SONG PIECES is back! By using various short song extracts, it injects fun to English language classes. It also works perfectly with online students creating interaction and collaboration between them to identify specific things in the lyrics, in a light yet memorable way.

SONG PIECES is fast-paced, and it provides extra energy and fun at any moment the teacher needs: Review, warm-up, consolidation, or as a simple reward activity

Description: In this ELT song-based activity, students work in teams (or individually), listen to 7 different short song extracts, and identify different grammar structures and vocabulary in each one.

Language level: all levels
Learner type: All ages
Skills: listening and writing
Topic: varied
Language and grammar (possible options according to your class level):  
Present continuous, adverbs of frequency, parts of the house, 
irregular comparatives and superlatives, days of the week, 
numbers, places in the city,weather words, adjectives, 
parts of the body, past continuous, food, modal verbs, possessive pronouns
Materials: edited mp3 files for the songs used 
Duration: 20 - 30 minutes
Downloadable materialsinstructions; Song Extracts (mp3 files)


Step 1

Divide students into pairs or trios (it can also be done individually, depending on the number of students), and tell them they are going to listen to various extracts of songs and in each one they have to listen to different things and write them down on a blank sheet of paper.

Step 2. 

Before playing each extract, say what you want the students to listen to and make sure they know it. In order to do that, ask them if they can give you examples of the words they must listen to. 

Example: Students, in this first extract, you have to listen to a frequency adverb! Do you remember what this is? Give me some examples.

Step 3

Tell them they have 3 chances to try to get the right word. Then, play the first extract 3 times and they write down the answer for number 1.

Step 4

Check what the teams wrote down (you can use the chat feature of the application you’re using with your online students. ex: in-meeting chat in zoom , and ask them to use it to send you the answers.  Assign points. (1 for each right word, if there is more than 1 word in the recording) 

Step 5. 

Repeat steps 2, 3, 4 for the next song extracts. The team with more points, in the end, is the winner!


(OBS: choose ONLY ONE of the suggestions for each song, according to your class level – of course, you can choose more – it all depends on your students)

SONG EXTRACT 1 (Dua Lipa - Break My Heart)
1-   2 sentences with the present continuous (I’m falling, Are you falling?)
2- numbers (one, a hundred million)
3- adverbs of frequency (always, never)

“I've always been the one to say the first goodbye 
Had to love and lose a hundred million times
I Had to get it wrong to know just what I like
Now I'm falling 
You say my name like I have never heard before
I'm indecisive, but this time I know for sure
I hope I'm not the only one that feels it all
Are you falling?”

SONG EXTRACT 2 (Robin Schulz - In Your Eyes)
1- a sentence in the present continuous (we’re breaking)
2- weather words (thunder, lightning, storm)
3- adjectives (dark, calm, alive)
4- part of the body (eyes)
5- something people use to cook (fire)

And now there's nothing left to lose
So we're breaking all the rules
And they don't know what we know
'Cause I can hear the thunder from afar
A lightning in the dark
I can feel a fire come alive
So calm before the storm
So dark before the dawn
Oh, I can see the fire in your eyes
In your eyes

SONG EXTRACT 3 (Powfu - Death Bed)
1- days of the week (Sundays, Mondays)
2- part of the house (kitchen)
3- comparative (younger)
4- places in the city (park, church)

I'm happy that you're here with me, I'm sorry if I tear up
When me and you were younger you would always make me cheer up
Taking goofy videos while walking through the park
You would jump into my arms every time you heard a bark
Cuddle in your sheets, sang me sound asleep
And sneak out through your kitchen at exactly 1:03
Sundays went to church, on Mondays watched a movie
Soon you'll be alone, sorry that you have to lose me

SONG EXTRACT 4 (Alicia Keys - Underdog)
1- adverbs of frequency (sometimes, never)
2- past continuous (was walking)
3- adjectives (nameless, hopeless)

She was walking in the street, looked up and noticed
He was nameless, he was homeless
She asked him his name and told him what hers was
He gave her a story about a life
With a glint in his eye and a corner of a smile
One conversation, a simple moment
The things that change us if we notice
When we look up, sometimes
They said I would never make it
But I was built to break the mold
The only dream that I've been chasing is my own

SONG EXTRACT 5 (Justin Bieber - Intentions)
1- part of the house (kitchen)
2- food (bread)
3- negative sentence (You don’t need)

Picture perfect, you don't need no filter (No filter)
Gorgeous, make 'em drop dead, you a killer (Oh)
Shower you with all my attention (I will)
Yeah, these are my only intentions (Yeah)
Stay in the kitchen, cooking up, got your own bread (You do)
Heart full of equity, you're an asset (Uh huh)
Make sure that you don't need no mentions (No mentions)
Yeah, these are my only intentions

SONG EXTRACT 6 (Justin Bieber 10,000 Hours)
1- a question (what are you dreaming?)
2 - a number (10,000)
3- possessive pronoun (yours)
4- modal verb of probability (might)

When you close your eyes
Tell me what are you dreaming?
Everything, I wanna know it all
I'd spend 10,000 hours and 10,000 more
Oh, if that's what it takes to learn that sweet heart of yours
And I might never get there but I'm gonna try
If it's 10,000 hours or the rest of my life
I'm gonna love you (Ooh)
I'm gonna love you

SONG EXTRACT 7 (Justin Bieber - That’s What Love Is)
1- comparative (better)
2- superlative (best)
3- parts of the body (hands, eyes)
4- abstract nouns (greatness, patience, love, lust, blessing, life) 
EXTRA HARD! (DOUBLE POINTS if you use this one)

I reach out to you
But my hands can't hold enough
Enough of your greatness
You teach me patience
Like the best of our worlds collide
Never understood what it meant
It meant to submit to love
So beyond what lust is
Hey, it's a blessing that you're in my life
Make me look even better
When we shine, we shine together
Yeah, that's what love is
Now, that's what love is
Don't nobody else deserve my eyes

CHECK OUT previous posts with activities just like this one: 

These song-based lesson plans are 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! 


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Happy teaching!  🙂


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