SAF’S Top Ten Songs for Conversation Classes – Teaching English with Songs!


There are some memorable and RARE times in life when a song writer manages to craft a beautiful song with DEEP MEANING translated in the lyrics, AND to top it off, someone else makes a great MUSIC VIDEO for it. When this magic happens you end up with the perfect material to ENGAGE and MOTIVATE your students to SPEAK!

On this list, I’m counting down 10 of my FAVORITE SONGS that make up for hours and hours of pure SPEAKING MAGIC.

I’ve been using some of them since I started teaching in 1993, and they’ve never failed to get my students fired up, CURIOUS and TALKATIVE!

Here are


10 – I need to wake up – melissa Etheridge

At number ten is the Academy award winner for 2006’s Best Original Song! Its captivating lyrics remind us that we need to care for our planet and face the consequences of our acts.

9- Stop Crying Your Heart Out (Oasis)

Depression, suicide, friendship, hope and despair…Tough themes and the ending of the music video may be a little shocking if you pay attention to the details…

8 – Dear Mr. President (Pink)

Politics, gay marriage, homelessness, war… This was Pink’s open letter to the then-president George W. Bush but it is still relevant today.

7- One Last Breath (Creed)

Death, love and what happens after you die, religion, symbols all mixed up in a great music video!

6 – Handlebars (Flobots)

Oppression, peace, war, big brother, friendship, politics, power, symbols… lots to talk about here with an incredible music video telling the story of two friends who take different paths in life.

5 – Fake Plastic Trees (Radiohead)

Are we living in a fake and superficial world? Do some people try so hard to fit in and “crack”? A great song and a video that complements it.

4 – Rocket Man (Elton John)

Fame, alcoholism, drugs, immigration… There’s plenty of room for discussion. A song from 1972 that continues brilliant and relevant as ever.

3 – Carry You Home (James Blunt)

Is he singing about someone with cancer? Is it about a bad relationship? Is it about the war? Get your students crazy before showing the music video… Great lyrics always have multiple interpretations

2- Losing My Religion (REM)

This masterpiece won 2 Grammy awards and is always a hit with students! So many interpretations… is he a stalker? Is he gay? Show the music video only in the end, it will add more layers to the whole discussion! 

1- Tears Of The Dragon (Bruce Dickinson)

This is NO  DOUBT, my favorite song EVER for conversation! Facing fears… and all the symbology about ice and cold… the magical connection between lyrics and video and the ultimate question: Why is the dragon crying? I’ve got my personal views on it. WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT IT? Also, WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE SONGS FOR CONVERSATION CLASSES?  Comment below!

The Song Activity Factory presents:

TIME-SAVING eBook that does 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 you all LOVED this list and feel inspired to try out some of them in your classes!




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  1. Thanks so much! This is great if I know the themes of your worksheets up front!


    On Thu, Jul 16, 2020 at 5:38 PM Song Activity Factory wrote:

    > Márcia “Mars” Bonfim posted: ” Check out the VIDEO WITH THIS TOP TEN! > There are some memorable and RARE times in > life when a song writer manages to craft a beautiful song with DEEP MEANING > translated in the lyrics, AND to top it off, someone else m” >


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