I love to listen to music. It doesn’t matter what group or style, I love music. I honestly think that if I had to pinpoint the connection I have with my students, it is this. I know their music and through this I know them.
This summer I read the book “the Book Whisperer” and as I have begun to match my students with books that they will love, I have realized that I’m sitting on a gold mine of comprehensible input. You see, I also love Latino music…
I’ve always taught a lot of songs in class, not just my favorites. I seek out bands that will appeal to my kids’ different tastes. We listen to pop, rock, reggaeton, tribal… Everything!
I’ve begun to suggest bands and songs to students based on their musical interests and do you know what?? They’re downloading new music, listening to language outside of my classroom, and even finding and suggesting music to me!
Music in my classroom is not tested. We listen, fill in a cloze, watch the video, we just enjoy it together. We discuss why we like and don’t like certain songs… We bond over our common love.
This week our Spanish 1 story was about a sad girl who was listening to music. It turned out that I was the girl and I was sad because I was listening to “don’t drop that thun thun thun” and I was sad because I couldn’t drop that thun thun thun! A girl asked if I knew that song and before I could say yes, another student said “of course! She knows every good song.” A very happy moment for me! We have common ground even though I’m 25 years older than they are!
If you aren’t a music whisperer yet, consider starting w what’s popular in your kids’ world to give yourself a point of reference as you try to match TL music with their interests!!
Some favorites of my kids: los Rakas, Sie7e, Tito el Bambino, Sonny Monreal, Reik, Ana Tijoux, Juan Magan, Wisin y Yandel, 3Ball MTY