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You are as many people as the number of languages you speak - Hungarian proverb
Too many English learners are stuck on the "intermediate plateau." They don't get enough exposure to the right materials (low input); they've had uninspiring instructors or lessons (low motivation); they feel uncomfortable communicating (high stress/low fluency). Many have limited exposure English outside of class. Low input leads to low comprehension. This leads to low confidence and low motivation, which leads back to low input.
To break this cycle we need to engage learners in intensive, repetitive practice with the language they need for everyday communication. It must be fun (so they'll do it), in context (so it's meaningful) and low stress (so they'll acquire most of it subconsciously).
A focus on rhythm and rhyme provides such practice. We don't normally read a newspaper article more than once or listen to a recorded conversation over and over; but it's natural to repeat the songs we like (and read the lyrics) without growing bored. Moreover, songs provide unique opportunities to build listening skills, develop pronunciation and stimulate classroom discussion.
By the end of the course, teachers will have a good understanding of what makes language practice effective, the role of rhythm and rhyme plays in deepening learning, and the skills needed to take all this further by selecting, creating, and adapting songs and activities to provide effective language practice for their students.
All participants will have exclusive access to ColloTunes songs, lyrics, and activities created by the instructor.
In this session we’ll explore past and current thinking on the role of language practice, take a look at what doesn’t work, what works, and together come to understand why. Then we’ll delve into theory before moving right into discovering the role rhythm and rhyme plays in strengthening memory, learning, and motivation. By the end of the session participants will have a good understanding of theory and a clear idea of how language practice can be transformed through the power of rhythm, rhyme, chant & song. Teachers share ideas for using songs and chants in the classroom and collect resources related to topics raised in the session
In this session we build on learning from week 1 and go on to focus on ways to use songs and chants in the English language classroom. Topics include teaching groups of different ages, levels, cultures, and interests, exploiting songs to promote communication skills, and choosing the most engaging activities to do with your students. Teachers create and share a short songbook of songs that would be effective for language practice and outline some activities that might work with them.
In this session we take a close look at ColloTunes, the songs and videos Jason R. Levine creates as Fluency MC. Jason provides guidance in using his materials in the classroom as well as insight into how teachers can write their own songs and chants. Teachers select a ColloTune from the ColloLearn YouTube channel or Rhyme-On-Time activity book and create an original activity to accompany the song.
In this session we discuss how to go about writing original songs and chants. Topics include brainstorming ideas, finding rhymes, choosing rhythms, selecting music, and cooperating and collaborating on projects. Teachers create and share a short song or chant and get feedback from Jason and fellow participants.
Jason R Levine is Ambassador and Knowledge Entertainer at Gallery Languages, where he conducts webinars and workshops for English students and teachers at schools worldwide. He has eighteen years of experience as an English teacher, teacher trainer, and materials writer.
Jason is the creator of ColloLearn, an approach to English language learning based on the songs he writes and performs as Fluency MC. He also writes songs and chants for several publishers, including Oxford University Press. As an English Specialist with the U.S. Department of State, Jason has led teacher training programs in fourteen countries in Europe, the Americas, Africa, and the Middle East.
After earning an MA in TESOL from Hunter College in 1999, Jase taught at several schools before becoming the director of curriculum development for Embassy English. In 2002, he co-founded a TOEFL preparation school for international students in New York City.
Jase maintains the ColloLearn YouTube channel, the Fluency MC Facebook page, and Fluency MC on Twitter. He is an active administrator of many Facebook groups for English language teachers and learners, including Innovative Teachers of English, Gallery Teachers, Teachers Teaching Online, and Gallery Languages Rhyme On Time Workshops.