Archive for June, 2009

As promised last time, another song.

(Note: I do not like the Killers.  They are definitely not my thing.  Apart from the fact that $4MT has had a strong hip-hop/R&B bias in its musical slant, I should note that the Killers for me are well on their way to dethroning U2 for the post of Most Overrated Rock Band.

But I had another special request from a student who said it was his favorite song.  He just wanted to know what the words were.  Luckily, I was able to extrapolate a slightly more relevant teaching point than just “What’s he sayin’?”, being that there’s a ton of little phrasal verbs and what not to be picked apart.)

There’s two parts basically to this worksheet.  You may or may not want to fold it neatly in half before giving it to the students.

Mr. Brightside song activity (MS Word doc, 22 KB)

 1. Start with the words from the first part on two columns on the board and elicit combinations.  They don’t have to correspond to the ones used in the song.  Get students to give you example sentences for each combination.  Do a little mime game if you want.  All that good stuff.

2. Then students listen to the song and fill in the blanks.  Then after that you can ask them what the hell this guy is talking about.  For example, what the hell is “turning saints into the sea” supposed to mean?  (Personally, I can’t stand this sort of pretentious fake-poetry rock lyrics.  Another example from a Killers song, “Are we human or are we dancers?”–um, you’re probably both, idiot.  But I digress.)

After you’ve got at least one or two possible ideas, show them the video.

Elicit what they think the situation is–how are the singer and the girl in the video related, etc., etc.

As a writing exercise, have Ss choose to be either the singer or the girl in the video.  They must write a diary entry about what happened to them in the song, starting like this: “Last night, I went to a party and…”


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I’m back!  What?! What y’all know about that? What?! What?!

Oh, ahem.  Hi, hello there.  I’ve not been doing much posting as of late.  To make up for that, I’m gonna try to double up here.

As things wind down to a close and the kids finish their schoolwork and take their exams, we’re left in a bit of a lull until the actual end of the course.  And of course, the people want songs.  Songs, songs, songs.

So here’s one.  It’s related to sports and sports vocabulary.  It’s “We Like Sportz” by the Lonely Planet, from their album Incredibad. It’s kind of hilarious.  Could be appropriate for that unit related to sports in your typical pre-intermediate/intermediate level.  The “cheating sux!” line goes perfectly with Unit 1C from New English File Intermediate, for example.

It starts with a little vocabulary word-map / brainstorming activity.  Then there’s a listen-and-tick-the-things-you-hear joint.  Then you got a little correct-the-rhyme-scheme, then-listen-and-check joint.  Then a little fill-in-the-blank action.  Then some discussion activity type flavor–do a “Why? Why? Why?” game in pairs, then talk about it together as a group.

We Like Sportz (MS Word doc, 36 KB)

And here’s the video:

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