari Kanakkanak Bahasa Inggeris Tahun 6, (2006) Pusat Perkembangan Kurikulum, Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia 5. Null, K,C. (2002). How to write a poem. Teacher Created Materials, Inc: USA 6. Oak, M. (2009). The importance of literature. Retrieved 11 Sept 2012 from http://www.buzzle.com/articles/importance - of -literature.html 7. Retrieved 11 Sept 2012 from http://www.slideshare.net/ddeubel/using-songsinthe-efl-classroom 8. Retrieved 12 September 2012 from http://faculty.buffalostate.edu/smithrd/UAE%20Communication/Unit4.pdf 9. Retrieved 12 September 2012 from http://www.poetry.org/whatis.htm 10. Retrieved 12 September 2012 from http://eslfolk.com/articles-about-folk-music/ 11. Simrit Kaur, Exposed to Literature. (2008, May 25). The Star. 12. Songs and Rhymes in Teaching English at Primary Schools. Retrieved 1 Nov 2012. http://www.grin.com/en/e-book/106150/songs-and-rhymes-inteaching-english-at-primary-schools 13. What is poetry. Retrieved 1 Nov. 2012 from http://www.poetry.org/whatis.htm

TOPIC 3

PEDAGOGICAL PRINCIPLES OF TEACHING SONGS AND POETRY TO YOUNG LEARNERS

20

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

3.0 SYNOPSIS This topic aims to look at the pedagogical principles underlying the teaching of songs and poetry to young learners. It also aims to create an understanding of the pedagogial principles linked to the KSSR syllabus. Finally the three broad themes (World of self, family and friends; World of Knowledge and World of Stories) embeded in the teaching of songs and poetry are discussed. 3.1 LEARNING OUTCOMES 1. Select and evaluate songs and poetry for use in the primary ESL classroom based on pedagogical principles (3.3, 3.6, 6.3, 6.6) 2. To examine the link between poetry and songs with Malaysian primary school syllabus (KSSR/KBSR) 3.2 FRAMEWORK OF TOPIC

CONTENT SESSION TWO (6 hours) 3.2.1 Introduction 21

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

From previous chapters you would have learnt the various types of songs and poetry available for young learners in the primary classrooms. However, this knowledge alone is not enough for you to decide which poems or songs are suitable for your students. One important aspect that needs consideration is the pedagogical principles underpinning the the teaching of songs and poetry for young learners. This chapter will guide you to learn more about these pedagogical principles; namely underlying pedagogical principles of the primary school curriculum and the principles related to teaching songs and poetry for young learners. These two aspects are deemed crucial in the understanding of the overall curriculum and its link to the teaching of songs and poetry in the primary schools. You will be able to see the link as you read and answer the questions found in this chapter. This chapter also highlights the three broad themes identified in the curriculum, namely; World of self, family and friends; World of stories and World of knowledge. By understanding each of these element you will be able to make connections on how to teach songs and poetry and the ways of selecting and adapting resouces to suit the needs of young learners.

Activity 1 Identify the meaning of these words from the dictionary. i. ii. pedagogy: ________________________________________________ principles: ________________________________________________

You should be aware that pedagogy refers to the art of teaching. This includes instructions and activities related to knowledge and skills. On the other hand, principles are ideas, truths or beliefs used as a base for reasoning or action. 22

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Pedagogical principles are good practices of professionals in educational contexts. They are referred to as maxims for action, which, in a defined scope, claim permanent validity for every concrete situation, be it in pedagogical practice or in educational science as one type of societal practice (Handbook on Educational Science, 2004, p.122). power. Edelenbos et al. (2006) claim pedagogical principles synthesize a rich set of practical, instructional experiences and can be used to deal with new practical problems. They also highlight the fact that it should be aligned with the personality of a learner and cognition. From there, one derives and expands didactical concepts, giving teachers a manageable number of points of orientation. The KSSR is a new curriculum implemented in the Year 2011 for Year 1 students in the primary schools. There are several pedagogical principles highlighted in the teaching of English. Look through the English primary school syllabus and identify each one of them. 3.2.2 Pedagogical Principles of the Curriculum There are several pedagogical principles that govern the learning process in the teaching of Language Arts in the primary schools. They are; back to basics learning as fun, meaningful and purposeful teaching is learner-centered integration of salient new technologies character-building assessment for learning 23 Castillow (2004) believes that pedagogical principles has these characteristics; pure, pristine, and packed with pedagogical

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Now let us look at each principle closely.

3.2.2.1 Back to Basics This principle emphasizes the basic requirements needed for young learners at the beginning of the schooling years. It refers to a strong foundation of competencies in basic literacy skills. Among the areas highlighted are phonics, penmanship and basic listening and speaking skills.

Thinking question

Why listening and speaking skills are highly emphasized under the first pedagogical principle? Activity 2 a. Why do you think penmanship is one of the important factors emphasized for young learners? Answer: _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________

b. What do you understand with the term phonics? _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ 24

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

_____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________

3.2.2.2 Learning as fun, meaningful and purposeful

The activities catered under KSSR emphasizes full commitment from the students in engaging themselves in fun learning activities. Teachers have to find suitable activities that are purposeful and meaningful for students in order for them to explore various possibilities in knowledge and skill improvement. For example, teachers can introduce songs, poetry, music and art in teaching the language which will enable students to have fun in carrying out these activities.

Activity 3 Can you identify two activities that can be fun and meaningful in a language classroom? Answer: _____________________________________________________ Chenfeld (1995) claims young children never get their earliest words are body words. tired in showing off their

bodies. They love repetition, familiar chants, games and challenges. Some of According to the author, their first accomplishments are skills of body coordination where a teacher can combine two or three movements, such as clap and turn, jump and clap; and jump, clap and turn. Through body movement children express their understanding of ideas and language. When children are given opportunities to enjoy experiences involving their bodies and their senses they feel good about themselves and others. Along with healthy body they develop healthy self concepts. One way of making songs and poetry fun is by coming up with interesting activities such as

25

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

action songs where students will be able to do body movement while singing, chanting or reciting. Thinking quesiton What do you understand with the term purposeful and meaningful activities? 3.2.2.3 Teaching is learner-centered The activities planned should allow learners to explore and experiment ideas. This will allow them to adopt critical thinking skills in seeking for solution. Therefore, teachers must identify students needs before designing suitable activities for them. Learner-centered teaching allows teachers to optimize the opportunities for the learners to learn. This is achieved by allowing learners to experiment and investigate by themselves. This will enable active engagement in the learning process. Furthermore, Piaget (1970) claims children are active learners and thinkers. Therefore they can construct knowledge from actively interacting with the physical environment in developmental stages. They learn through their own individual actions and exploration. 3.2.2.4 Integration of salient new technologies In the new millenium, ICT has dominated the education industry. Various

methods and approaches of using ICT are applied in assisting teachers to impart knowledge and skills to young learners. Allowing pupils to learn through ICT will enhance language learning in the classroom besides instillling creativity and innovation. Technology also allows teachers to be creative in customizing their own materials besides making learning more meaningful for the students. Examples of Web technologies are blogs, Wikis, YouTube and online big books among others.

3.2.2.5 Character building infused 26

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Teachers should be able to infuse character building among young learners through the use of literary texts. Songs and poetry can help students develop their personality traits besides being articulate, confident and resourceful through performances in the classroom. Teachers should be able to highlight the values embedded in particular songs and poetry because this will help students understand about themselves and their place in the world. Furthermore, it will also develop ans shape their attitudes about themselves and of others.

3.2.2.6 Assessment for learning Two forms of assessment are carried out in the primary classroom; formative and summative. Formative is an ongoing assessment carried out by the teacher throughout the term to assess students performance. On the other hand, the summative assessment is carried out at the end of the term or of a particular unit. Assessment is crucial to enable teachers to know what their students have gained or learnt. Besides, it also allow teachers to plan suitable activities and materials based on the students existing knowledge. So far, you have read the five pedagogical principles that underline the KSSR sylllabus in the primary school. Now let us look at the principles that are crucial in teaching songs and poetry for young learners.

3.3. Pedagogical Principles in Teaching Songs and Poetry for Young Learners Teaching Songs and poetry for young learners involves several pedagogical principles. Activity 4 Can you name a few pedagogical principles that are crucial in teaching Songs and Poetry for Young learners?

27

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

_____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________

Read and understand the scenario below. Puan Zahedah was upset with the outcome of her lesson today. She chosed the right poem for her Year Three class. She even designed her own teaching materials so that her students could have fun with those colourful materials. Even bringing in the real football into the classroom and showing a video of the football match did not have any effect on the students. They were rather passive and played ignorant to what she was saying throughout the lesson. Perhaps these girls need to be reprimanded for being naughty was what Puan Zahedah wrote in her reflection.

Activity 5 Based on the scenario above, identify two reasons for the Year Three students behaviour towards Puan Zahedahs lesson. _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ There are a few things that you need to consider before planning a lesson using songs and poetry in the classroom. Puan Zahedahs students consist of 10 yearold girls. She needs to consider the students interest before deciding on the 28

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

topic of the lesson. For example, football may not be the students favourite sports, hence they were not interested in the lesson. Second, making students watch part of a football match is definately not suitable to be adopted in the classroom as well. Therefore, the selection of content needs to be considered by Puan Zahedah.

Activity 6 Now read the following reflection of an English teacher from a rural school.

I tried introducing songs in the classroom. However, the students are not keen in learning anything. They could hardly use the language and are unable to memorize the lyrics of the song. Despite being in Year 4, I think this is not a suitable song for them.

The teacher definately had a hard time with her students since she used a rather difficult song for them. Although the song may be appropriate in terms of values instilled in the lyrics, the teacher should have taken into consideration her students proficiency level. Since these students are of low proficiency, they The would have a difficult time trying to understand the lyrics of the song. repetitive in nature. This will enable students to remember words easily. By simply playing a song for students to listen to may not be adequate. The teacher needs to find suitable resources for her students to listen as well as to view. One example is the use of video which is available online. Activity 7 Read the following dialogue between a teacher and the Headmaster 29

teacher could have selected songs with simple sentence structure which are

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Headmaster: Puan Lay See: Headmaster: Puan Lay See:

I understand that your students make noise everytime you enter the classroom. Actually, I have a difficult time teaching this particular class. The students are rather passive. Have you tried various strategies in teaching these students? Yes, I have tried almost everything. For example, yesterday I taught them a very interesting poem on Gopher. I know they have never heard of the word before. But it is our job to teach them new things, right? What was your students reaction?

Headmaster: Puan Lay See:

Headmaster: Puan Lay See:

They were not interested as usual. I even brought a small rat to show them an example. Half the class screamed out loud and one even wanted to kill the poor rat. Dont you think this poem is rather too difficult for your Year 2 students?

Headmaster:

I thought they would enjoy reading it. Its informational you know. They would have learnt new vocabulary such as rodent, predators, tunnel and so on. Moreover, I have been teaching poetry for the past three weeks. I think we need to look at this issue quite seriously. First, you need to...

1, Identify the reasons why Puan Lay See failed in teaching the poem to her students? _____________________________________________________

30

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

_____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________ 2. As the Headmaster, what advice would you provide for Puan Lay See to improve her teaching? ____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ Puan Lay See needs to consider a few factors before selecting suitable texts for her students. First, she needs to create opportunities for her students to extend and develop their skills according to their personal interests and abilities. Since rodent is an unfamiliar name for the Year Two students, the teacher could have introduced a poem of a familiar animal. The selected songs and poems need to be motivating, able to develop imagination, stimulate curiosity, draw on personal experience, encourage participation and create a desire to continue learning. By introducing familiar animals, students will have the desire to move further to identify unfamiliar animals. Second, introducing similar types of poem to the students may lead to boredom. Puan Lay See needs to consider including different genres, topics and themes that will engage her students in learning. Third, the selection of topic needs to cater to the students age. It would be quite difficult for a 8 year old student to understand difficult words such as rodent.

Activity 8 Read the poem below. Take a Snowball 31

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Take a snowball, put it on the ground, push it, roll it, make it big and round. Look, your snowman is big and tall but has no eyes, no nose at all. Two stones will do and a carrot, too. Now, Mister Snowman, how are you?
Source: http://www.grin.com/en/e-book/106150/songs-and-rhymes-inteaching-english-at-primary-schools

As a teacher, would you select this poem to be taught in the English classroom? Give your reasons. _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________

Young children need to learn in a language-immersed environments where they will be able to learn and appreciate other peoples values and culture. Songs and poetry will enable this to happen since it is a common treads that tie people together. Although, the topic may be something new for the learners, for example snowman as depicted in the poem above, children will be able to know parts of a foreign culture besides satisfying their natural curiosity about something new. The poem above is suitable for young learners since it allows for active discovery and construction of meaning, and leading to the use of language as a vehicle to do things. Songs and poems are important elements of each culture. By learning this authentic material pupils get to know parts of a foreign culture. It satisfies childrens natural curiosity about everything new. Being familiar with songs and rhymes in a foreign language will allow pupils to feel closer to the foreign culture and its language. If the pupils hear the same melodies or similar rhymes they 32

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

are astonished at the parallels between their own culture and the foreign one. So the foreign cultures arent alarming and frightening but interesting and worth being discovered. Its an important contribution to the development of tolerance and open-mindedness

Read the conversation below between an English teacher and her student. Teacher: Student: Teacher: Student: Teacher: Student: Teacher: Student: Can someone tell me about the poem? Why was the boy sad? The boy was sad because his sister did not let him into her room. Do you have a sister? Yes, I have two sisters. Do you like your sisters? Yes, I love them very much. Why? My eldest sister takes good care of me. She always brings me sweets when she comes back from school. My second sister will share her toys with me. Teacher: Are you happy being with your sisters? Student: Yes, I am happy. Not like the boy who is sad. Teacher: What do you think the boys brother and sister should do? Student: They must share their toys with their brother. Despite the abundance of poems and songs available in print and online, you must be very careful in selecting the right text for your students. The most important element that you need to look into is the value that is instilled in the poem or song. For example, the teacher in the excerpt above has successfully related the value of the poem to the students personal experience. A good teacher will be able to provide opportunities for children to make connections between their understanding of lesson themes and their own personal experiences. This will allow for understanding and promoting ownership of learning. Indirectly, learners will be able to model the right behavior to be adopted when they are dealing with their siblings or friends.

Activity 9 Now based on your understanding, list down the pedagogical principles that you need to focus on in the selection of songs and poetry for young learners. 33

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Answer: ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ ___________________ Tutorial task 1. Read the poem below. Identify if this poem is suitable to be taught to a group of young learners. Provide reasons for your choice of answer. Once it was snowing. Everything was cold. Everything was asleep. Then the sun came out and warmed the ground. It started to rain. Seeds under the ground started to grow. Little caterpillar s crawled around. They curled up and turned into buterflies. The sun got hotter. The seeds grew to flowers. Butterflies flew around. It was spring.
Source: Chenfeld, M. B. (1995: 36)

2. Study the diagram below and fill in the box with suitable words/pharses.
Enjoyable Full of practice Supported Meaningful Purposeful Social

34

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Read, C. (1998, April). The challenge of teaching children. English Teaching Professional, 7: 810. Retrieved September 1, 2012, from http://www.etprofessional.com/articles/challenge.pdf

SESSION 2 (3 hours) 3.4 Linking Poetry and Songs for Dimensions in the Malaysian Primary ESL Curriculum Besides pedagogical principles, the teaching of English in the primary schools is also based on three broad themes. 35

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Activity 10 With reference to the English language syllabus identify the three broad themes. i. ii. iii. __________________________________ __________________________________ __________________________________

You will notice that the three broad themes are highlighted in all primary school English language syllabi. They play an important role in the teaching of English. The three themes are shown in Figure 1.

possessions values behaviour attitude Stories belongings relationships Self, Family, Friends brother sister friends neighbours objects Shapes Transportation food Knowledge colours health

Two of the objectives highlighted in the English Syllabus are for the students to : appreciate and demonstrate understanding of English language literary or creative works for enjoyment,

36

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

read and comprehend a range of English texts for information and enjoyment.

Therefore, it is important for you to be able to activate students imagination and interests through fun and meaningful learning.

Activity 11 With reference to the Year Two English syllabus, identify three learning standards related to the teaching of songs and poetry in the classroom. i. ________________________________________________ ________________________________________________ ii. _______________________________________________ _______________________________________________ iii. _______________________________________________ ________________________________________________

In order to achieve these learning standards, the selected materials must be related to the relevant themes. Now let us look at each theme closely.

3.4.1 World of self, family and friends

The young of the human species are not like sea turtles left to hatch themselves then run for their lives to the water. They are not like insects, curled in cocoons 37

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

until they must wing it on their own. The most helpless of all infants, human babies ae totally dependent on the care of the others.
Source: Chenfeld, M. B. (1995: 109): Creative experiences for young children. FL: Harcourt Brace College Publishers.

Based on the statement above, one will understand the importance of educating young learners from the day they were born. Young learners are very much dependent on elders for guidance to survive in this world. Therefore, a teacher plays an important role in coaching them to acquire the necessary skills and knowledge in order for them to become life long learners. The theme on World of self, family and friends mainly focuses on the child/learner. A child learns to be familiar with oneself followed by family members and later the friends they meet. Therefore, this theme highlights three specific areas, namely; self family friends

Children becomes very conscious of themselves as they are growing up. First, they become curious about themselves. They are eager to know about themselves such as body parts, relationships, clothings, possessions, likes and dislikes. As a result, children will first learn things related to them. For example, wanting to taste each food they see, eager to touch things they come across due to curiosity and getting to know people around them.

Activity 12 Look at the list of topics below. Label each topic according to the themes by placing a tick ( ) in the right box. 38

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Topic Hooray! We are back Do the right thing Where am I? Read me a story I am special Delicious food Growing plants When I grow up. Caring and sharing Looking good On the Farm Good deeds Save the sea creatures Reuse, recycle Myths

World of Self

World of Family

World of Friends

Children must know that in addition to the family they live with and their extended families, their family of friends at school, they belong to the great Human Family. Especially in these difficult times for so many children who feel alienated and abandoned, their relationship to greater family structures is important and appreciated. Source: Chenfeld, M. B. (1995: 125): Creative experiences for young children. FL: Harcourt Brace College Publishers Next, students are conscious of their own family members. Family is basic to all people consisting of many members. Family members are a source of creative and important learning experiences. Since family members consist of parents, stepparents, uncles, aunts, grandparents, cousins and siblings among others, they have much to contribute to childrens lives. Children can talk about oneself and family and their personal details. They can also talk about happenings in their everyday life. Sometimes we have such good friends and neighbours that we think of them as members of our own family. Friends and family members are people who care about us. 39

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Activity 13 Read the poem below and answer the questions that follow. The Greedy Boy Rain or shine I want whats mine, so said the greedy boy. My game, my bike, my ball of twine, my basket full of toys. I dont care I will not share, he said to the bitter end, and so with despair, no one would dare to make this boy their friend.
Timothy Rasinski

Would you use this poem to teach your primary school students? Give your reasons. ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ The Greedy Boy is a good poem to be introduced to primary school students for these reasons. The poem focuses on a boy who refuses to share his toys with his friends. Being possessive is one common characteristic among young children which normally ends up with fights among brothers, sisters and friends. They need to be taught the value of friendship and being able to share their things with others. This poem highlights the need to share among family and friends. It also highlights the consequence of not sharing that is not having any friends to play with. 40

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

3.4.2 World of knowledge The Oxford dictionary defines knowledge as the state or condition of understanding [some matter], acquired by learning. It is best achieved by using songs and poems because the outcome of individuals mental processes can be given external representations through symbolic systems such as language and music. One way of making young learners gain knowedge is through songs and poetry. Since they are attracted to music, songs and poetry can be used as tools to teach these learners the required knowledge. For example, learning of alphabets, numbers, objects around them, festivals and celebrations among others.

Activity 14 Rearrange the topics listed below in the order you would teach them for a Year 1 class. Topic All about me Chad My Milkman I see colours In the garden Lets be friends Lets go shopping Listen to me Look at me Meet my family Sound around us Stay clean, be happy When is your birthday? Order

41

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

These topics are taken from the Year 1 English syllabus. You will notice that they are sequenced in the following manner: Talking about self and friends Ways of taking care of oneself Getting to know family members and friends Learning about things around them

World of knowledge deals with the things young learners see or feel around them. For example, in Year One, they are required to identify and distinguish the shapes of the letters in the alphabet. They are also required to voice the sounds of words. Learners are also required ot listen and follow simple instructions in the classroom. Besides this, they also need to know how to keep themselves clean and healthy. These information are necessary for young learners to learn and follow through the theme World of Knowledge. One example of a poem dealing with the theme is provided below.

Red Means Stop Stop, stop! Please, do not go. The big red sign Tells us so. I know that, And so does Joe. Read means stop, And green means go. Tim Rasinski

42

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

The above poem is suitable to be taught in the primary classroom. The topic is relevant since it provides information on traffic rules and regulations. Learners will be able to be aware of road safety and learn from young the importance of following these rules. Besides, they will also learn colours which is another important aspect to be taught.

Activity 15 Heres a Rabbit Oh, heres a fluffy rabbit With two ears so very long See him hop, hop, hop about On legs so very strong, He nibbles, nibbles carrots For his dinner every day And as soon as he has had enough He hops, hops, hops away.

Identify and discuss why this poem falls under the theme World of Knowledge. What would the students learn from the above poem? ________________________________________________ ________________________________________________ ________________________________________________ ________________________________________________

3.4.3 World of stories The theme World of Stories focuses on stories that capture young learners interests in learning. Young children loves to listen to stories and

43

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

these stories can be in the form of poems and songs. One example is shown below.

Three Little Kittens Three little kittens, They lost their mittens, And they began to cry, Oh, mother, dear, We sadly fear, Our mittens we have lost. What! Lost your mittens, You naughty kittens, Then you shall have no pie. Meow, meow, Then you shall have no pie. The three little kittens, They found their mittens, And they began to cry, Oh, mother, dear, See here, see here, Our mittens we have found. What, found your mittens, Then you're good kittens, And you shall have some pie. Purr-rr, purr-rr, Then you shall have some pie. Three little kittens, Put on their mittens, And soon ate up the pie. Oh, mother, dear, We sadly fear, Our mittens we have soiled. What! Soiled your mittens, You naughty kittens, 44

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

And they began to sigh. Meow, meow, And they began to sigh. The three little kittens, They washed their mittens, And hung them out to dry. Oh, mother, dear, Do you not hear, Our mittens we have washed? What! Washed your mittens? Then you're good kittens! But I smell a rat close by. Meow, meow, We smell a rat close by.
Source: http://www.ivyjoy.com/fables/mothergoose.html#woman

Activity 16 Three Little Kittens is poem suitable to be introduced for the primary school children. Discuss how this poem can be used to help students in in learning the language. ___________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________

45

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Read the poem A Mouses Tail written by Lewis Caroll which is taken from the movie Alice in Wonderland. As you read, identify if this poem is suitable for your students in school.

The Mouse's Tale by Lewis Carroll "Mine is a long and a sad tale!" said the Mouse, turning to Alice, and sighing. "It is a long tail, certainly," said Alice, looking down with wonder at the Mouse's tail; "but why do you call it sad?" And she kept on puzzling about it while the Mouse was speaking, so that her idea of the tale was something like this:

"Fury said to a mouse, That he met in the house, 'Let us both go to law: I will prosecute
you. Come, I'll take no denial; We must have a trial: For
really this morning I've nothing to do.'
Said the mouse to the cur, 'Such a trial, dear sir, With no jury or judge, would be

46

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY


wasting our breath.'
'I'll be judge, I'll be jury,' Said cunning old Fury; 'I'll try the whole cause, and condemn you to death.' "

"You are not attending!" said the Mouse to Alice, severely. "What are you thinking of?" "I beg your pardon," said Alice very humbly, "you had got to the fifth bend, I think?" "I had not!" cried the Mouse sharply and very angrily. "A knot!" said Alice, always ready to make herself useful, and looking anxiously about her. "Oh, let me help to undo it!" "I shall do nothing of the sort, said the Mouse, getting up and walking away. "You insult me by talking such nonsense!" Source: http://bootless.net/mouse.html

This poem is suitable for upper primary students for these reasons. First, the teacher can turn the text into a mental movie that allows students to visualize the content of the poem. This is possible since the text is taken from the famous movie Alice in Wonderland. Second, student can infer

what happened before and after the poem which will further enhance their understanding of the text. Third, the choice of diction used should be Words such as trial,

suitable for students in the upper primary school.

jury, prosecute and judge can be taught to them since they should be able to understand these terms.

47

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Further Reading Please refer to the following website for additional information. Salcedo, C. S. (2002). The effect of songs in the foreign language classroom on text recall and involuntary mental rehearsal. (unpublished doctoral dissertation). Louisiana State University, Retrieved from http://etd.lsu.edu/docs/available/etd-1111102204823/unrestricted/Salcedo_dis.pdf

Tutorial Task Read the poem below. Discuss why this poem is suitable to be used in the primary classroom. Justify your choice by making reference to the pedagogical principles. Marys Lamb Mary had a little lamb, Its fleece was white as snow; And everywhere that Mary went, The lamb was sure to go. It followed her to school one day Which was against the rule; I made the children laugh and play, To see a lamb at school. And so the teacher turned him out, But still he lingered near, And waited patiently about, Till Mary did appear. And then he ran to her and laid, His head upon her arm, As if he said, Im not afraid Youll shield me from all harm. What makes the lamb love Mary so? 48

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

The little children cry; O Mary loves the lamb, you know, The teacher did reply. And you each gentle animal, In confidence may bind, And make it follow at your call, If you are always kind. Sarah Josepha Hale (1788-1879) source: http://www.mothergoosecaboose.com/newstuff/nrb/NURSERYRHYMEBO OK.pdf

References
Chenfeld, M. B. (1995: 109): Creative experiences for young children. FL: Harcourt Brace College Publishers Edelenbos, P.; Johnstone, R.; Kubanek, A. (2006). The main pedagogical principles underlying the teaching of languages to very young learners Languages for the children of Europe. Retrieved from http://ec.europa.eu/education/policies/lang/doc/young_en.pdf Geyer, V. 92001). Songs and rhymes in teaching English at primary schools . Retrieved from http://www.grin.com/en/e-book/106150/songs-and-rhymesin-teaching-english-at-primary-schools Piaget, J. (1970). The Science of Education and the Psychology of the Child . Grossman: New York. Rasinski, T. and Karen McGuigan Brothers (2006). Poems for word study. USA: Shell Education Publishing. Read, C. (1998, April). The challenge of teaching children. English Teaching Professional, 7: 8-10. Retrieved from http://www.etprofessional.com/articles/challenge.pdf Mother goose and selected nursery rhymes. Retrieved from http://www.ivyjoy.com/fables/mothergoose.html#woman

49

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

TOPIC 4A

PRINCIPLES OF SELECTION AND ADAPTATION OF SONGS

4.0 SYNOPSIS Topic 4A highlights on the principles of selection and adaptation of songs. This session will focus on the principles of selection of songs for young learners by looking at the purposes for using songs in the ESL classroom, the principles of song selection and the techniques of using songs in the classroom. It will also highlight on the adaptation of songs for the language classroom.

4.1

LEARNING OUTCOMES By the end of Topic 4, you will be able to: identify the principles of selection and adaptation of songs for use in the primary ESL classroom justify the choice of song selection using the criteria of text selection

50

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

adapt and justify songs collected using the principles of text simplification

4.2

FRAMEWORK OF TOPICS SONGS

Selection

Adaptation

Purposes Technique Criteria of s Text CONTENT Selection 4.2 TOPIC FOUR A (3 HOURS) Teachers should "place students in an environment in which it is appropriate to use target utterances in a genuinely communicative fashion." (Gatbonton and Segalowitz, 1988, p.476). As songs present an authentic use of language, teachers are advised to use songs as part of their classroom teaching repertoire. This is because apart from presenting language in an authentic way, songs are also easily obtainable, provide vocabulary, grammar and cultural aspects and are fun for your students. Songs provide valuable speaking, listening and language practice in and out of the classroom. It will also look at learner levels and cultural considerations. 4.2.1 SELECTION OF SONGS FOR YOUNG LEARNERS The following section will focus on the types of songs, purposes of using songs in the classrooms, the criteria of text selection and suggestions of techniques or activities that could be used in using songs in the language classroom. 4.2.1.1 Types of songs

51

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Lets think about this...


In your opinion, what type of songs would be suitable for classroom use? List at least 3 types. Why are the songs you have listed above suitable for classroom use? List at least 5 criteria.

There are different types and genres of songs you can choose from to teach in the language classroom. Here are some examples of the different types of songs that can be used with your students:

No 1.

Types Special occasion songs

Description Songs which are sung on certain occasions or at certain times of the year. Songs, usually childrens songs, which are sung to accompany certain games Songs which require actions or some sort of mime to be performed while singing them. Specially written songs for teaching.

2.

Songs and games

3.

Action songs

4.

Songs where one structure or a lot of lexis is repeated over and over again Songs which tells a story.

5.

Songs that narrate stories.

(Source: Hubbard, P., Jones, H. , Thornton, B. & Wheeler, R. A Training Course for TEFL. 1991)

52

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Provide some examples for the each type of songs listed in the table in 6.3.1

4.2.1.2

Purposes for Using Songs in the Language Classroom

Lets think about this...


Why do teachers use songs in the classroom? List at least 5 reasons. What are the advantages of using songs in the teaching and learning of English classroom? List at least 5 advantages.

There is strong practical evidence supporting the use of music in the English language classroom; there is also a growing body of research confirming that songs are a useful tool in language acquisition. In fact musical and language processing occur in the same area of the brain (Medina, 1993). Murphy (1992) suggests that carefully selected songs are particularly appropriate for language learning, because their discourse includes simple, affective language with riskless communication qualities, familiar native texts, a high verb count, and familiar vocabulary. Certain songs may be easily remembered due to the quality of the melody and the text. Pop songs and advertisement jingles have melodies that are catchy and easily learned thus making them very suitable to be used in the language classroom with young learners. Songs can be used for a number of purposes and there are many reasons why songs can be considered a valuable pedagogical tool. Perhaps the greatest benefit to using songs in the classroom is that they can be fun! In line with the National Philosophy of Education Malaysia, the main purposes for using songs in

53

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

the ESL classroom is because of its potential to develop students in the following areas: Personal development Aesthetic development Cultural development Language learning development Moral values Some key reasons songs can work exceedingly well in ESL language classroom include the following: Songs exposes students to authentic, natural language. Grammar and cultural aspects can be introduced through songs. Songs exposes students to a wide range of accents. Songs can be selected to suit the needs and interests of the students. Songs can help young learners improve their listening skills and pronunciation.. It provides pronunciation practice (stress and rhythm, and individual sounds) and intonation when speaking, moving around and using gestures. This will therefore help young learners to improve their speaking skills Songs can also be useful tools in the learning of vocabulary, sentence structures, and sentence patterns. A variety of new vocabulary can be introduced to students through songs. Unlike structure drills, songs give students intensive practice in selected patterns, but without boredom. Songs are usually very easily obtainable. Songs promote learner independence.

54

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

It increases students motivation to learn the language (weaker students will feel a real sense of achievement when they are able to learn a new song).

Songs help to promote cooperation (singing is a group activity that helps bring students together and breaks down barriers of reserve which prevents them learning the language effectively)

Using songs reinforces other things the teacher is working on in the classroom such as discipline, teaching students to work together, rewarding good behaviour and fostering teamwork amongst students.

Students have fun and are therefore motivated for the rest of the lesson and future lessons. Students learn quicker than with other methods. Songs make the learning experience more memorable. Students lose some of their inhibitions about speaking out.
(Source:

http://www.eslbase.com/articles/songs)

4.2.1.3

Criteria for Songs Selection

Lets think about this...


What factors should be considered when selecting songs for the language classroom? List at least 5 factors. Why do you think that the factors you have identified are crucial? Justify.

The way you teach and the practice activities you do depend to a large extent on the sort of songs you have chosen. There are factors that you need to consider

55

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

when using songs and how they can be used effectively in your language classroom. i. Learner Levels

Learner levels is the most important criteria that must be considered in the selection of a teaching learning material, in this case songs. Learner levels is also an important consideration in designing teaching learning activities. Much of this have been elaborated earlier in the section Readibility of Text. Nuttal (1982) argues a text should be at the right level with the students proficiency. Students can be categorized into three levels of proficiency which are elementary, intermediate and advanced levels. In selecting songs, a teacher needs to choose the ones that suit their students level in terms of text difficulty and language complexity (vocabulary, structure). When we try to find a readable text, we have to assess the level of its structural and lexical difficulty. Still, the students can still deal with more difficult texts, provided the task is not too challenging. ii. Cultural Considerations

Songs reflect culture and by using these songs can give your students the opportunity to acquire a better understanding of the culture of the target language. In choosing songs, you have to consider the following factors: Cultural biasness Sensitivity to the impact of culturally-induced behaviour Familiarity to learners background knowledge The use words or expressions which are perceived as inappropriate, offensive or vulgar in the context of the students If you find that the lyrics of the songs are not suitable, for example, if it contains slang or offensive words, you may need to adapt the lyrics to suit your students. 56

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

iii.

Other Considerations

Little (1983) offered some song selection criteria for language teachers: the song should be popular the song should be meaningful to the student the song should be slow enough to test comprehension as well as clear enunciation on the part of the singer the level of language used in the song should be simple with no difficult idioms, slang or vulgarities the tune should be catchy, easily remembered and age-appropriate

The following are criteria for selection and adaptation of songs that need to be considered : A. B. C. Readability of text Suitability of content Exploitability

These song selection criteria are discussed in the following sections. A. Readability of Text

Lets think about this...


What do you think the term readibility of text mean? What does it refer to?

Readability is a measure of the comprehensibility of written text. It is the combination of lexical (i.e. vocabulary) and structural difficulty found in a text. (Nuttal,1982). Hence, the songs chosen should be at the right level of difficulty for your students. Therefore, select songs that are appropriate to your students 57

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

level of proficiency in terms of sentence length, word length within sentences, complexity of vocabulary and sentence structure. The following are some questions you might want to ponder on when selecting: What is my students language level? How much new vocabulary (lexical) is acceptable? Are there structural difficulties in the song? Can your students understand the meaning of the songs and can it be made clear in a quick and easy way?
(Source:: http://www.usingenglish.com/articles/using-songs-with-young-learners.html)

B.

Suitability of Content

Lets think about this...


What does suitability of content mean? Which kind of content might be suitable and might not be suitable?

Students interest is among the most important requirement you should take into consideration in text selection (Nuttal, 1982). Songs can be selected to suit the needs and interests of your own students. There are many English songs available for selection with suitable themes, levels and vocabulary which is not at all difficult. When selecting songs for their content suitability, you need to make sure of the following: what type and genre of songs appeal to your students? is the content of the song (issue raised) appropriate for your students (social cultural background, maturity level)? does the song present an authentic use of language?

58

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

does the song contain slang or offensive words and overly crude, foul or otherwise objectionable language which is inappropriate especially for young learners?
(Source: http://www.usingenglish.com/articles/using-songs-with-young-learners.html)

With careful screening, you can compile an extensive library of usable songs for students in your language classrooms. C. Exploitability

Lets think about this...


What do you understand by the word exploitability?

Exploitability means that the text should facilitate the development of reading skills in order to help the students become competent and independent readers (Nuttal, 1982). However, in the context of song selection, the term exploitation could also be translated as the facilitation of learning. This means, a good song is one which you can exploit in your teaching. When you exploit a song, you make use of it to develop your students competence in achieving their learning outcomes. When selecting songs for their exploitability, you need to make sure of the following factors: is the song suitable for your students in terms genre, speed, content (issues, language complexity)? is there repetition of particular words and phrases? is the language in the song similar to the language they will be able to use in other parts of the class and/ or outside the class?

59

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

does the song consist of the vocabulary / grammatical item / sentence structure you wish to teach? are the songs tune and lyric memorable? does the song allow for plenty of actions and movements?
(Adapted from http://www.usingenglish.com/articles/using-songs-with-young-learners.html)

Choose a catchy song that students can easily sing and memorize until next time you sing it in class. Choose songs that which are easy to understand, to explain and to express. Avoid translation as much as possible but instead, perform actions. This provides a good platform for students to have fun and therefore motivates them for the rest of the lesson and future lessons. 4.2.1.4 Techniques in Using Songs with Young Learners

There are a variety of different ways or techniques to use songs in the classroom. Some teachers prefer to use background music and others use music lyrics as the basis of a lesson. Generally, at the lower primary level, techniques employed focussing on prosodic features (suprasegmental features) of the language are often emphasized. On the other hand, techniques employed at the higher primary level focussed on the practice of grammar items.

Lets think about this...


Can you think of two activities each, to be carried out with the song Old McDonald and Ten Little Indians?

The following are several techniques you can employ when using songs in the language classroom: Dictation Focus questions 60

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Class discussion Add a final verse True-false statements Gap fills or close texts Teach reading comprehension Teach listening for details and gist Put lines into the correct sequence Teach pronunciation and intonation Teach and build vocabulary and idioms Circle the antonyms/synonyms of the given words Introduce a new theme or topic (colours/feelings etc) Change the mood (liven things up or calm things down) Review material (background music improves memory) Breaking the ice in a class where students do not know each other or are having difficulty communicating Teach songs and rhymes about difficult grammar and spelling rules that need to be memorized ("i before e", irregular verbs, phrasal verbs)
Source: http://www.englishclub.com/teaching-tips/music-classroom.htm http://www2.vobs.at/ludescher/Grammar/teaching_grammar_through_songs _a.htm

Here is a sample activity that you could use with your students: Elephant Song (teacher and students actions are indicated in brackets) What is that noise (cup hand to ear) Up in the attic (point over your head) It is an elephant (make a trunk with your arm) Cycling round and round. (cycling motion with legs) 61

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

It is an elephant (make a trunk with your arm) All chic and elegant (fashion model pose) With one tail here (make trunk with your arm) And one behind. (point to where your tail would be if you had one!) Repeat the song a number of times, each time, you stop singing one line of the song, but continue to do the action for that line. By the end of the song all you're doing is actions, no singing. (source: http://songsandpoetryforesl.weebly.com/) A. Tips on Carrying Out Activities Using Songs

Here are some tips on how to use poems with young learners in the English classroom. i. ii. iii. iv. v. vi. vii. Pick the right song. If it is a new song introduce it slowly. If you like the song but find that some of the words are too difficult, consider adapting the song. Teach the lyrics of the song by using materials like flash cards or book. Teach the song slowly at first, if possible use meaningful gestures. Play the song, and give it a try! Play games that deal with the vocabulary in the song.

(Source: http://www.teachingvillage.org/2010/03/24/teaching-young-learners-withsongs-by-matt-richelson/)

4.2.2 ADAPTATION OF SONGS The following section will focus on factors to consider when adapting songs for use in the language classroom.

Lets think about this...


Sometimes we find ourselves in a position whereby we need to adapt 62

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

some of the songs we would like use. List at least 5 reasons why we might need to adapt some of the songs.

Some of the most basic children's songs can sometimes be too difficult. Hence, you may need to adapt the songs to suit your students. Instances where an adaptation may be needed are: when the songs beat is too fast when the song is too long when the vocabulary and sentence structure used are too complex or too difficult when the lyrics does not allow any gesture and dance the lyrics may not be suitable and contain slang or offensive words and grammatical mistakes when the lyrics only marginally teach the language points you want to focus on. The following are factors of consideration in adapting songs: Lexical items Sentence structure Content As such, you may have to do any one or all of the following to meet to the needs of your students or your teaching point: adapt the song by making the melody appropriately paced: make the tempo or beat slower if the songs beat is too fast. find an appropriate point to end the song if it is too long. adapt the song by replacing the wordings / lyrics which are difficult with simpler words. simplify the words or sentence structure of the lyrics of the songs chosen. reduce most carefully some of the lyrics of the songs chosen. 63

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

adapt the song by replacing some of the words with words which will allow gestures. adapt the song by including the language points you want to focus on.

In adapting the songs you have selected, you can made them simple for your students by creating songs that are appropriately paced, lyrically simple, full of space for movement, easily taught through gesture, and FUN! In the box below is a modified lyrics from the song the song The Wheels on the Bus The adaptations are in bold. By adapting the song in this way, you have the advantage of being able to select a particular language feature and incorporate it into the song. This feature could be an item of vocabulary, syntax, phonology, or a simple conversational expression. This allows you to incorporate more songs into a curriculum and save time searching for and learning new songs.
SONG: THE WHEELS ON THE BUS
Original Lyrics

Alternative Lyrics
The fish in the sea goes swim, swim, swim, swim, swim, swim, swim, swim, swim. The fish in the sea goes swim, swim, swim, all day long! The lobster in the sea goes pinch, pinch, pinch, pinch, pinch, pinch, pinch, pinch, pinch. The lobster in the sea goes pinch, pinch, pinch, all day long! The crab in the sea goes click, click, click, click, click, click, click, click, click. The crab in the sea goes click, click, click, all day long! The octopus in the sea goes wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle. The octopus in the sea goes wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, all day long.

The wheels on the bus go round and round. round and round. round and round. The wheels on the bus go round and round, all through the town! The people on the bus go up and down. up and down. up and down. The people on the bus go up and down, all through the town! The horn on the bus goes beep, beep, beep. beep, beep beep. beep, beep, beep. The horn on the bus goes beep, beep, beep. all through the town! The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish. swish, swish, swish. swish, swish, swish. The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish, all through the town! The signals on the bus go blink, blink, blink.

64

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

blink, blink, blink. blink, blink, blink. The signals on the bus go blink, blink, blink, all through the town! The motor on the bus goes zoom, zoom, zoom. zoom, zoom, zoom. zoom, zoom, zoom. The motor on the bus goes zoom, zoom, zoom, all through the town! The babies on the bus go waa, waa, waa. waa, waa, waa. waa, waa, waa. The babies on the bus go waa, waa, waa, all through the town! The parents on the bus go shh, shh, shh. shh, shh, shh. shh, shh, shh. The parents on the bus go shh, shh, shh, all through the town! The mommy on the bus says, I love you. I love you, I love you The daddy on the bus says, I love you, too. All through the town. Source: http://bussongs.com/songs/wheels-on-the-bus-go-round-and-round.php http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jdqk6SMfIvA

Can you come up with other alternatives to the song lyrics above?

More practice...

Practice 1
1. 2. Identify the melody of the songs below by carrying out a search for the song on Youtube . Identify the level and the background of the students you can use the songs with in a language classroom. (year, rural/urban, proficiency level) 65

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

3. 4.

Think of a few activities to carry out based on the poem. Justify your answers using the principles of text selection below: - the teaching learning purposes - the selection criteria - your learners level (proficiency, maturity) - cultural considerations Adapt the song using the principles of text simplification and justify your adaptation.
Its a Small World Miss Lucy Had a Baby Miss Lucy had a baby, His name was Tiny Tim, She put him in the bathtub To see if he could swim. He drank up all the water, He ate up all the soap, He tried to eat the bathtub, But it wouldn't go down his throat. Miss Lucy called the doctor, Miss Lucy called the nurse, Miss Lucy called the lady With the alligator purse.

5.

Its a world of laughter, a world of tears, Its a world of hopes, and a world of fears, Theres so much that we share, That its time were aware, Its a small world after all. Its a small world after all (3 x), Its a small, small world. There is just one moon and one golden sun, And a smile means friendship to everyone, Though the mountains divide, And the oceans are wide, Its a small world after all.

Itsy-Bitsy Spider The itsy-bitsy spider Climbed up the water spout Down came the rain And washed the spider out Out came the sun And dried up all the rain And the itsy-bitsy spider Climbed up the spout again

Do Re Mi Doe - a deer, a female deer, Ray - a drop of golden sun, Me - a name I call myself Far - a long, long way to run, Sew - a needle pulling thread, La - a note to follow so, Tea - a drink with jam and bread, That will bring us back to doe, oh,oh,oh.. * Repeat (2 x) Do-Re-Mi-Fa-So-La-Ti-Do, So-Do.
BINGO There was a famer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o BINGO, BINGO, BINGO

Youve Got a Friend By Carole King When you're down and troubled And you need some loving care

66

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY


And nothing, nothing is going right Close your eyes and think of me And soon I will be there To brighten up even your darkest night You just call out my name And you know wherever I am I'll come running to see you again Winter, spring, summer or fall All you have to do is call And I'll be there You've got a friend If the sky above you Grows dark and full of clouds And that old north wind begins to blow Keep your head together And call my name out loud Soon you'll hear me knocking at your door You just call out my name And you know wherever I am I'll come running to see you Winter, spring, summer or fall All you have to do is call And I'll be there Ain't it good to know that you've got a friend When people can be so cold They'll hurt you, and desert you And take your soul if you let them Oh, but don't you let them You just call out my name And you know wherever I am I'll come running to see you again Winter, spring, summer or fall All you have to do is call And I'll be there You've got a friend

and Bingo was his name-o (Clap when you see a * ) There was a famer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o *INGO, *INGO, *INGO and Bingo was his name-o There was a famer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o **NGO, **NGO, **NGO and Bingo was his name-o There was a famer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o ***GO, ***GO, ***GO and Bingo was his name-o There was a famer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o ****O, ****O, ****O and Bingo was his name-o There was a famer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o *****, *****, ***** and Bingo was his name-o There was a famer had a dog and Bingo was his name-o BINGO, BINGO, BINGO and Bingo was his name-o

Practice 2
Writing Parallel Lyrics
London Bridge London Bridge is falling down, Falling down, falling down, London Bridge is falling down, My fair lady. Take the key and lock her up, Lock her up, lock her up, Take the key and lock her up, Lock her up, lock her up, My fair lady.

67

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

a)

The following phrases are also sung similar to the wordings of the verse in bold. 1. Build it up with iron bars 2. Iron bars will bend and break 3. Build it up with silver and gold

Can you come up with other examples for the verse? b)


If Youre Happy If youre happy and you know it, Clap your hands (2 x) If youre happy and you know it, Then youll really want to show it, If youre happy and you know it, Clap your hands.

_________________________ _________________________

Other examples of the first verse: 1. Stamp your feet 2. Nod your head 3. Turn around 4. Say We are! 5. _________________ 6. _________________

Practice 3
Discuss and share your views 1. Browse through the internet and select one from each genre of songs below for the following groups of students: Students background A classroom of Year 4 low proficiency students in the rural area. A classroom of Year 6 high proficiency students in a SBT in Kuala Lumpur. Song genre pop ballad pop ballad

68

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

2. Justify your choice of selection based on the following principles of text selection: - Criteria - Purposes - Techniques - Learners Level - Cultural considerations 3. You may have to adapt the songs classroom use. Justify your adaptation (refer to 6.3.3). 4. Suggest suitable activities based on the songs you have selected and describe in simple teaching steps how you would carry out the activities.

References Cox, C.(2008). Teaching Language Arts: A Student-centered Classroom, (6thed). USA: Allyn & Bacon. Gatbonton, E. & Segalowitz, N. (1988). Creative automatization: Principles for promoting fluency within a communicative framework. TESOL Quarterly, 22, 473-492. Hubbard, P. et al(1991) A Training Course for TEFL.Oxford: Oxford University Press. Little, J. (1983). Pop and rock music in the ESL classroom. TESL Talk, 14 (4), 40-44.1 69

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Malaysian Primary Syllabus KSSR Syllabus Curriculum Specifications Medina, Suzanne L, The Effect of Music on Second Language Vocabulary Acquisition, National Network for Early Language Learning, Vol 6-3, 1993. Murphy, T (1992), The Discourse Op Pop Songs, TESOL Quarterly 26(4), 770774. Nuttall, C.(1982) Teaching Reading Skills in a Foreign Language. Oxford: Heinemann International. Showalter, E. (2002). Teaching Literature. Oxford: Blakewell Publishing. Tomlinson, C.M. and Brown, C.L.(2002) Essentials of Childrens Literature. Boston, USA: Allyn and Bacon.

Websites http://bussongs.com/songs/wheels-on-the-bus-go-round-and-round.php http://www.eslbase.com/articles/songs http://digitaldreamdoor.com/pages/best_balladsddd.html http://www.kidsmusictown.com/ http://songsandpoetryforesl.weebly.com http://www.englishclub.com/teaching-tips/music-classroom.htm http://www.teachingvillage.org/2010/03/24/teaching-young-learners-with-songsby-matt-richelson/

70

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

http://www2.vobs.at/ludescher/Grammar/teaching_grammar_through_songs_a.ht m http://www.usingenglish.com/articles/using-songs-with-young-learners.html

TOPIC 4B

PRINCIPLES OF SELECTION AND ADAPTATION OF POEMS

4.0 SYNOPSIS Topic 4B highlights on the principles of selection and adaptation of poems. This session will focus on the principles of selection of poems for young learners by looking at the purposes for using poems in the ESL classroom, the principles of poem selection and the techniques of using poems in the classroom. It will also highlight on the adaptation of poems for the language classroom. 71

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

4.1 LEARNING OUTCOMES By the end of Topic 4B, you will be able to: identify the principles of selection and adaptation of poems for use in the primary ESL classroom justify choice of poem selection using the criteria of text selection adapt and justify poems collected using the principles of text simplification 4.2 FRAMEWORK OF TOPICS POEMS

Selection

Adaptation

Purposes CONTENT

Criteria of Text Selection

Techniques

CONTENT TOPIC FOUR B (3 HOURS) Students should be exposed to different types of poetry in the language classroom. This exposure will enrichen their knowledge and experience of the target language as it exposes students to authentic language use. Through poetry, students are also exposed to a form of language that can provide new insights through imaginative and beautiful expressive language. 4.3 SELECTION OF POEMS FOR YOUNG LEARNERS 72

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

The following section will focus on purposes of using poems in the classrooms, the criteria of text selection and techniques or activities that could be used in using poems in the language classroom for young learners, including learner levels and cultural considerations. 4.3.1 Purposes for Using Poetry in the Language Classroom

Lets think about this...


Why do teachers use poems in the classroom? List at least 5 reasons. What are the advantages of using poems in the teaching and learning of English classroom? List at least 5 advantages.

Poems can be used for a number of purposes and there are many reasons why poems are used in the classroom. Poems can help young learners improve their listening skills and pronunciation, therefore potentially helping them to improve their speaking skills. Poems can also be useful tools in the learning of vocabulary, sentence structures, and sentence patterns. In selecting poems, you should consider your students potential development of the following areas: Personal Development Aesthetic Development Cultural Development Language Learning Development Moral Values Development

There are many reasons for teaching and using poetry in ESL language classroom. Some of the key reasons include the following:

73

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

poem provides enjoyment some poems are amusing and entertaining the reading and recitation of poems helps to develop confidence in using English reciting poetry encourages the use of correct stress and intonation in English speech poems help to develop interest in words and word usage in new ways to achieve certain effects poems helps to introduce new vocabulary and word order poems present the use of ordinary words in new ways helps to sharpen pupils senses and appreciation of language the rhythm and repetition in poems helps pupils to remember and memorise them easily poems help to expand students knowledge about the world poems help students to identify with people and situations poems express moods familiar to pupils poems give insights into pupils and their feelings
(Adapted from Wario, L.H.(1989).Ways of Teaching Primary English. London and Basingstoke: MacMillan)

4.3.2 Criteria for Poetry Selection

Lets think about this...

74

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Which poetry genre(s) would attract young learners? What topic would interest young learners? List at least 5 topics.

4.3.2.1

Learner Levels

Learner levels is the most important criteria that must be considered in the selection of a teaching learning material, in this case poems. Learner levels is also an important consideration in designing teaching learning activities. Much of this have been elaborated earlier in the section Readibility of Text. In selecting poems, a teacher needs to select poems that suit their students level in terms of text difficulty and language complexity (vocabulary, structure). The most basic children's poetry can sometimes too difficult for students in the rural areas. Hence, they might need to be adapted. 4.3.2.2 Cultural Considerations

Poems reflect culture and by using these poems can give your students the opportunity to acquire a better understanding of the culture of the target language. In choosing poems, you have to consider the following factors: Cultural Biasness Sensitivity to the impact of culturally-induced behaviour Familiarity to learners background knowledge The use words or expressions which are perceived as inappropriate, offensive or vulgar in the context of the students The poems must present the world through a childs perspective and focuses on lives and activities as well as on activities to which the child can relate. The expression of the ideas and feelings, however, must be unique, often causing the student to perceive ordinary things in new ways. The poem needs to appropriate to the experiences of a child and does not preach to them. If you decide that the 75

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

poetry is well selected, consider the illustrations and the appearance of the book. Beautiful illustrations do not ensure a good collection of poems within the covers. 4.3.2.3 Students Interest

Young children prefer narrative poems over lyric poems as compared to free verse and haiku. They also like humorous poems, poems about animals, and poems about enjoyable familiar experiences. Limericks are childrens favoured form. They also prefer poems that have pronounced sound patterns of all kinds, but especially enjoy poems that rhyme. Children prefer poems with regular, distinctive beats (rhythm). Generally, the elements of imagery and figurative language are not well received by young learners because it is not easy to understand poems figurative language.
(Source: Tunnell & Jacobs, 1999)

4.3.2.4

Other Considerations

There are different types and genres of poems you can choose from for use in the language classroom. In selecting poems for your students, the following factors could also be useful for consideration: rhyme, humorous narrative, and content based on familiar experiences enthusiasm declines as children get older favour contemporary over traditional poems use of minimal complex imagery and subtle emotion

Some other criteria that must also be considered when selecting the poems are: 76

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

poems that are lively, with exciting meters and rhythms, are most likely to appeal to young children. poems for young children should emphasize the sounds of language and encourage play with words. sharply cut visual images and words used in fresh novel manners allow children to expand their imaginations and see or hear the world in a new way.

poems for young children should tell simple stories and introduce stirring scenes of action. the poems selected should not have been written down to children's supposed level. the most effective poems allow children to interpret, to feel, and to put themselves into the poems. They encourage children to extend comparisons, images, and findings.

the subject matter should delight children, say something to them, enhance their egos, strike happy recollections, tickle their funny bones, or encourage them to explore.

poems should be good enough to stand up under repeated readings.


(SOURCE : http://homepages.stmartin.edu/fac_staff/belinda/poetry.html)

Nuttal (1982:25) outlines a list of criteria as guidelines for selecting a text for classroom use. These are: the readability of text the suitability of content the exploitability of the authentic text

The above selection criteria are discussed in the following sections.

77

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

A.

Readability of Text

Readability means that the text should be at the right level. When we try to find a readable text, we have to assess the level of its structural and lexical difficulty. Still, we should not forget that the students can deal with more difficult texts, provided the task is not too difficult (Nuttal, 1982). Readability is a measure of the comprehensibility of written text. In other words, it is the combination of lexical (i.e. vocabulary) and structural difficulty found in a text. There are some measures on readability that you can use to find out the difficulty level of the text for examples the SMOG index, the FRY readability estimate and Cloze Test (Nuttal,1982). In terms of readability of text, poems chosen should be at the right level of difficulty for your students. Therefore, select the ones that are appropriate at your students level of proficiency in terms of sentence length, word length within sentences and complexity of sentence structure. Sometimes, presentation factors unrelated to the language of the text also affect readability for example choice of text size, layout, illustrations and colours. The Table below shows three poems of three levels of difficulty and an analysis based on the criteria of text selection:

1. SIMPLE Apples, Peaches Apples, peaches, Pears, plums, Tell me when your Birthday comes

2. MORE DIFFICULT Sing Your Way Home Sing your way home At the close of the day. Sing your way home Drive the shadows away. 78

3. MOST DIFFICULT December Leaves The fallen leaves are cornflakes That fills the lawns wide dish, At night and noon

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

The winds a spoon Smile every mile, That stirs them with as For wherever you roam wish. It will brighten your road, The skys silver sifter It will lighten your load, A-sifting white and slow If you sing your way That gently shakes home. On crisp brown flakes The sugar known as snow

Verse 1 simple and short theme is easy few syllables repetition learners can say it over and over again, in a circle game.

Verse 2 longer lines more complex ideas imagery is easy to grasp rhythm helps learners learn it

Verse 3 December Leaves is about the same length as Sing Your Way Home metaphors are more complex imagery demands more of the reader a poem by literary definition

(Source: Pinnell,G.S. & Fountas, I.C. (2004).Sing a song of Poetry: A Teaching Resources for Phonics, Word Study, and Fluency.USA : Heinemann).

Avoid choosing poems which are too long and involved. Descriptive poems should be reserved for advanced students in the upper primary classes. Choose poems which are short because children, the younger they are, have very short attention span. The poems also need to have a clear message depending on the maturity level of rhe students. Students need to have the maturity of thought in order to understand more sophisticated themes. Avoid choosing poems with words outside the experience of your students. If you must choose a poem from distant cultures, then you must adapt it to the needs of your students.

79

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

B.

Suitability of Content

Suitability of content means that the text should be interesting and informative. The students preferences should not be neglected and a survey of their tastes might help the teacher quite a lot (Nuttal, 1982). Students interest is considered the first requirement you should take into consideration in poem selection. This can be developed through a regular and varied exposure to poetry, thus creating and sustaining students interest in this area. Poems should be carefully chosen. They must have some appeal and be interesting to read. You can help students to appreciate and understand poems better by providing illustrations via drawing diagrams or having collections of pictures which help them to visualize the content of the poems more meaningfully. The poem should be of interest to your students and perhaps amuse and entertain them (Wario, 1989). Below is an example of a poem that your students might find interesting:

I Taught My Cat To Clean My Room I taught my cat to clean my room, to use a bucket, brush and broom, to dust my clock and picture frames, and pick up all my toys and games. He puts my pants and shirts away, and makes my bed, and I would say it seems to me it's only fair he puts away my underwear. In fact, I think he's got it made. I'm not as happy with our trade. He may pick up my shoes and socks, but I clean out his litterbox. 80

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

The poem you choose must be relevant to the context in which students are familiar with and meet their needs and hopes. It should not overstretch students imagination. It should be related to your students experience, or be within their reach (Wario, 1989). Look at this poem. Is it relevant to your students? What would you like to be? Id like to be a farmer growing maize and wheat. Id like to be a mother and cook good things to eat. Id like to be shopkeeper with a lot of things to sell. Id like to be a childrens nurse and make sick children well. Id like to be a soldier and learn to march and shoot Id like to be a tailor and sew a dress or suit. Id like to be a policeman catching thieves at night. Id like to be a teacher and show to you how to read and write. C. Exploitability of the Authentic Material

Exploitability means that the text should facilitate the development of reading skills in order to help the students become competent and independent readers (Nuttal, 1982). A good selection of text is the one you can exploit in your teaching. In selecting poems, you are asked to use your own judgement on making the best choice of poems for your students. When you exploit poem, you make use of it to develop your students competence in achieving their learning outcomes.

81

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

The poem chosen should have a strong rhythm and also contain some repetition (Wario, 1989). Can you notice these two features in the poem that follows? Weve just been to Nairobi Weve just been to Nairobi. Tell us what youve seen. Bicycles and trains, Cars and aeroplanes. Weve just been to Nairobi. Tell us what youve seen. People standing, people walking. People standing, people talking! People doing everything! Weve just been to Nairobi. Tell us what youve seen. High buildings, clock towers, Trees, gardens and flowers. The poem chosen should tell a story and possibly be suitable for acting (Wario, 1989). Look at this poem. What story does it tell? Is it suitable for acting? What would you like to buy? I like to buy a bicycle And ride along the roads. Id like to buy a donkey To carry heavy loads. Id like to buy a blanket And put it on my bed. But Ive only got five pence piece So Ill buy a loaf of bread! Id like to buy a pretty dress And give it to my mother. Id like to buy a radio And give it to my brother. Id like to buy a new scarf And tie it around my head. But Ive only got ten pence piece So Ill buy a pen instead!

82

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

4.3.3 Techniques in Using Poems in the Classroom The following are some techniques you can employ in the language classroom using poetry: i. Marching to Rhymes ii. marching around the room while chanting a poem will help students feel the rhythm. Listening to Rhymes have students clap or snap their fingers when they come to a rhyming word. They can also say it softer (or louder)or mouth the word without making a sound. iii. Rhyming Cloze iv. read poems, asking students to join in only on the rhyming words. Put highlighter tape on the rhyming words. Poem Pictures after reading a poem aloud at different times of the day, have students make pictures to go with it and display them with the poem. Duplicate individual copies of a simple poem and ask each student to illustrate it. v. Word Endings write the poem in large print on a chart or on strips for a pocket chart. After many readings of a poem on a large chart, help students notice words that rhyme and specific vocabulary. They can use a masking card or highlighter tape to mark these words. vi. Poem Performances students can perform the poems after they learn them, sometimes adding sound effects with rhythm instruments such as sticks and drums or by clapping and snapping their fingers vii. Poetry Play

83

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

lead students in saying their favourite poems while they line up, as they walk through an area in which their talking will not disturb other classes.

viii.

Finger poems and Action Poems make finger plays from poems. Do poems with motions in involving the entire body.

ix.

Poem Posters use art materials(coloured and/or textured paper, pens, crayons, paints) to illustrate poems on charts for the whole group to enjoy, or individually in personal poetry books.

x.

Poem Puzzles have the students cut a poem into strips, mix them up, order them, and glue them on paper in the correct order. Then have them use art materials to illustrate the text. You can create a simple template to photocopy for many different poems.

xi.

Poetry and Prose take a poem and create a prose version of it. Place the two versions of the story beside each other so that the children can see and talk about differences in language, form, punctuation, mood etc.

xii.

Word Match place one line of apoem in the pocket chart and have students rebuild the line by matching individual words under the line. (Source: Pinnell,G.S. & Fountas, I.C. 2004).

4.3.3.1 Tips on Carrying Out Activities Using Poetry: Below are some tips on how to successfully carry out the above poems activities in 8.3.3: i. Reading Poetry Aloud to Children

84

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

The most important rule to keep in mind is that poetry should be read for its meaning. Stress the meaning elements of the poem just as you do when reading prose. Often, the words in poetry are phrased in such a way that you must continue past the end of the line before pausing. In other words, the breaks must be determined by the meaning units of the poem, not by the lines.

The first rule is that as a reader, you should not overemphasize the beat of the poem. Doing so results in an annoying singsong effect. The natural rhythm of the poem will be felt in a more interesting way if you avoid an unnatural, meaningless reading and let the poetic language provide the rhythm.

Poetry should be enunciated clearly. Each sound and each syllable of a poem are important and must be heard to be appreciated. This often means that you will need to slow down your normal reading pace to give full value to each sound.

Poetry needs to be performed and dramatized. Take some chances and try out different effects (using different voices, singing, shouting, whispering, pausing dramatically, and so on) as you read poems aloud. Your voice is a powerful tool. You may change it from louder to softer to only a whisper; you may start at a deep, low pitch and rise to a medium and eventually high pitch; you may speak very quickly in a clipped fashion and then slow down and drawl out the words.

Poems may need to be read aloud a number of times because their many meanings may be perceived only after the literal sense is known. Also, favourite poems can be enjoyed again and again, as you and your students savor one more reading. Another way to provide students with opportunities to listen to poems is by recording audiotapes of poems for the listening center and making them available along with the poem in print, on a chart or in a book for the student to listen to and read.

85

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Commercially made tapes with popular poets reading their works, accompanied by music, are available and are quite popular with children. After reading a poem aloud, some form of response is usually enjoyed. Sometimes the response students have to a poem is simply the desire to hear it again. Other times, students need just a few moments to reflect silently on the poem. Some poems warrant discussion, and students can take the opportunity to tell how the poem made them feel or what it made think about. ii. Choral Poetry

Choral Poetry is another technique you can employ in your language classroom. The following are some tips on the arrangement on how you can add variety to this activity: In unison choral speaking, the students learn the poem and recite it together as a group. Two-part or three-part choral poetry is usually based on arranging students into voice types (for example, high, medium, and low) to achieve different effects and by selecting lines of the poem for each group to recite or read. Solo voices can be added to either of these presentations and are sometimes used for asking a question or making an exclamation. Some poems lend themselves to cumulative build-up presentations. A cumulative build-up is affected by having, for example, only two voices say the first line, and then two more join in on the second, and then two more, gradually building to a crescendo until the entire class says the last line or stanza. Poems can be presented by simultaneous recitation, which forms a presentation similar to a musical round. In this case, group one begins the poem and recites it all the way through. When group one begins the third line, for example, then group two starts the first line, and the two groups

86

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

recite simultaneously until the end. Other groups can, of course, be added. Poetry selected and arranged for dramatic choral readings on a particular theme infuses an interesting variation into choral poetry. The poems can be read aloud by two readers at once, one reading the left half of the page and one reading the right half. At times, the readers read certain line simultaneously. Pairs of students may each take a different poem from the collection for presentation. iii. Learning to Write Poetry

After teaching your students about a kind of poetry, work with them during the writing process on developing motivations. Let them begin by sharing ideas. Have students compile personal and class anthologies of their own poems or their favourite poems. Design bulletin boards with poetry displays of students own poems as well as copies of poems by favourite poets. Let students rework a narrative poem into a different genre, such as a newspaper article or a letter. In turn, students may attempt the reverse- taking a newspaper article and putting it to verse. Suggest to students that they design posters, individually or in groups, to illustrate a favourite poem. Posters are then displayed around the school for a few weeks. Encourage students to model the works of professional poets by attempting imitation of a whole poem or of specific techniques. Read aloud many poems of one poetic form: then analyze the form with the students to reveal the characteristics of its structure. Quatrains, cinquanis, haiku, concrete poems, and limericks can all be used as models with students once they have an appreciation for poetry and for the specific poetic form. (Source: Tomlinson, T. M. & Brown, C. L. (2002)) 87

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

4.4

ADAPTATION OF SONGS The following section will focus on factors to consider when adapting

songs for use in the language classroom.

Lets think about this...


Sometimes we find ourselves in a position whereby we need to adapt some of the songs we would like use. List at least 5 reasons why we might need to adapt some of the songs.

You may have to adapt, simplify or reduce most carefully some of the poems chosen, to meet to the needs of your students. The following are factors of consideration in adapting songs: Lexical Items Sentence Structure Content

More practice...
Practice 1

5.

Identify the poems below according to their genres:


Alphabet / Limerick / Cinquain / Acrostic / Imagery / Haiku
A young girl was walking in the rain. But her umbrella didn't open. Couldn't run, couldn't hurry, Dressed in new shoes, Entered a house full of chocolates. Found all her friends enjoying them. Crisp and colourful Adorable and crunchy Nice and tasty Delicious and tempting Yummy and best

88

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

i. _______________________

ii. _______________________

'Penguins' Penguins Black, white Swimming, jumping, fishing All the penguins jump down into the water. Tall penguins
by Kenneth Miller

I'm the fairy of my garden My white wings and golden crown make me charming. I can weave magic with my magic wand. I'm the fairy of my garden.

iii, ________________________
'Night and Day' The stars are shining they will shimmer and they'll glow until the sun shines by Mattie M.

iv. _______________________

"There was an old man from Peru Who dreamed he was eating his shoe He awoke in the night With a terrible fright To discover it was totally true."

v. _________________________

vi. _________________________

6.

Using one of the poems in the previous task, decide on the class you are going to use for your language classroom. i. Think of a few activities to carry out based on the poem. ii. Justify your choice in terms of: - the selection criteria - the teaching learning purposes - your learners level - cultural considerations

89

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Practice 2

"The Broken-Legg'd Man" I saw the other day when I went shopping in the store A man I hadn't ever, ever seen in there before, A man whose leg was broken and who leaned upon a crutchI asked him very kindly if it hurt him very much. "Not at all!" said the broken-legg'd man. I ran around behind him for I thought that I would see The broken leg all bandaged up and bent back at the knee; But I didn't see the leg at all, there wasn't any there, So I asked him very kindly if he had it hid somewhere. "Not at all!" said the broken-legg'd man. "Then where," I asked him, "is it? Did a tiger bite it off? Or did you get your foot wet when you had a nasty cough? Did someone jump down on your leg when it was very new? Or did you simply cut it off because you wanted to?" "Not at all!" said the broken-legg'd man. "What was it then?" I asked him, and this is what he said: "I crossed a busy crossing when the traffic light was red; A big black car came whizzing by and knocked me off my feet." "Of course you looked both ways," I said, "before you crossed the street." "Not at all!" said the broken-legg'd man. "They rushed me to the hospital right quickly, "he went on, "And when I woke in nice white sheets I saw my leg was gone; That's why you see me walking now on nothing but a crutch." "I'm glad," said I, "you told me, and I thank you very much!" "Not at all!" said the broken-legg'd man. by John Mackey Shaw

1. Suggest THREE suitable activities and describe in simple teaching steps how you would carry out the activities using the poem. 2. Justify your choice of selection of both the poems and the activities based on the following: - your learners level - the selection criteria 90

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

the teaching learning purposes cultural considerations

Practice 3
Discuss and share your views 1. Browse through the internet and select one poem for each of the following groups of students: Students background A classroom of Year 3 low proficiency students in the rural area. A classroom of Year 5 high proficiency students in a SBT in Kuala Lumpur.

2. Suggest THREE suitable activities and describe in simple teaching steps how you would carry out the activities using the poem. 3. Justify your choice of selection of both the poems and the activities based on the following: - your learners level - the selection criteria - the teaching learning purposes - cultural considerations

91

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

References Cox, C.(2008). Teaching Language Arts: A Student-centered Classroom, (6thed). USA: Allyn & Bacon. Malaysian Primary Syllabus KSSR Syllabus Curriculum Specifications Nuttal, C. 1982. Teaching Reading skills in a foreign language . Oxford: Heinemann Pinnell, G.S. & Fountas, I.C. (2004).Sing a song of Poetry: A teaching Resources for Phonics, Word Study, and Fluency.USA: Heinemann. Showalter, E. (2002). Teaching Literature. Oxford: Blakewell Publishing. Wario, L.H.(1989).Ways of Teaching Primary English. London and Basingstoke: MacMillan Publishers Tomlinson, T. M. & Brown, C. L. Essentials of Childrens Literature Brown (2002) : Boston: Allyn and Bacon Tunnell, M. O., & Jacobs, J. S. (1999), Childrens Literature, Briefly 2 nd Edition: Prentice Hall

Websites: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/types-of-poems-for-kids.html http://www.gigglepoetry.com/poetryclass/limerickcontesthelp.html http://homepages.stmartin.edu/fac_staff/belinda/poetry.html http://www.teachingideas.co.uk/english/limerick.htm http://volweb.utk.edu/Schools/bedford/harrisms/limerick.htm

92

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

TOPIC 5

ACTIVITIES AND MATERIALS TO ENCOURAGE AESTHETIC DEVELOPMENT THROUGH SONGS AND POETRY

5.0 SYNOPSIS Topic 5 This topic intends to help course participants to select materials and design activities to encourage aesthetic development through songs and poetry . 5.1 LEARNING OUTCOMES By the end of Topic 5, you will be able to: To select and create activities and materials for the primary ESL classroom to suit learning outcomes To adapt activities and materials for different levels To select materials and conduct activities to encourage reader response

5.2 FRAMEWORK OF TOPICS

93

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

CONTENT 5.2 Activities and materials to encourage aesthetic development (3 Hours) 5.2.1 Selecting and Creating Activities and Materials to Suit Learning Outcomes Young learners will enjoy singing a song or reciting a poem which they could easily associate the content closely to their existing world knowledge, culture and tradition. Using songs and poetry to achieve the learning outcomes prescribed in the KBSR and KSSR syllabus for Malaysian primary schools requires the teachers to select appropriate materials and create relevant activities. Aesthetic values and fun element in language learning experience can be achieved if teachers plan their teaching points stage by stage to suit specific learning outcomes. To do this, teachers need to highlight the aesthetic elements in songs or poems and take into considerations criteria such as: Are the materials suitable and appropriate in every possible way? Do they possess any aesthetic values? If yes, what , type and level of aesthetics? If no, how to adapt the material to add this value? How does a teacher help instil and develop aesthetics among students? How to create activities in the lesson plan that connect and enhance this?

Imagine if you plan to use a poem that enables your Year 2 students to achieve the following learning outcomes: 1.1.3 Able to listen to, say aloud and recite rhymes or sing songs 2.1.1 Able to recognise and articulate initial, medial and the final sounds in single syllable words within given context 2.1.2 Able to blend phonemes into recognizable words and read aloud What you could do is to design an activity that requires the students to read and enjoy doing the designed tasks and at the same time appreciate the poem that they read. Lets have a look at the example below. 94

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Example 1: Using a poem Activity Class Level Theme Focused Skill Integrated Skills : Role Play : Year 2 : Beginning and Intermediate : World of Story : Listening : Speaking, Reading

In the following example, the basic idea of exposing onomatopoeia is to give children insights into themselves and imitate sounds familiar to them. Some students may be familiar with the sounds of fire crackles, water sizzles, crunching potato chips, tent poles cracking together, smoothing sleeping bag and cricket chirp. These sounds might evoke their inner feelings that camping is not a creepy moment or a terrifying event but they get to listen to different sounds in the surrounding at night. Camping Crack! Crack! The fire crackles under the stars. Sizzle! Sizzle! The water sizzles above the fire. Crunch! Crunch! The campers crunching on potato chips. Click! Clack! Click! Clack! The tent poles clicking and clacking together. Rustle! Rustle! As we prepare our sleeping bags to go to sleep. Chirp! Chirp! The crickets say, good-night. By Natasha Niemi
http://www.mywordwizard.com/onomatopoeia-poems.html

To promote appreciation of literariness of a poem does not mean the poem chosen has to be an established one. A simple start is students are put into groups. The teacher distributes the following poem to each group and asks them 95

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

to read the poem for 10 minutes focusing on the literary element which is onomatopoeia. Concurrently, the teacher could emphasize the initial and the final sound of /k/ in single syllable words such as crack, crunch, click, and clack as the students recite the poem. Learning sounds performed by specific verbs in a context, for example during camping, enables the students to relate their existing knowledge of sounds. In fact, the teacher could ask students to come up with their own other familiar sounds in the form of one syllable word too. Reading the poem at this stage gives the opportunity for the students to realise the first two learning objectives. After this activity is completed, each group is required to role-play the poem using precise voice projection and appropriate style. Role play gets the students to blend phonemes into recognizable words and read aloud the poem thus internalise the input on onomatopoeia exposed to them in the earlier stage. This activity subsequently leads the students to accomplish the third learning objective. So long as a teacher identifies certain aesthetic features of a poem which match with areas specified in the curriculum specification, then the poem could be used as the basis for a lesson which eventually increases students awareness of these features. In short, selection of relevant materials and appropriate activities designed by the teacher to suit learning outcomes not only enhances students aesthetic development but it is also a way to improve language knowledge.

96

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Tutorial Task Excercise 1 Read the following song and suggest one activity to enable young learners develop their aesthetic knowledge based on one learning outcome from the KBSR or KSSR curriculum specification. You are My Sunshine You are my sunshine My only sunshine You make me happy When skies are grey You'll never know dear How much I love you Please don't take my sunshine away. The other night, dear As I lay sleeping I dreamed I held you in my arms. When I awoke, dear I was mistaken And I hung my head and cried;
Lyrics and Music by Jimmy Davis and Charles Mitchell

97

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Excercise 2 Based on the learning standards from KSSR Year 2: i. Design one activity to teach this song ii. Get the students to change the lyrics below to create a new song from the old tune of Im a Little Teapot. I'm a Little Teapot I'm a little teapot, short and stout Here is my handle, here is my spout When I get all steamed up, hear me shout Just tip me over and pour me out! I'm a clever teapot, yes it's true Here's an example of what I can do I can change my handle to my spout Just tip me over and pour me out.
Poem by Betty Harris

5.2.2 Adapting Activities and Materials for Different Levels Students language proficiency is one of the principles that a teacher has to take into account when it comes to selecting materials to teach songs and poetry for young learners. It is crucial for the teacher to adapt existing poems or songs and design activities suitable for mixed abilities class for aesthetic development. Using existing materials can save time, effort and expense in acquiring language materials or materials for teaching or learning. However, adaptation of materials has to be done meticulously so that beginners do not feel awkward to read different texts compared to intermediate or advanced students. There is also a danger that they will instantly realise they have been labelled as weak or low proficiency students. In the case of developing aesthetic values among beginners, labelling affects their motivation to appreciate songs or poems given to them. Therefore, adapting materials should not be neglected by any teacher 98

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

in ensuring that none of the students in the class feels neglected. Here are examples of adapting a poem for a class with mixed abilities.

Just think about it Your low proficiency students may not realise that hill-Jill, down-crown and water-after are actually rhyme. How would you adopt this rhyme to encourage its aesthetic value among this group of students?

As a starting point for the class, the teacher could pre-teach difficult vocabulary such as the words went up, fell down, tumbling and crown to the low proficiency students. Then, the teacher can ask the students to sing the rhyme and share their experience with their peers. Integrating speaking and listening skills or even three language skills concurrently adds elements for dicussion in which students could associate their newly acquired classroom experience to the world of knowledge. As for the intermediate students, the teacher may use the following poem to challenge their existing knowledge.

99

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Jack and Jill Jack and Jill went up the hill To fetch a pail of water Jack fell down and broke his crown and Jill came tumbling after Up Jack got and home did trot As fast as he could caper Went to bed and bound his head With vinegar and brown paper

The teacher now divides the students into small groups and includes the low proficiency students in the groups. With the help of intermediate students , they now need to identify the sequence of what actually happens to Jack by drawing the list of event on a drawing block. Alternatively, the teacher may ask the whole class to copy down the first stanza and change the nouns in the rhyme to produce a new or nonsense version. Rewriting a new version encourages students of any proficiency level to engage with the poem and respond to it personally without worrying about getting the right and sensical meaning. Here is an example: Original Rhyme Jack and Jill went up the hill to fetch a pail of water Jack fell down and broke his crown and Jill came tumbling after New Version Jenab and Jojo went up the Kilimanjaro to fetch a kilo of laughter Jenab fell down and broke her crystal gown and Jojo came tumbling after

100

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

There are some key considerations for selecting literary texts before you could adapt available materials for different type of students. To summarise the criteria, you may use the checklist below by Lazar, G. (1993) :

Checklist for choosing literary texts TYPE OF COURSE Level of students Students reasons for learning English Kind of English required Length/intensity of course TYPE OF STUDENTS Age Intellectual maturity Emotional understanding Interests/Hobbies Cultural background Linguistic proficiency Literary background OTHER TEXT-RELATED FACTORS Availability of texts Length of text Exploitability Fit with syllabus

Selection of task or suitable activity to cater the needs of different levels plays a major role in ensuring that young learners enjoy and appreciate the aesthetic values of songs and poems. Teachers are encouraged to adapt and modify available materials to let the students see how poems and songs are structured and webbed together using literary and linguistic features.

101

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Tutorial Task Exercise 1 Look at the following song. You plan to use Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush tune to exploit specific language features. With what level of students do you think it could be used? Decide one literary feature in this song that can be exploited and design a suitable activity for your students.

This Is The Way This is the way we wash our face, Wash our face, wash our face, This is the way we wash our face, On a cold and frosty morning. This is the way we clean our hands, Clean our hands, clean our hands,

102

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Excercise 2 Adapt the poem Five Little Ladybirds to teach a group of beginners. Prepare one pre-activity, while-activity and post-activity based on the poem below.

Five Little Ladybirds Five little ladybirds, climbing on the door One flew away and then there were four. Four little ladybirds, sitting on a tree. One flew away and then there were three. Three little ladybirds, sitting on a shoe One flew away and then there were two. Two little ladybirds, looking for some fun One flew away and then there was one. One little ladybirds, hiding behind the sun One flew away and then there was none.
http://www.kidsfront.com/rhymes/five_little_ladybirds.html

5.2.3 Activities and Materials to Encourage Reader Response Songs and poetry guide readers to construct meaning based on their common daily experiences. Construction of meaning can be done by letting young learners respond to the text. To get learners voice out their responses, a teacher can ask them to write down what they thought about the text and discuss this idea in the class. This perspective is known as reader-response. It views that readers are actively engaged in the construction of meaning while reading a text. Carter (2007) argues that there is no single correct way of analyzing and interpreting the text, nor any single correct approach . Thus, how young learners make meaning from their own experiences with a text will make them eventually appreciate the aesthetic values of songs and poetry. Knowing how young learners respond is essential in using songs and poetry to encourage aesthetic development. Primary school students in Malaysia normally 103

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

respond to literary texts whenever they are engaged in activities that involve questioning, making association, explaining and performing. This is because answering questions, giving reasons and acting out the text given become the springboard for the young learners to move from understanding information in a text to appreciating and enjoying the content stated in the English language. Rosenblatt (1994, as cited in Cox, 2008) argues that children should take the aesthetic stance to enjoy and appreciate literary texts be it poetry, songs and even stories so that the importance of meaning and expressing feeling will not be reduced. Therefore, the role to allow students to construct the meanings and express their feelings precisely relies on the teachers. If students fail to comprehend the content of a text, they will not be able to provide necessary response no matter how much the teacher tries to explain the meaning of the songs or poems given to them. Here is an activity to use with students when exploiting a poem to encourage reader response. Read the poem below and do the following suggested activities. I taught my cat to clean my room I taught my cat to clean my room, to use a bucket, brush and broom, to dust my clock and picture frames, and pick up all my toys and games. He puts my pants and shirts away, and makes my bed, and I would say

a. Sing with actions b. Draw and colour the pictures c. Write a dialogue based on the poem d. Write your response for the following prompts (personalised questions): i. How would you feel if your pet could help you to clean your bedroom? ii. Has anything like this ever happened to you? Tell about it. iii. What else do you wish to happen in the poem? 104

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

iv. What would you do or say if you were the persona in the poem? v. Tell anything you want about the poem. There are numerous songs and contemporary childrens poems to teach colours, manners, animals, sounds and almost any concept that we can incorporate in the aesthetic development. classroom. Music can change the learning atmosphere in a According to Harmer (2007), music can amuse and entertain

students as it ...can make a satisfactory connection between the world of leisure and the world of learning in the classroom. Music and poetry can be interwoven in a lesson provided that the teacher selects suitable activities and marries it with language activities to enhance a childs inner development. The selected materials should be sufficient to cover activities that can be used to evoke reader response when they work individually, in pairs, in small groups and as a whole group. Aesthetic Development can be enhanced: A. Through various kind of activities Singing solo, duets, small groups, chorus Singing and Movement/ Dancing simple solo movements and gestures group movements / marching /variety Role-play drama, acting, miming Picturizations drawing, painting, colouring Cartoon creations - favourite scene or an entire story Handworks using play-dough, recycle things Games simple in-door / out-door games Music adding / adapting/ changing tunes Improvisation Readers Theater Make a puzzle depicting a scene or a character. Create a crossword puzzle based on the story. Create a scrapbook. 105

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

B. Through various language activities Cursive writing exercises Character identifying Word / picture match Reading tone, voice projection, style Story-telling Retell a story. Words-linking /poem puzzles, jigsaw Word-choices adjectives eg. good, clever Summarize song lyrics or a poem Write a review. Write a letter to a character. Literature Circles Compare and contrast characters from two texts Create an alternate ending. Reader Response Journal Create a book jacket. Create a poem about the text.

C. By Understanding a Childs Inner Development Expressions - emotions Physical behaviour & Mannerism Feelings / moods Idolizing wanting to be the hero / superhero Role-models teachers / others Interpersonal & Intrapersonal skills Character formation & development

When songs and poems are properly introduced to young learners, it will inevitably establish strong connections between enjoying literary style and responding to the text based on ones world knowledge. The choice of texts and

106

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

activities is crucial to make the difference between passive reading and active involvement with a literary text. Now that you have been given the list of activities to to encourage reader response and develop aesthetic values, try to do the exercises below.

Tutorial Task Excercise 1 Look at the outer look of this shape poem. Suggest one suitable activity to encourage the young learners to read and discuss the unique characteristics of this poem as well as its impact to the them.

A volcano. A huge rock, shooting lava up into the air! Everyone runs for cover. Lots of thick, black smoke pours out of the top, giving you a warning before the explosions start. Nothing can stand in its way. Sometimes they dont blow up for hundreds of years. Still thousands in the world but they dont all work, some are even underwater.
Source: http://www.mywordwizard.com/shape-poems-for-kids.html

Note: When students recite this poem and the teacher utilises the language content of the poem, it may evoke the emotion or feelings hidden in this poem. 107

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Excercise 2 Select a nursery rhyme / song Create a hand-made puppet using recycle items to represent a character found in the rhyme. Present to the class a brief reflection on your own emotional changes doing the puppet.

Exercise 3 Select/adapt a song and a poem for any level. Create activities based on the song and poem focusing on aesthetic development and reader response.

Surf the net. Search for more information on this topic.

Take a break and move on to topic 6 when you are ready!

108

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

References Carter, R. (2007). Literature and Language Teaching. 1986-2006: A review. International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 17, 3-13. Cox, C. (2008). Teaching Language Arts. A student-centred Classroom. (6th ed). USA: Allyn & Bacon. Harmer, J. (2007). The Practice of English Language Teaching . (4th ed). Essex: Pearson Education Ltd. Websites: http://firstgradecce.blogspot.com/2011/08/jack-and-jill.html http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/sites/teacheng/files/mixedability.pdf http://www.busyteacherscafe.com/literacy/readers_response.html http://www.teslcanadajournal.ca/index.php/tesl/article/viewFile/1091/910 http://exchanges.state.gov/englishteaching/forum/archives/docs/09-47-3b.pdf

109

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

TOPIC 6

LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT THROUGH SONGS AND POETRY

6.0 contribute to

Synopsis :

This topic introduces to course participants how songs and poetry language development. 6.1 Learning outcomes To select, adapt and create activities and materials for use in the primary ESL classroom for language development - listening, speaking, reading and writing through songs and poetry. To create activities for the development of vocabulary and grammar through songs and poetry. To adapt activities and materials for different levels.

6.2

Framework of Topic: LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT THROUGH SONGS 110 AND POETRY

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Selecting, adapting and creating activities and materials to suit learning outcomes

Adapting activities and materials for different levels.

Teach sound system, vocabulary and grammar

6.2.1 Introduction Children love singing. In fact, children grow up with songs and rhymes. They have acquired their mother tongue or first language by listening and reacting to nursery rhymes spoken and acted by their parents. According to Lo and Li (1998), songs are able to change the monotonous mood in the classand with the soothing effect of music, they provide a comfortable class environment for learning. Language teachers should therefore use songs and poetry as part of their teaching repertoire for language learning. 6.2.2 Benefits of using songs and poetry Songs and poetry can be used for a number of purposes and there are many reasons why songs and poetry can be considered valuable pedagogical tools (Murphy, T, 1992). The benefits can be summarised under two main categories: Linguistic: To enlarge the vocabulary background of children To develop pupils' listening and speaking skills To introduce and familiarize children with the target language culture 111

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

To improve children's pronunciation To teach various language functions To recall grammatical points To develop auditory discrimination Affective: To add fun to learning To motivate children to participate -- even shy ones To help teachers get closer to their children To stimulate children's interest in the new language To create a lively atmosphere in the language classroom Very young learners, as early as two- year olds (at times even younger than that) can recognise and respond to certain rhymes or simple nursery songs through their repeated listening. The simpler the songs/ rhymes and the beats are, the faster they are able to pick up the rhyme. That is why rhymes like one, two, three or a, b,c,d are able to attact the toddlers. We can witness these toddlers humming the tune or even uttering bits and pieces of these rhymes. The repetition of these rhymes of course helps them to remember better. Very simple gestures like clapping their hands or pointing their fingers to the nose also encourage their sense of timing. However, as they grow older they begin to lose interest in very simple forms of rhymes and would prefer more complex ones. They also prefer other forms of input to increase their knowledge and sustain their interest to learn. 6.2.3 Selecting, adapting and creating activities and materials to suit learning outcomes

112

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Criteria for selection and creation of activities and materials have been discussed in depth in the previous topics. An important aspect would be that these activities and materials are designed to suit the learning outcomes. It is important that the teacher knows what the learning outcomes are to enable him/ her to plan suitable activities and materials for the class. Criteria for selection of songs and poetry: Vocabulary within the level of the sudents ability Should present some musical challenge Rhythm should be straightforward and repetitive Topics should be within the experiences of the students Should contain language compatible with that used in the classroom Should allow for dramatisation, role-play and other enrichment activities

If the teacher would like the students to learn a certain sound-system or pronunciation, the teacher may probably pick a simple song like the one below. Although the song may not convey any proper meaning, it does not matter as the intention of the teacher is only to teach pronunciation and sound-system.

A Rum Sum Sum A Rum Sum Sum A rum sum sum, A rum sum sum. Guli guli guli guli guli rum sum sum. A rafi, a rafi Guli guli guli guli guli rum sum sum.

Try this : First sing the song. Give emphasis to the sound-system. Then change the tune to some of your favourite tune. Sing again. 113

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

If the students are of the ages 11-12, communicative speaking activities can be carried out. Communicative speaking activities require careful planning. Before doing any productive work, give students plenty of pre-reading activities so that they are adequately prepared. As a way into a poem, play some background music to create the atmosphere, show some pictures to introduce the topic, and then get students to think about their personal knowledge or experience related to this topic. They then talk about the poem, first with a partner and then in small groups, perhaps coming together as a class at the end to share ideas. Give brief feedback on language used and note any language problems to be dealt with at a later date. Prepare worksheets for pre-reading speaking activities which might involve a quiz, a questionnaire, sentence stems to be completed and discussed. The students might predict endings to verses, the whole poem/song, or events occurring after the end of the poem. Later, the students could talk about their personal response to the poem/song, discuss the characters and theme or debate the moral issues. If you've ever recited a nursery rhyme, played "Itsy-Bitsy Spider" or sung "If You're Happy and You Know It," you've been preparing the student for learning to read. Familiar songs and poems can strengthen a childs ability to hear the sounds of a language a skill that will serve him well when he learns to connect sounds with letters (phonics) in school. Learning how to make music and keeping rhythm are important listening skills. These activities teach children how to make sounds that are enjoyable and how to listen to them. Create a noise routine that can be choreographed into a children invent their own musical favorite song. Make it into a rhythmic pattern using claps, knocking, stomping and mouth noises. You can also help instruments by building objects out of things like boxes, strings, and pebble 114

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

shakers. Have the child play with all of the made-up instruments to explore the different sounds. Nursery rhymes are especially powerful, because they are so memorable. Research has found that children who are familiar with nursery rhymes often have an easier time learning to read. when they enter school This is probably because rhyming helps them discover many common word patterns such as those in quick/stick or down/crown. And the more familiar these patterns become in oral language, the more easily children will recognize them when they begin to encounter them in print.

Songs with rhyming lyrics are also terrific devices for teaching your child about the patterns of sounds. Create songs on the spur of the moment about whatever you are doing. Try "This is the way we wash our hands . . . " Remember that you don't need to have a good singing voice. Children will love it because it's fun. Combine rhyming with rhythmic clapping or movements. Select rhymes that are especially helpful for an active child who needs to involve his entire body in the activity. Students can follow directions when you sing songs like "The Hokey Pokey". This kind of play involves your child's whole body in absorbing the sounds of speech, which may make it easier for him to connect to the movement /motion with the words you say.

The Hokey Pokey You put your right hand in, You put your right hand out, You put your right hand in, And you shake it all about, You do the hokey pokey and you turn yourself around 115 That is what it's all about.

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

6.3

Adapting activities and materials for different levels. You can help children learn English as a second language by adapting

your lessons to their needs and enthusiasm. Use language suited to their age level and topics that interest them. Incorporate listening and speaking with games, action and music. Teach reading and writing by using a variety of techniques and activities.

6.3.1 Oral aural skills Listening to songs and rhymes are a part of oral aural skills. Songs and rhymes that teach certain grammar skills should be taken into consideration during selection. For example, the rhyme Hickory Dickory Dock can be used to teach the o sounds such as dock, down, clock and mouse. Students can also be trained to listen for specific purposes. For example, students can be trained to repeat letters and words to ensure correct pronunciation. In the rhyme above, words such as hickory, dickory and dock require correct pronunciation as well as enunciation to enable the rhyme to produce the correct sound. The "Jack and Jill" nursery rhyme is a fun way for young children to learn phonetic awareness. Focusing on the predominance of the letter "J," the teacher can show children how to write and pronounce "J. Teachers can also ask children to think of other words that begin with the "J" Jack and Jill sound Went up the hill To fetch a pail of water Jack fell down And broke his crown And Jill came tumbling after 116

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Activities such as sing alongs can help students to learn timing. Students will learn to sing on cue and learn to pause at appropriate junctures. As students sing along, it will increase their memory and they will remember the words that they have said out loud. Choral/ Chorus / small groups singing will teach students about turn taking as well as tone and pitch. Students can be divided into groups and asked to sing the song or rhyme. For example, in the rhyme Hickory Dickory Dock, each group can sing one line of the rhyme. The students will learn to sing their line as per turn and be silent when it is the turn of the other group. Learning rhythm and rhyme is an important pre-reading skill, Nursery rhymes, including "Jack and Jill" offer children an entertaining way to explore rhyme schemes and rhythmic awareness. Have children sit in a circle with their hands at their knees. The teacher can recite "Jack and Jill" while children clap their knees to the beat. The children can then discuss the rhyming pairs within the nursery rhyme. Have children think of other words that fit the rhyme scheme. The students can also learn to use different tones and pitch when singing the song in a group. Guided singing that makes use of lyrics and music can help the students to learn about melody and rhythm. Musical elements such as steady beat, rhythm, 117

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

melody, and tempo possess mathematical principles such as, sequencing, counting, patterning, and one-to-one correspondence. As such, students will be able to connect with numbers which will in turn help in their mathematic lessons. Dramatization can also help in language development. Students can act out the song in order to better understand it. Early childhood learning is a time for whimsical exploration. Using nursery rhymes, such as "Jack and Jill," allows children the opportunity to explore language and themes in a way they will enjoy and remember.

6.3.2

Literacy skills

There are various ways of using songs in the classroom. The level of the students, the interests and the age of the learners, the grammar point to be studied, and the song itself have determinant roles on the procedure. Apart from them, it mainly depends on the creativity of the teacher. Students will learn new vocabulary through activities such as word maze, crossword puzzle and jumbled up words. The nursery rhyme Baa baa Black Sheep teaches the students new vocabulary and this can be done through the usage of a crossword puzzle. Baa Baa Black sheep Have you any wool? Yes sir, Yes sir, three bags full One for my master and one for the dame And one for the little boy Who cries down the lane!

Surf the net. Search for more information on this subject matter. 118

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Grammar can be taught through filling in the blanks or word scrabble activities. For example, based on the rhyme Baa Baa Black sheep, questions such as Baa baa Black sheep, have you any _____________? can be asked. Words like black can be scrambled to lbcka and the students can be asked to unscramble them. 119

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Students from the ages of 10-11 can be asked to write a story based on the nursery rhymes that they have learnt. The story can be written in cursive writing which enhances their writing skills. In doing so, their confidence level will boost and they will also learn to present their new knowledge aestheticly. Below are some of the activities that may help in language development. You may want to try out some of these activities in class. Types of Activities reading/ writing Word search / maze / jumble Matching words / Joining words Fill in the blanks Words scramble / Boggle Make sentences / Cursive writing Story writing / Rewriting Vocabulary developments Grammar can be taught through filling in the blanks or word scrabble activities. For example, based on the rhyme Baa Baa Black sheep, questions such as Baa baa Black sheep, have you any _____________? can be asked. Words like black can be scrambled to lbcka and the students can be asked to unscramble them. Students from the ages of 10-11 can be asked to write a story based on the nursery rhymes that they have learnt. The story can be written in cursive writing which enhances their writing skills. In doing so, their confidence level will boost and they will also learn to present their new knowledge aestheticly. Below are some of the activities that may help in language development. You may want to try out some of these activities in class. Types of Activities reading/ writing Word search / maze / jumble Matching words / Joining words Fill in the blanks Words scramble / Boggle 120

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Make sentences / Cursive writing Story writing / Rewriting Vocabulary developments Jokes / Puzzle solving Types of Activities - Oral & Aural Listen to songs, rhymes Listening for specific reasons eg. for words, letters, pronunciation Sing along ( individual) Choral / Chorus / small groups singing Guided singing eg. with lyrics / music Changing or adapting lyrics Changing tones, pitch etc. Dramatization / Role play 6.4 Conclusion Songs and poetry are a valuable teaching and learning tool. Songs and poetry can help learners improve their listening skills and pronunciation; they can also be useful for teaching vocabulary and sentence structures. Songs and poetry combine the holistic, lingual and contextual approach with fun, activity and motivation (Dale, 1992). All teachers should see this big advantage and use songs and poetry as a part of their lessons for young learners. We need to reflect and act on what Shakespeare says in his famous play, Twelfth Night, If music be the food of love, play on. (Hardisty, 1993). If Shakespeare lived in the 21 st century, he would have fully agreed that music is not only the food for love but also a meal for language learning.

121

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

A sample Activity -

Label the Time Hickory Dickory Dock Hickory Dickory Dock The mouse ran up the clock, The clock struck * twelve The mouse ran down Hickory Dickory dock. (* one, two, ect)

To teach oral-aural skills : To teach Sound system - ( o sounds ) Eg. Hickory, Dickory, dock, down, clock & mouse Pronunciation & Enunciation 122

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Timing & Rhythm & Aesthetics Tone / pitch / Voice modulation Proper articulation of words / Vocabulary Numbers ( one, two.twelve) ( also connected to maths) Monday Grammar ( ran up, ran down) & repetition Today is Monday, today is Monday. Monday string beans. All you hungry children, come eat with it up! Words List - same sounds or and ending same alphabets Clock Mouse Today is Tuesday, today is Tuesday. eg. block house Tuesday spaghetti, Monday string beans. All you hungry children, come and eat it up! Today is Wednesday, today is Wednesday. Wednesday soup, Tuesday spaghetti, Activity 3 - older students Monday string beans. All you hungry children, come and eat it up! Write an imaginative composition. You are the mouse. Why are you going up and down the clock? Today is Thursday, today is Thursday. Write a short dialogue the clock Thursday roast beef,between Wednesday soup,and the mouse. Tuesday spaghetti, Monday string beans. All you hungry children, come and eat it up! Today is Friday, today is Friday. Friday fresh fish, Thursday roast beef, Wednesday soup, Tuesday spaghetti, Monday string beans. All you hungry children, come and eat it up! Today is Saturday, today is Saturday. Saturday chicken, Friday fresh fish, Thursday roast beef, Wednesday soup, Tuesday spaghetti, Monday string beans. All you hungry children, come and eat it up! Today is Sunday, today is Sunday. Sunday ice-cream, Saturday chicken, Friday fresh fish, Thursday roast beef, Wednesday soup, Tuesday spaghetti, Monday string beans. All you hungry children, come and eat it up! Ran man

Task : Group Discussion. How can you use the rhymes above (Monday) and the one below (This old123 man) for language development among young learners?

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

This old man This old man, he played one He played knick-knack on my thumb With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played two He played knick-knack on my shoe With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played three He played knick-knack on my knee With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played four He played knick-knack on my door With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played five He played knick-knack on my hive With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played six He played knick-knack on my sticks With a knick-knack paddywhack, give 124 a dog a bone This old man came rolling home

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

This old man, he played seven He played knick-knack up to heaven With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played eight He played knick-knack on my gate With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played nine He played knick-knack on my spine With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home This old man, he played ten He played knick-knack once again With a knick-knack paddywhack, give a dog a bone This old man came rolling home ********************************************************************************************* TUTORIAL TASKS Task 1 Select/adapt a song and a poem for any level Create activities based on the song and poem focusing on any language development sound system/vocabulary/ grammar/ language skills Dramatize the song /poem. Task 2 Select/adapt a song and a poem for any level Write out two activities that can be used for language development among young learners

125

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

A sample Activity References :

Label the Time

Cox, C. (2008). Teaching language Arts: A Student-centered Classroom, (6 th ed). USA: Allyn & Bacon. Dale, T.G. (1992). Songs in action. New York: Prentice Hall. Hardisty, D. (1993). Music lives- live music in the classroom. Modern English Teacher, 2(3): 53-55. Lo, R. & Fai Li, H.C. (1998). Songs enhance learner involvement. English Teaching Forum,(36): 8-11. Mitchell, Diana. (2003). Childrens Literature: An invitation to the world. New York: Pearson Publication. Murphy, T. (1992). Music and song. Hong Kong: Oxford University Press. Showalter, E. (2002). Teaching literature. Oxford: Blakewell Publishing.

126

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Malaysian Primary Syllabus KSSR Curriculum Specifications http://highland.hitcho.com.au/poemforms.pdf http://www.songsforteaching.com/nurseryrhymes.htm http://www.ijea.org/articles.html http://www.scribd.com/doc/80755012/Learning-from-Young-Children-Research-inEarly-Childhood-Music

TOPIC 7

LESSON PLANNING USING SONGS AND POETRY

7.0 SYNOPSIS Topic 7 highlights the key factors in lesson planning, cohesion in the development of stages, integration of skills using songs and poetry, and lesson evaluation. It is aimed to help you through the process of lesson planning and to know what constitutes a successful lesson. Good planning leads to good teaching and successful learning is the product of a well-planned lesson. 7.1 LEARNING OUTCOMES By the end of Topic 7, you will be able to: identify the key factors in lesson planning link the stages in lesson development plan and implement ESL lessons using songs and poetry evaluate the lesson plan (for its strengths and weaknesses) 7.2 FRAMEWORK OF TOPICS

127

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

CONTENT SESSION SEVEN (15 Hours) 7.2 Introduction

The key to good teaching, purposeful class management and the achievement of sustained educational progress lies in effective planning. Learning does not occur by chance. (Graham Butt, 2008) Every teacher who takes pride in his teaching will put in time and effort to plan his lessons well, regardless of his experience or status as a teacher. The effective teacher requires a sound understanding of pedagogical principles as well as the skills needed in planning and managing the lesson. In this section, you have to think about the lesson objectives, content, materials, sequencing, activities using songs and poems, and timing. You will need to refer to your scheme of work, the curriculum syllabus, a selected text or song that matches the needs of your students and some other materials as resources before you plan your lesson. You have to be selective in your choices of songs and poetry to suit the language needs of the students while fulfilling the requirements of the syllabus.

128

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

7.2.1 Key Factors in Lesson Planning Planning a lesson requires time and effort. If you want to be an effective teacher, you need to know your pedagogical principles, approaches, strategies, as well as the subject content of your area of expertise. Just knowing what to plan is not enough for any effective teacher, but knowing how to cater to the language needs of various groups of students of diverse abilities and levels of proficiency is the key to planning effective lessons. What you should know is how to plan an ideal lesson for your particular class. Lessons should be structured for maximum learning. For this purpose, lesson planning is based on a scheme of work which is essentially an overall plan for a term or half a term of the academic year for teachers to follow outlining the content, methods and resources that will be used to deliver the subject curriculum (Butt, 2008). A number of individual lesson plans are devised from this scheme of work to cover the specific sections of the national curriculum or specifications of the syllabus. Lesson planning is a skill that involves developing objectives based on a curriculum, or specified goals, and then sequencing a number of activities in which the teacher and students interact in the teaching-learning process. A good lesson plan usually consists of an assessment at the end to find out whether the aims or objectives of the lesson have been achieved. This feedback is constructive for the teacher to plan the next lesson so that there is continuity in the learning process. Before you plan your lesson, there are several considerations to take before the process of disseminating information and knowledge to your students can take place. The pre-planning stage requires you to think about: learners profiles (who your students are) syllabus requirements (what they need to learn from the syllabus) lesson outcomes (what lesson objectives you want to achieve) subject matter (what grammar focus or language input you want to give) integration of skills (which skill/s your students need to develop) selection of materials/ teaching aids (what type and which song or poem you want to select) the types of teaching and learning activities/techniques/approaches to use the strategies employed to induce collaborative and interactive participation First of all, you should know the profiles of your students and their abilities, and 129

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

decide on the level of difficulty of contents from the syllabus, select the appropriate type of songs or poetry to cater to their levels of proficiency and decide what approaches, strategies, techniques and skills you want to use in the lesson plan. Remember to pitch the input to the learners levels of abilities and different learning styles. Secondly, you need to write clear behavioural objectives or learning outcomes of the lesson. These should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timed-based. (Remember the acronym: SMART). The use of behavioural objectives serves as a criteria for a teacher to gauge whether he has been successful in achieving his teaching goal and also whether the students have been able to achieve the expectations of the learning outcomes. A well-constructed behavioural objective describes an intended learning outcome
and contains three parts, each of which alone means nothing, but when combined into a sentence or two, communicates the conditions under which the behaviour is performed, a verb that defines the behaviour itself, and the degree (criteria) to which a student must perform the behaviour. If any one of these three components is missing, the objective cannot communicate accurately. (Kizlik, B., 2004)

In other words, the three parts of a behavioural objective are: 1. 2. 3. Condition (a statement that describes the conditions under which the behaviour is to be performed) Behavioural Verb (an action verb that connotes an observable student behaviour) Criteria (a statement that specifies how well the student must perform the behaviour) (Kizlik, B., 2004)

Thirdly, you should select your activities, strategies, techniques and materials appropriately to match your learning objectives. Be ready to adjust or amend for improvement based on the feedback from students or colleagues. It is important that you ensure cohesion and continuity of contents and development of the specific or integrated skills in the progression of stages when you plan your lesson. Lastly, the format of the lesson plan is not fixed to a particular pattern. You can decide whether you want to use the conventional model of Set InductionPresentation-Practice-Production (PPP) model, or the skills-based model (Set Induction (Pre-) - Introduction- Development and Practice (While-) 130

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Consolidation/ Enrichment/Remedial (Post-) model). However, it is imperative that you remember to include key details in your plan while you decide on the most suitable format to use. Be comfortable to use either format according to your purpose and needs. Activity 1: Practise with a partner: 1. Write a behavioural objective each to teach the concept of numbers 1-10 to a Year Three class using a song. Share with your partner.

Summary: Factors that you need to remember to include in the planning process: profile of the target students (age, needs, capabilities, levels of proficiency) selections of syllabus items/ topics to be covered purpose of the lesson (aims, objectives and learning outcomes from syllabus) subject matter (knowledge, understanding and skills) integration of language skills methods of the lesson (strategies, techniques and activities to ensure learning) evaluation and assessment of the lesson (of student learning and teacher teaching)

7.2.2 Developing Lesson Stages The most important thing to remember is that you must ensure the cohesion (continuity or connection of ideas) in the progression of stages as you implement your teaching plan. This is to allow your students to grasp your teaching point step by step as you guide them through the stages until you achieve the desired or expected learning behavioural objective or outcome. You will need to plan how one activity leads into another and how the stages or parts of a lesson are linked. The rationale for this is to enable your students to identify when a stage ends and when another begins. You need to think carefully what to put into the stages of a lesson plan and how to get from one stage to another as smoothly as you can. The stages of a lesson plan comprise the following: Set Induction / Pre- (skill selected) Establish expectations /set the learning experience Presentation / While Introduction of topic / subject matter Practice / While131

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Focus on the learning experience hands-on tasks Production / PostReinforce the learning experience with extended tasks/ apply what they have learnt An example of how lesson stages are developed could be like this: Theme : Topic : Class : Proficiency leve : Duration : Focused skill : Integrated skills : Grammar focus : Learning objective: World of Knowledge Animals Year 3 Intermediate 60 minutes Writing Listening, Speaking and Reading Nouns- The young of animals To compose poems using at least one of the nouns taught within the stipulated time limit of 20 minutes.
Activities: 1) Teacher shows a video clip to the class and asks them some questions. 2) Students sing along as the lyrics appear on the screen. 1) Teacher shows a slide on Powerpoint with the picture of an animal and asks if the students know what the young of the animal is called. 2) Students respond to the slides shown. Practice (20 mins.) Nursery Rhyme :Mary had a little lamb Eg.:(adapted version) Cik Sitii had a furry cat, furry cat, furry cat, 1) Teacher instructs the students to write their own versions to the tune of the song Mary had a little lamb using their choice of the young animals just learnt. Video clip: Mary had a little lamb. Powerpoint pictures of tame animals and their young. *Activating the students prior knowledge and schema. Resources/Notes: Video clip from the You Tube (Nursery Rhyme: Mary had a little lamb)

Stages/ Time: Set Induction (5 mins.)

Contents: Nursery Rhyme: Mary had a little lamb Questions: 1) What is the song about? 2) What is the animal in the video called? Vocabulary: 1. sheep-lamb 2. goat-kid 3. cow-calf 4. hen-chick 5. dog puppy 6. cat kitten 7. duck-duckling

Presentation: (10 mins.)

132

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY Cik Siti had a furry cat, Its fur was furry light brown. Production (20 mins.) Presentations: Individuals sing their versions of the nursery rhyme (Random pick) Review: The young of animals learnt. Integration of moral value Caring for the young

2) Students compose their versions of the song and share with their partners. 1) Teacher selects or invites students at random to sing their versions aloud in front of the class. 1) Students recall the names of the young of animals shown earlier. 2) They sing the nursery rhyme in closure to the lesson.

Video camera/ I-Pad to capture presentations of the select few.

Closure (5 mins.)

* Enrichment /Remedial activities can be given as homework.

Discuss in groups of four: 1. Is the learning objective achieved? 2. Comment on the progression of skills, activities and content. 3. What do you think of the selections of contents and activities? 4. List the strengths and the weaknesses of this lesson plan. 5. Suggest some improvements that you would like to make to this plan.

7.2.3 Planning and Implementing the Lesson According to Lewis and Hill (1985), a lesson should have a beginning, a middle, and an end. The beginning can consist of a warm-up activity to catch the attention of the students or to arouse their curiosity. This can be just a question ( Where did you go for your holidays?) or a statement { Yesterday, something happened to me.) or anything that can arouse their interest and prepare them for the next stage and activity. The end can be a quick recap, a review, a comprehension check or a brief summary while the middle will depend on what you intend to teach and your approach to teaching. In each lesson, you will need to plan time to: 133

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

ask about and review previous learning present new language practise new language produce new language improve language skills

We also need to plan each lesson to include a balance between: teacher talking-time and student participation learning and practising both new and previously learned language listening, speaking, reading, and writing activites knowing about language and learning how to use it
(Baker and Westrup, 2000)

It is important to have variety and balance for effective learning. You need to have a good variety of learning experiences for the students learning process. This means you have to involve them actively to keep them focused and interested. Remember to plan activities which will allow the students to practise the language as much as possible. Some tips to motivate your students during the implementation of your lesson include: using students own opinions, ideas and experiences; encouraging student contribution and letting them speak or write without fear; giving positive praise; planning learning in easily achievable steps; recognising and openly acknowledging individual and class progress; making best use of learning opportunities, both in and out of the classroom giving attention to all the students, not favouring the best, or the loudest; carefully managing learning activities so that all students are involved, not just the quick and confident ones; making sure that any pair or group work benefits most of your class; encouraging all students and giving lots of praise, especially to students who are working hard and trying to improve, and students lacking confidence. Do not use negative words or a discouraging tone of voice.
(Baker and Westrup, 2000)

134

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Individual practice: 1) Devise a lesson plan using a song or poem to teach a class of intermediate Year Four students. - think about what you want to teach - think about the learning objectives - decide which skill/s you want to develop - select your song or poem to suit your subject matter - check the cohesion and development of your lesson stages - check the continuity and relevance of your activities and see if they match your learning objectives of the lesson - think of how you want to assess your lesson

7.2.4 Evaluating the Lesson Plan Evaluation is an important factor in getting feedback to improve lessons for the teacher. It tells how much the students have understood the concepts taught or how much they understand the instructional activities to achieve the expected outcomes of the lesson. To rate a successful lesson, students would be able to carry out the activities as planned in the learning outcomes or objectives of the lesson. According to Butt (2008), a lesson evaluation is not merely a descriptive account of class management or of events that happened in the lesson: rather it is a means of analysing/problem solving the ways forward for future teaching and learning. He reiterates that all aspects of the lesson planned and taught should be evaluated and improvements to be made in future lessons. Lesson evaluation is central to a teachers professional development. The key to effective lesson evaluation (on whatever aspect that is being evaluated) is professional judgement made according to agreed standards. Basically, the process of lesson evaluation can be illustrated below:

135

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

review

plan

do
Figure 1: Process of lesson evaluation

The overall aim of a lesson evaluation is to measure what learning experiences worked for you and what did not. This feedback is essential because it gives you important information on how much the students have learnt and what you need to focus for future lessons.

In relation to evaluating lesson plans using songs and poetry, you must employ the appropriate assessment strategies to evaluate student performance which are as varied as the tasks to which students are assigned. A successful lesson is usually measured by the ability of students to carry out the instructional activities and learning experiences and achieve the learning objectives desired. Some of the common strategies used in assessing student performance are: questions reflections presentations oral interviews simulations of activities worksheets /handouts observations (during/after) oral and written descriptions

136

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

You will have to select the appropriate assessment tool to evaluate the effectiveness of your lesson. What is important is that you should consider how you will monitor the performance and progress of your students during the lesson itself. This is essential in helping you as well as your students identify the strengths and weaknesses in your planning as they learn and to help them improve in those areas in future lessons. The following checklist of questions may be useful to you:
1. Aims and objectives 2. Methods 5. Resources Were the aims/objectives wholly or partially achieved? Did you manage to cover the content of the lesson? Could the students understand and use the contents/skills/knowledge you introduced? What do you think they actually learnt? What did any assessment show? Question and Answer technique Visuals & OHP ICT Individual, Pair work, Group work Games, Role plays, Simulations Practicals Was the start and finish of the lesson orderly? Was the change of activities orderly? Were students organised into effective learning groups? Were instructions clear? Was a good learning atmosphere created? Was the preparation of resources sufficient? Were interruptions dealt with effectively? Type and use of reward/praise (smile/ look/encouragement) Tone and approach adopted towards class and individuals Use of boards, textbooks, worksheets, OHP, ICT Were the resources used effectively? What should be planned next? Revise/ review/ or teach something new? Marking of books and feedback Specific targets for next lesson
(Source: Butt G. (2008). Lesson Planning. London: Continuum)

3. Management

4. Control and discipline

6. Follow-up

137

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY Figure 1.1: A framework for lesson evaluations It is recommended that you use the above checklist when you plan and that you make it a habit to reflect after each lesson to gauge the degree of its effectiveness. Note the problems and constraints encountered and think of solutions or ways to overcome each challenge. Plan wisely and realistically for the benefit of all.

In conclusion to this chapter, it is good practice for teachers to plan their lessons before they teach. Whatever form a lesson plan takes, it is an important tool that can help teachers make decisions, solve instructional problems, deal with classroom management issues, record progress, and be accountable to peers or supervisors.

Practice makes perfect!


Simulated Teaching (Groupwork) In groups of three, plan a 60-minute lesson using either a song or a poem to teach a class of mixed-ability students. Do the following: 1. Discuss drafts of your lesson plans in your groups and revise areas that need improvement. 2. Select and prepare support materials for your lessons. 3. Check for language errors and cohesion of contents. 4. Use the checklist to evaluate your lesson plans. 5. Carry out a simulated lesson in your groups and get your peers to give you the feedback first before getting the final or overall feedback from your lecturer.

References Baker, J. & Westrup, H. (2000). The English language teacher's handbook: How to teach large classes with few resources. London, UK: Continuum.

138

TSL3102 SONGS AND POETRY

Butt, Graham. (2008). Lesson Planning: 2nd edition. Chennai: Continuum Publishing Services. Kizlik, B. (2004). Five Common Mistakes in Writing Lesson Plans (and how to avoid them ). At http://www.educationoasis.com/resources/Articles/five_common_mistakes.h tm Huraian Sukatan Pelajaran Bahasa Inggeris SK Tahun 3. (1998). Kurikulum Bersepadu Sekolah Rendah, PPKKPM.

139