Monday, April 19, 2010

Verbs and Tenses and Some Funny, Silly Songs

     This post is a continuation of my previous post, a sharing of what I had done with my kids during the Klinik Cemerlang UPSR that I conducted over the weekend.

     Well, I did some grammar sessions with my pupils and because most of the children find grammar as boring as an old dog, I need to step up to the challenge of making it more interesting for them. As the kids love singing so much, I tried to come up with some funny, silly songs to teach grammar.

     The first silly song is on Subject-Verb agreement. I want my pupils to remember the correct verb 'to be' for each subject. Here is the silly song lyric:

I am
He is
She is
It is
Ali is
You are
We are
They are
Ali and Abu are

     I tried to capture this video with my cheap handy-cam so that I can share the silly melody with everybody. Please excuse the poor quality :-P Heheh! ;-)


video


     We sang the song several times until the children were able to memorise it (which was quite fast!). Then, I explained to them how to use the song to remember that there are 3 groups of subjects, namely the 'I' Group (which consists of only the pronoun 'I'), the Singular Group (which consists of the pronouns He, She, It and any singular nouns e.g. Ali) and the Plural Group (which consists of the pronouns You, We, They and any plural nouns e.g. Ali and Abu). Then, I used the same song to drill the verb 'to have' and 'to do' by changing the verbs accordingly.

For example, to teach the verb 'to have', I changed the lyric to the following:

I have
He has
She has
It has
Ali has
You have
We have
They have
Ali and Abu have

     The same song was also used to drill the three types of verbs in the Past Tense form, i.e. 'was/were', 'had' and 'did'.

     The song was indeed silly, but the children loved it. They did not seem to mind repeating it over and over, because they loved singing so much. I think the song somehow managed to camouflage the boring routine of drills and repetition. Heheh! ;-P

     When teaching Tenses, I decided that I should use the same approach. I decided to teach Tenses through sentences, because my pupils had a hard time remembering terms and factual things. To help make the sentences 'stick' in their minds, I turned them into another silly song. The lyric:

I like to go to school every day
I am learning English now
I also went to school yesterday
I was taking my notes while the teacher was teaching
I will go again tomorrow

     There are five Tenses in the song:

     Simple Present: I like to go to school every day.
     Present Continuous: I am learning English now.
     Simple Past: I also went to school yesterday.
     Past Continuous: I was taking my notes while the teacher was teaching.
     Future Tense: I will go again tomorrow.

     My first objective was to introduce the form of verbs for each Tense - for the subject 'I', the root verb (like) is used for Simple Present, 'be verb + ing' (am learning / was teaching) for Continuous Tense, 'will verb' (will go) for Future Tense. Secondly, I wanted the pupils to be aware of the Time Adverbs for each tenses, for example 'every day' would refer to Simple Present, 'now' indicates Present Continuous, 'yesterday' for Simple Past and 'tomorrow' for Future Tense. So I got the pupils to sing the song several times till they were able to remember all the five sentences. Then, we played around with the lyrics. Change the subject, the verb, the time adverb. The 'changed' lyric like below, for instance, had helped my pupils to understand not only the five tenses involved, but also other grammar items like personal pronouns and possessive adjectives - when the pronoun 'I' was changed to 'He', the possessive adjective 'my' should be changed to 'his' (line 4).

He likes to go to school every day
He is learning English now
He also went to school yesterday
He was taking his notes while the teacher was teaching
He will go again tomorrow

     The song goes something like this:


video

     Apart from grammar, we also did a song on Part 2 of the UPSR Information Transfer question, better known as the 'I would choose...' among my pupils. This I did with my very weak pupils, with the hope of giving them some ideas on how to 'give reasons for their choice.' Of course, writing the lyric of the song word for word while answering Part 2 of Section B is a pure act of 'template writing', but I still have to start somewhere. These are very, very weak pupils I am talking about. After sometime of using the song as their guide for answering, I noticed that a few of them showed some potential to go further. That was when I introduced new words and new sentence patterns. For my better performing pupils who could write the 'reasons' independently, this song is sung just for fun. I feel the urge to share this one because it is such a hit among the children in my school. Haha! And I love it too!




video


     And these are the words to the song:

I would choose Item A because it is the best
It is reasonable
It is suitable
It is interesting
I like it very much
I hope I will be happy with my choice

     For the time being, I think that would be all. There are more of songs such as these, I would share them in another post. In the mean time, it is my hope that you would find this useful. Feel free to tell me what you think, I truly appreciate all types of feedback. Thanks again! ;-)

11 comments:

  1. wow!! i love it...what a very nice songs u had...i will use this to teach my students...i'm sure they will like it...they will love english...

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  2. Thanks! Haha! I think they all sound a bit silly, though. But it doesn't matter, as long as the kids love them! ;-) Glad that you find these helpful.

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  3. it's funny cyn not silly..the funniest of methods are always the best.. it will be better for the pupils- they will not get stressed out n the more they relax, the better they learn..!!actually it's quiet clever n indeed i will adopt this into my own teaching and learning hours..u bet i will!!!!;-))))thanks!!!!

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  4. Good luck with that, Cris! Haha! We had a good laugh in class when I first sang these songs to the kids. I guess I agree with you that funny methods always work the best, because humour is always memorable. In my school, I have officially appointed Friday as 'Fun Day', a day for me to bring my old, battered, and impossible-to-tune guitar into my classes and have fun singing funny grammar melodies with my pupils. Now the kids look forward to Friday every week!

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  5. What??? The black Americans say otherwise though...

    I has
    Yall has
    They has

    Haha! :-D

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  6. What an amazing songs 4 kids who bored to learned tenses through chalk n talk ! They would b very surprised by tis songs. Furthermore, u light up their learning life and tell them indirectly that learning language is fun... U'd inspring my soul n passion in teaching. Thx...

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  7. Nice... pinjam ur voice 2 teach my Ps at school ya..

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  8. amazing..you're a great teacher..thanks for sharing ideas with us..

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  9. Hi Cynthia, would you please email me your recorded song...it sounds really nice and hope to use them in my class...please email me at maromar79@gmail.com tq...

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  10. You're so creative and talented... Your pupils must be very happy to be in your class. Great voice too. Keep it up!

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  11. i owe u with those brilliant ideas..
    hope u keep creating awesome teaching materials in fun ways..

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