Get Students To Practice Writing With A Song: Email Feelings + Song Lottery [Sasha Sloan]


This ELT song activity is based on the song “Older” by Sasha Sloan and its official music video. Students talk about family, play a song lottery game, watch a video and write an email.

Language level: B1 and above
Learner type: All ages
Skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing
Topic: family
Language: Vocabulary related to family, expressing opinions and writing e-mails
Materials: Youtube video, worksheet pdf, and mp3 file
Duration: 1 hour - 1h 30 min

Downloadable materials:  instructions; song lottery worksheet; song mp3

PART 1 – A PERFECT FAMILY? (Pairwork discussion)

Step 1. Start by asking the whole class:

Is there such a thing as a ‘perfect” family? Does this exist? What would a perfect family be for you?

Have students discuss their ideas in pairs (about 2 min) and then share the answers with the whole class, have everybody participate by asking other students if they agree/disagree and why.

PART 2 – SONG LOTTERY (reading)

Step 2. Tell your students they are going to work with a song in which the singer sings about her family problems, and that in the first part of this activity they are going to play a “song lottery”! In this lottery, instead of choosing numbers, they are going to choose the words they think the singer will sing.

Step 3. Hand out the song lottery worksheet and give the students some time to choose their ‘winning words”. They should fill out their lottery tickets and cut them out to give you before you play the song to check the winner (s) of the lottery.

Step 4. After everybody has handed you their tickets, play the song and students check if their choices were the right one. The winner of the lottery is the one who guessed all the words right! (you can stipulate a prize for the winner eg. a chocolate candy bar, candy, etc. If nobody wins, you can tell them the prize will be accumulated for the next song lottery in one future class!

ANSWER KEY (winning words)

01. screamed 02. right 03. swore 04. a kid 05. the more 06. heroes 07. loving 08. mad 09. better 10 wonder


Step 5. (whole class) Ask students to tell you what they think the music video for the song is going to be like. Get some answers, then show them the music video for “older” by Sasha Sloan

Step 6. Ask the students if the video was the way they imagined and tell you what they thought about it.

Step 7. (writing an email) Tell your students to imagine they are the singer and write an email to her parents translating the feelings in the song into written words.

Variation: Students imagine they are the singer’s parents and write an email to her in reaction to the song.

This song-based lesson plan is sure to spice up your classes! However, would you like to think, feel and act more creatively on your own to be able to turn ANY song you want into an engaging lesson plan?
HERE are TIME-SAVING ideas that do the heavy work so you can focus on the most important: INSPIRING and MOTIVATING YOUR STUDENTS to learn CREATIVELY!


That’s it for this week! I hope this activity is helpful and enjoyable! 


SUBSCRIBE to SAF’s FREE MUSIC CHANNEL (Copyright Free Music for Teachers!)



Happy teaching!  🙂


  1. I believe in the power of songs n teaching English. I have taught the songs in Mountains of Things by Tracy Chapman for a school year in1988 and I still retain them and so do my students ;l am sure some of those students still sing them.

    Liked by 1 person

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