Teaching English with Songs: Ronan Keating, Emeli Sandé – a Lesson Plan for ELT


This song-based activity lesson plan for English language teaching features the song lyrics and music video for  “One of a Kind” by Ronan Keating and Emeli Sandé. Students talk about the title of the song, guess the genre and rhythm, do a matching exercise with paraphrased sentences and verses from the lyrics, listen to the song and put the verses in order, watch the music video and talk about it

Language level: B1 and above
Learner type: All ages
Skills: speaking, reading and listening 
Topic: Music and paraphrasing
Language: Vocabulary related to music, expressing opinions 
Materials: Youtube video, worksheets and mp3 file
Duration: 1 hour - 1h 30 min
Downloadable materialsinstructions; lyrics cut out worksheet;
 paraphrasing worksheet; song mp3

PART 1 – Warm-up / Intro

Step 1

Write the title of the song on the board and have students work in pairs to guess what kind of song it is eg. fast, slow, happy, sad, rap, rock, etc. The pairs must come up with reasons for their guesses. Give them a couple of minutes to discuss.

Step 2

The pairs share their ideas with the whole class.

Step 3.

Play the mp3 file for students to check their guesses. And have them say if the song surprised them or not, why and also what they thought of the song.

PART 2 – Paraphrasing

Step 4

Divide students into small groups. Hand out the group sets with the cut-out lyrics. Tell them the numbered pieces are parts from the lyrics of the song they’ve just heard.

Step 5. 

Hand out the paraphrasing worksheet – one per group. Explain that the sentences in the worksheet are paraphrases of the numbered pieces. Their task is to match them (a-n) to the numbered song pieces (1 – 15) Obs. one number is not going to be used (6).

Give the groups some time for the task

Step 6.

Check their work by having different students read the song pieces and their correspondent paraphrasing.

Paraphrasing. Answer key:
a4 b1 c2 d3 e15 f8 g11 h7 i9 j5 k14 l13 m10 n12

 PART 3 – Ordering the lyrics

Step 7

Tell the groups they are going to listen to the song and put them in the correct order. Play the song twice or more, if necessary. You can have this as a competition to see which team gets the order right first.

Lyrics Right order: 
2, 13, 1, 10, 11, 3, 5, 4, 12, 9, 7, 14, 15, 8, 6

Step 6 

Ask students, still in their groups, to talk about the meaning of the song. After some time, have them share their conclusions. Ask other groups if they agree/ disagree, have a class discussion.

Step 7 

Play the music video of the song and have students comment on it to close the activity

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!  🙂

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