Using verse and song to support
GOOSE et al.
Nursery rhymes, poetry and songs can
help ELL students' literacy
Why is this important for ELL students?
It helps ELL students acquire language and grammar skills in a
It makes learning fun and more meaningful while adding new
All language levels can be included in a nonthreatening way
decreasing the affective filter.
It provides authentic language providing multiple opportunities
What could this look like?
Using the song and rhyme such as "Three Blind Mice."
Write the words on a chart using different colors for words you
want to emphasize.
Model the song with your voice or accompanying music while
pointing to the words.
Go over the vocabulary.
Have students act out vocabulary to show understanding.
Repeat the song again inviting students to join in as they feel
Continue practicing during the week and ask students to point
to the words.
Display the chart in the classroom for independent reading.
More ideas using nursery rhymes and
Consider copying the text of songs and poems into books for
your students to use in their reading book boxes.
Allow space for students' illustrations.
Use for shared readings, partner readings or performing for
Use it to teach rhyming words and high frequency words,
consonant clusters etc..by having students highlight what you
I'm a Little Teapot.....
Adding motions and using realia will encourage ELL's to make
connections and reinforce learning.
Use familiar songs to teach content.
Familiar tunes such at "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" or the
"Alphabet Song" can easily be adapted to teach concepts,
vocabulary or parts of speech.
Encourage student groups to write their own lyrics for content
or even singing the classroom rules.
Create and save your charts.
Consider laminating your charts and file when no longer
Uitlize your volunteers to write them out.
Collaborate with your team for ideas and creativity.
Have a celebration and review old and new charts.
Use verse or song everyday!
Opitz, Michael F. 2009. Comprehension and English Language Learners: 25 Oral
Reading Strategies That Cross Proficiency Levels. Portsmouth, NH. Heinemann.