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Music in Language Instruction

Music is a powerful force in our world. Just about every society in the world has developed their own musical sounds and rhythms, whether they use instruments they make from nature around them or use high-tech electronic gadgets. Music is, quite simply, a universal experience. While the melody and rhythm make music engaging, they also reach further into our minds than we realize. 

When children are taught a second language, vocabulary acquisition can be quite a trick. Repetition and other standard memorization techniques all work fine, but if you add music and rhythm to the process, the learning process goes much faster and sinks in much deeper. Songs tell a story and tie that story line to rhythms and melodies that the children remembers most easily.

Remember when you learned the ABC song? Remember how the letters flow through the rhythm and melody and still stick in your head? Even without a story line that song (and other nursery rhymes) become stuck in our heads forever. That’s exactly how it works when you use music to help teach a second language to children. [Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream…]

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