Teaching With Songs: a Crazy Story with Harry Styles by Song Activity Factory

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innovation to your English Language Teaching Practice!

Whether you teach English online or not, using songs to teach has a wider scope than you think, and it’s not restricted to listening exercises with songs or gap-fill. Check my older posts and don’t be afraid to try something new!

This week, SAF features Harry Styles’ new hit: GOLDEN

I hope YOU and your students have a BLAST with it!

Description:

This free STEP-BY-STEP LESSON PLAN  for ENGLISH language TEACHING features the lyrics extract and music video for GoldenHarry Styles. Students TALK about relationships, WRITE a crazy short story together, READ stories, WATCH a music video and comment on it. OBS: This lesson plan was made for ONLINE TEACHING, but it can be modified for face-to-face instruction, as well.

Language level: A2 - B1
Learner type: All ages
Skills: speaking, reading  and writing
Topic: relationships
Language: Vocabulary related to dating, narrative tenses, sequences 
and discourse markers
Materials: Mp3 file, YouTube video
Duration: 1 hour - 1h 30 min
Download your free teaching resources:  instructions; song extract mp3

STEP-BY-STEP LESSON PLAN

PART 1 – WARM-UP/INTRO

Step 1. (5-7 min)

Show your students this song lyrics extract:

 “You're so golden
I'm out of my head, and I know that you're scared
Because hearts get broken
I don't wanna be alone
I don't wanna be alone when it ends
Don't wanna let you know
I don't wanna be alone”

And ask the following questions to the whole class:

 What is the singer singing about? Explain
 Is this a sad or a happy song?
 Is the singer a man or a woman? Why do you think so? 

Step 2. (5 min)

Play the song extract for them to check their ideas. Ask them if they know the song or the singer

(Harry Styles – Golden ) Ask them if their guesses were right or not and explain

PART 2 – WRITING A SHORT STORY

Step 3.

Tell your students they are going to write a crazy story together based on the lyrics extract. However, each student will write only one part of the story, and send you privately through the chat box

Step 4. (5 min)

Assign the numbered parts of the story below to your students. There is a small class version and a big class version. 

How to assign the numbered parts to your students:

If the class is relatively small, copy the number from the list and send it to the student via chat box privately.

For bigger classes, share your screen with the selected version with your students, and tell them their assigned numbers. Be sure to keep track of your students’ names and their assigned numbers for later checking! Write them down somewhere so you don’t get lost.

SMALL CLASS version (up to 18 students) 

Instructions: >For more than 6 students,  assign the same number to 2 or 3 students, and in the end you will have 2 or 3 different stories.

>If you don’t have an even number of students to double or triple the story, no problem! You can assign any numbered parts to different students. This way you can choose the best ones to fit the final cut of the story. For example: Say you have a class with 15 students. Assign numbers 1, 2 and 3 to 3 students. And then choose the best versions for the final cut.

>In case you have a class with only 5, 4, or 3 students, you can assign more than one number to the same student.

Numbered parts::

1 – Once there was a man/woman called (invent a name)…who…(complete with a verb and a complement) 

2 One day he/she was (complete with a verb+ ING) when (complete with a sentence with subject+ verb in the past + complement)

3 – Suddenly…. (complete with something unexpected that happened)

4 – Fortunately….(complete with something good that happened)

5 – Unfortunately….(complete with something bad that happened)

6 – And in the end…(complete the end of the story with he/she as the subject. Example: And in the end he/she got rich and moved to New York). 

BIG CLASS version (18  to 27 students) assign the same number to 2 or 3 students

Instructions:

>If you don’t have an even number of students to double or triple the story, no problem! You can assign any numbered parts to different students. This way you can choose the best ones to fit the final cut of the story. For example: Say you have a class with 21 students. Assign numbers 1, 2 and 3 to 3 students. And then choose the best versions for the final cut.

Numbered parts::

1 – Once there was a man/woman named (invent a name)…who…(complete with a verb and complement)

2 – he/she lived in (what city?) and liked/hated living there because (say why)

3- his/her family was (talk about the number of people, who and if they are happy or not and why)

4- he/she had a pet (what pet?) called (what name?) that (complete a verb and something funny)

5 One day he/she was (complete with a verb + ING) when (complete with a sentence with subject+ verb in the past + complement)

6 – Suddenly…. (complete with something unexpected that happened)

7 – Fortunately….(complete with something good that happened)

8 – Unfortunately….(complete with something bad that happened)

9 – And in the end…(complete the end of the story with he/she as the subject. Example: And in the end he/she got rich and moved to New York). 

Step 5 (10 – 15 min)

Tell your students to write their sentences and send you via private chat box

OBS 1:  students who got the numbers 5 to 9 need to base their ideas on the lyrics extract they talked about in part 1:

 “You're so golden
 I'm out of my head, and I know that you're scared
 Because hearts get broken
 I don't wanna be alone
 I don't wanna be alone when it ends
 Don't wanna let you know
 I don't wanna be alone” 

OBS 2. Make sure they write the number first, so you can order the story easily in step 6.

Example: 1- Once there was a woman named Susan who really liked cats.

As you receive your student’s sentences via chat, copy and paste them on a separate document (you can even use notepad) and start putting the story in order. This way the next step will be easier and faster for you.

Example: 1- Once there was a woman named Susan who really liked cats.

2 – 

3- 

4- he/she had a pet elephant called Dumbo that liked to fly.

5-

6 – Suddenly, the police arrived and arrested everyone

As you can see, in the end you are going to have a crazy story!

Step 6. (5 – 10 min)

After you have received all the numbered parts and arranged them in order,

Use the whiteboard to paste the first story so your students can read it.

Give them time to read the story and laugh.

If you have more than one story, do step 7 with one at a time.

PART 3 – THE MORAL OF THE STORY

Step 7. (5 – 10 min)

Tell your students that in pairs, they have to come up with the moral of the story.

Like this:

And the moral of the story is ________.

Divide them into breakout rooms – And give them 5 min to decide together on the moral of the story, write it and send it to you via chat box privately.

Share the ideas on the whiteboard and have the class vote on the best one.

Obs: if you still have time, you can have the class come up with a title for the story.

Step 8.  (5 – 10 min)

Show the music video and have students comment on it to close the activity!

As homework, you can ask your students to write a similar story using one of the models in step 4.

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

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Happy teaching!  🙂

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