Recently I posted about how children’s language development may be helped by their parents singing to them.
As a follow-up, there’s a good post about how beneficial songs can be for young learners in a classroom setting from the OUP Global Learning Blog. The writer, Devon Thargard, opens with an anecdote about his first day teaching kindergarten and how he engaged the children through a simple song. He then goes on to explain some other benefits of songs as teaching tools. One benefit that particularly grabbed me is:
Songs help to balance energy levels.
Some children come to class bouncing off the walls, while others are quite reserved. Starting class with an active song allows the higher energy students to “get the wiggles out” and the lower energy students to pep up a little.
I think this is the same for adult learners in a classroom setting. My class is from 6-9pm on a Monday evening, after I’ve been at work all day. Most of the others in my class have also had a long day at work, and depending on how it has gone, can either have high energy or low energy levels. By the middle of the class the energy seems to have evened out, then at the end it’s quite high as everyone is excited by what they’ve learned (and by the thought of going home!).
Perhaps a song to start the lesson would be a good way of getting us all ‘pepped up’ a little!