Music is the heartbeat of the soul

When people think about learning a new language, they often imagine sitting in a classroom writing endless lines of grammar rules and vocabulary. But it doesn’t have to be that way!

Language is all about communication with others, and one of the ways humans have done that throughout history is with music. Music allows us to express anger, frustration, love, and every other emotion you can imagine.

I often tell my students, “repeat, repeat, repeat, it’s the only way to learn”. That is why music can be very helpful in learning vocabulary and common phrases. Especially if it’s a song you really enjoy. You can put it on repeat and sing along to it numerous times.

Learning a language using this method is great because you can listen to music almost everywhere you go. In the car, on the train, while you ride your bike, etc. It will help you improve your pronunciation and it will teach you vocabulary words in context.

So here’s what you can do to learn a language with music:

  1. Pick a song you like. Everyone has different preferences when it comes to music. I personally like folk and latin music. When I sit down to work, I listen to songs by Ed Patrick, Daniela Andrade, or Avalanche City. It puts me in a calm mood.
  2. Look for the translation of the lyrics in your language. I recommend https://lyricstranslate.com/ They have an extensive database of lyrics translations. As you listen to the song, follow along with the lyrics and when you don’t understand something, look at the translation in your language.
  3. If you want to memorize the song, I recommend that you learn the chorus first. Then learn each line by repeating it as often as necessary. There are many lyric videos on YouTube. Search for your song + lyrics and you’ll most likely find it there. As you watch the video, read each line carefully, pause whenever you need to and rewind to hear it again.
  4. Don’t forget to sing. I have a bad singing voice, but when I’m alone I sing at the top of my lungs. Don’t worry about your singing ability, just have fun with it.

I want to help you understand that language learning can be fun. Like they say, “it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey”. And this is one of the most rewarding journeys you will ever go on.

Vocabulary:

  1. express (verb): convey (a thought or feeling) in words or by gestures and conduct.
  2. in context (phrase): considered together with the surrounding words or circumstances.
  3. preference (noun): a greater liking for one alternative over another or others.
  4. extensive (adj.): large in amount or scale.
  5. at the top of one’s lungs (idiomatic): Very loudly; as loudly as (vocally) possible.

Comprehension Questions:

  1. What do people often imagine when they think about learning a new language?
  2. What can music help us express?
  3. Where can you listen to music?
  4. Where is a good place to start when you want to memorize a song?
  5. Can learning a language be fun?

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