A friend asks me yesterday why I love music? I do indeed. Languages have always been the reason music came to me and it seems music itself has also helped me to become a better language learner. I call it the MLM technique.. MLM technique is not multi-level marketing or network marketing. This is in relation to music, lyrics and movement in development of language.
Music, as we know it, has never been described as an obstacle to language development. It is one of the best tools to use if you find yourself stuck thinking, “Is this correct?” Well if you read lyrics carefully, they are never written in perfectly proper sentences. Sentences are in fact broken into phrases called verses and chorus. It is simpler to remember phrases with music than a whole complete sentence with punctuations marks and grammatical rules. Short phrases called verses in songs are grammatically sound as there are always meaning behind those verses. The appeal of music for language development is so universal that whenever a 10 year old kid sings well, you can bet he speaks well too!
But the reverse is seldom true…
There are 3 basic techniques used to making music a great tool for your language development:
1. Music itself of course (Listening – auditory experience)
2. Lyrics (Reading – ear/eye co-ordination that will augment cognitive development through silent reading)
3. Movement (Visual learning – images will seal the impressions of sounds and words already heard and listened) Dancing is also a way of visual learning, moving your shoulders, tapping your hands along with rythm or hitting any surface to the beat of the drums.
As long as any part of your senses is engaged, you WILL learn. The more practice you get from co-ordinating these senses, the higher the level of your learning experience.
Here is an example.
Lyrics | Gloria Gaynor lyrics – I Say A Little Prayer lyrics
Train your eyes to ‘listen’ to the songs. There is no grammar to learn. Learning to speak well does not mean one has to speak more. The ear is not complete until it is used. By the time the baby is 7 months old in the womb, this organ is formed and it is ready to be used. Time spent exercising listening skills through silent reading whilst listening songs does not help you to become a singer, but actually train your brain to focus and concentrate on matters that concern your language development the most, that which empowers you to become a better listener.