Teaching With Songs: You – Benny Blanco, Marshmello & Vance Joy [PRESENT CONTINUOUS]


Here is the place to be if you believe in the power of songs to teach English!

The place to find Creativity, Inspiration, Teaching Ideas and Resources to bring Musical Innovation to your English Language Teaching Practice!

Whether you teach English online or not, teaching with songs has a wider scope than you might think, and it does not only mean gap-fill!. Check my older posts and don’t be afraid to try something new!

This week, the Song Activity Factory features Benny Blanco, Marshmello & Vance Joy! 

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


This song-based STEP-BY-STEP LESSON PLAN  for ENGLISH language TEACHING features the lyrics and music video for “You” by Benny Blanco, Marshmello & Vance Joy. Students GUESS what someone is doing in a picture, TALK and ANSWER yes/no questions about their families using the Present Continuous, WATCH a grammar practice video to practice yes/no answers and questions using the Present Continuous, DESCRIBE pictures from a music video and WRITE sentences using the Present continuous, WATCH a music video and number the pictures, LISTEN to the song and DO an exercise with the lyrics with an interactive worksheet.

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

Language level: A2 
Learner type: All ages
Skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing
Language/grammar: daily activities, Present Continuous, affirmative sentences and yes/no questions
Materials: YouTube video, genial.ly presentation and interactive worksheet
Duration: about an hour
Download your free teaching resources:  instructions.pdf

See below for other posts to Teach English Creatively With Songs:


Step 01 (5 min)

Show slide one and ask students to guess what the person is doing in the picture. Hint that it may not be that obvious. Have them take wild guesses. Write them on the board.

After a while, show the slide two to reveal what he is really doing.

Step 02 (7 min)

Ask students to give you verbs for things they and their family do every day.

For example: have breakfast, take a shower, shave, brush their teeth, etc.

Ask them yes/no questions with the verbs: Is you mother having breakfast now? Is your father shaving now? Etc (to prepare them for the next step)

Write them on the board. Have some students make some sentences in the present continuous using the verbs, and send them via chat box. Correct the mistakes.

Step 03 (7 min)

Grammar Practice Video

Tell students they’re going to watch a video to practice answering yes/no questions in the Present continuous tense. Use the picture in slide 2 to review yes/no questions.

Ask Is he riding a bike? (have students say: No, he isn’t. He’s roller skating.

If you are teaching face2face, play the video and point at students to answer fast, before the right answer pops on screen.

If you’re teaching online (with poor connection to play the video), share the video link with them to watch on their devices. Tell them to watch it twice, and take notes of any verbs they did not know.

Verbs in the video: brush teeth, shave, read, watch TV, cook, dance, clean, take a shower, swim, work, study, play volleyball, take a nap, eat.

Step 04 (10 min)

Show the pictures from the music video (slide 3). Have students describe them.

Ask students if they know which music video or band it is. 

Students complete the sentences for scenes from a music video, using the given verbs in the present continuous tense.

Step 05 (8 min)

Students watch the music video 2x and number the pictures in their correct order (slide 5).

Step 06 (10 – 15 min)

Interactive worksheet: LINK

Students listen to the song and cross out the extra words.

To check their work, tell students to click in FINISH!!! And then, CHECK MY ANSWERS.

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!  🙂

PS. Elevate Your ELT with this Free Course!

From Dull to Dynamic: Song Facts For ELT Success” teaches you to turn ‘bad’ songs into engaging lessons. Click this LINK and start the course now! (blog post format)

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