You love MUSIC and you know the power songs have to MOTIVATE students. You also know that it takes TIME to find a good (and NEW) song and prepare an activity to meet your needs. Here you will find fun IDEAS, practical STEP-BY-STEP LESSON PLANS and useful RESOURCE MATERIALS that SAVE you time (and HEADACHES). I hope that you and your students have fun with this lesson plan!!



This song-based activity STEP-BY-STEP LESSON PLAN  for ENGLISH language TEACHING features the lyrics and music video for “CARDIGAN” by TAYLOR SWIFT. Students PLAY a hangman game with a phrase or TALK about a quote from the lyrics, WATCH a vocabulary video with words and phrases from the song, MAKE sentences using the new vocabulary about pictures, SPECULATE on the music genre based on a word cloud, do a  JIGSAW VIEWING with the music video, WRITE a short narrative about the video, READ other students’ narratives in a collaborative Google Doc, and  DO a listening exercise with an interactive worksheet.

OBS: OBS: This lesson plan was made to be used for ONLINE TEACHING, but it can be modified for face-to-face instruction, as well.

Language level: B1 and above
Learner type: All ages
Skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing
Topic: dating & relationships
Language/grammar: narrative sequencing, agreement/disagreement
Materials: Youtube videos (music video and vocabulary video), 
google slides, collaborative google doc and interactive worksheet.
Duration: 1 hour or so
Downloadable materialsinstructions;google slides;
collaborative google doc(for you to make a copy).


Step 1 (5 min) 

OPTION 1: Play hangman with the phrase “I LOVE MUSIC”

OPTION 2: Show the following quote from the lyrics and ask students if they agree/disagree and why.

“When you are young, they assume you know nothing”

Step 2 (3 min)

Tell your students that you’re going to work with a new song, but first, you are going to play a video with some vocabulary from it. 

Play the vocabulary video twice.

Words and phrases on the video:
vintage tee - high heels on cobblestones sequin - cardigan - playing 
hide-and-seek - the high Line - scars - haunt 

Step 3 (5 min)

Show slide 1 with the words and the pictures.

Students make sentences connecting the words and the pictures, and send them via chat box. Tell them to make crazy connections!

Step 4 (5 min)

Show the slide with the word cloud.

Have students say if they can identify which song you are going to work with.

Ask them to say what kind of song they think it is based on the words

Step 5 (7 min)

Jigsaw viewing

Divide the class into two groups, A and B. Group A stays in the main room with you to watch the music video.

Group B goes to the breakout room and waits.

Tell Group A to pay careful attention to the music video because they are going to retell the story to the others.

Step 6 (12 min)

Group B comes back to the main room.

Now pair students from each group: Student A+ Student B in breakout rooms. Student A retells the story from the video to student B who types it on a notepad or word doc.  Give them a time limit of 10 min for the task.

Step 7 (10 min)

Back to the main room, share the link to the collaborative google doc with the designated spaces for the pairs to paste their texts.

Students read all the narratives. Highlight the mistakes, but do not correct them now. Assign the correction for Homework.

Step 8 (5 min)

Play the video again for everyone, so students from group B can see the video too.

Have some students compare their narratives with the real video.

Step 9 (10 min)

Share the link to the interactive worksheet. Students listen to the song and fill the gaps.

1- smile 2- better 3- favorite  4- girls 5- twenty 6 - stars  7- train  8- change  9- kiss 10 - time

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. Hi Mars,

    Thanks for your email! I was wondering…. is this lesson plan has any “category title”? I’m referring to the ones you use such as Musical Interview, etc… This LP sounds familiar considering the activities, however the jigsaw review seems new to me. Let me know if I could categorize it somehow or if it’s a brand new “untitled category” of yours 🙂

    Take care.


    English Teacher, private classes carolletutor@gmail.com I speak: English – Français – Español – Italiano – Português Please consider your environmental responsibility. Before printing this e-mail message, ask yourself whether you really need a hard copy.

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    On Fri, Jul 31, 2020 at 3:38 PM Song Activity Factory wrote:

    > Márcia “Mars” Bonfim posted: ” WELCOME! You love MUSIC and you know the > power songs have to MOTIVATE students. You also know that it takes TIME to > find a good (and NEW) song and prepare an activity to meet your needs. Here > you will find fun IDEAS, practical STEP-BY-STEP LESSON PLA” >


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