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Thread: Teaching the Writing of Lyrics

  1. #1
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    Default Teaching the Writing of Lyrics

    I'm an English teacher who's putting together some lessons for an informal music class, a jam club, really.



    Attached is the beginning of a lesson plan for an activity which is meant to teach the very basics of writing lyrics. I haven't finished it yet because I think it's too long already. I want to include a practice part where they get to write a song.

    I'm looking for advice about advice. If you were asked about how to write lyrics, what are some of things you would include?

    I was going to post the lesson plan here, but this 19 KB limit is ridiculous. I put it on google drive. Feel free to add whatever you'd like to the document directly.

    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ZX...ysS6Jo8x65_ox9
    Blogging about a momentous life change as I switch careers and continents--> Leaving America

  2. #2

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    It looks great.
    K
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  3. #3

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    Hello,

    Thanks for sharing the lesson plan. The first part is great and I like the way you made the transitions between the types of activity and integrated those into a structured plan. Have you finished it yet? Can it be used for the elementary grade level? I'm a music teacher and I wanted to create additional online courses for my students with domyhomework tasks and creative writing part for song lyrics: based on Kid Pan Alley Music (Lesson One: Pre-writing for Lyrics pdf). I think you may also try the technique of clustering to develop the skills of connecting images and ideas.

  4. #4

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    Also: from a linguistic point of view, it could be interesting to use an example of a song with an extraordinary text. Like those inspired by "nadsat" (a slang made up by Anthony Burgess in A Clockwork Orange): David Bowie's “Suffragette City”, for example.
    Last edited by RandyBonnette; 01-14-2020 at 07:50 PM. Reason: song

  5. #5
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    Ah that ESL Expat life...

    I think a good next step is to have them use that song or another of their choosing, and write their own song using only that tune. They should do at least one verse and the refrain or chorus, completely unrelated to the original song, but every 2 lines must rhyme together and fill the length of the space. That's actually a really good way to start writing songs.

    Or you could give them a topic or subject and they have to write a verse or a stanza to any song tune they like

    And you could also have them find a song that has a lot of meaning to them, and have them write another verse and a second chorus to make the song longer, but also fits into the rest of the song
    Last edited by Tenzen; 01-29-2021 at 03:40 PM.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tenzen View Post
    Ah that ESL Expat life...

    I think a good next step is to have them use that song or another of their choosing, and write their own song using only that tune. They should do at least one verse and the refrain or chorus, completely unrelated to the original song, but every 2 lines must rhyme together and fill the length of the space. That's actually a really good way to start writing songs.

    Or you could give them a topic or subject and they have to write a verse or a stanza to any song tune they like

    And you could also have them find a song that has a lot of meaning to them, and have them write another verse and a second chorus to make the song longer, but also fits into the rest of the song
    It's not just a good way to get started writing songs, it's the best way to get started. From personal experience. For many years I have thought that a muse should visit me or that my third eye should open and I will begin to write great beautiful compositions. But everything is trite simpler. I understood how to build a text. And after that I started studying poetry, and then you know yourself. Understand the technique, structure. And when the hands are untied, then the music itself will become.
    Last edited by Darel Aranovskie; 05-25-2021 at 02:45 AM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Your post Darel is lyrical itself.

    I had not thought about this thread for over a year. The night I delivered the lyrics-writing workshop in March 2020 was the last gathering of students we had before it all got locked down...

    ...I'm waiting for the day I can teach that way again...

    There's a song in there somewhere.

    Here's 9 minutes of the 90, featuring an all-UU band collaborating from different corners of the world.

    Blogging about a momentous life change as I switch careers and continents--> Leaving America

  8. #8

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    Wow, looks like you are an amazing teacher. I watched the video with great pleasure. I've seen a similar pitch at open lectures in the Ivy League. Bravo

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