Updated: Aug 2, 2021
Yesterday, I was not able to blog because I was at a summer event. The event theme was to show the differences between the Japanese way of teaching vs our countries way of teaching. My major was music so I had to take that subject. I remembered my teacher always told me music is not just words but also the images you create when you hear a song. if it was classical music try and listen to each instrument played so that you can get a feeling for the song. I decided to use this concept for a popular song in Japan “Dynamite.” which is an all-English song. I broke down the lyrics through the flashcard. and constantly told them “music is image” The song was in the order of the lyrics but the student did not know they were practicing this song. When the first verse was completed and I played the song, the student's eyes lit up. I then played the song from YouTube and slowed it down. We all sang the song together. Then we switched it to normal speed and sang it again. The students were able to sing the song!! They said they never tried to sing it before but the lesson gave them a better understanding through the images.
This should be your goal as an ALT. Find different ways to get the students to understand through thinking and not just translation. Translation merely blocks the image of the language studied. Try and help them to focus on how to imagine and use the words in conversation with you.
BTW, it was so fun to see their eyes light up and understand. Maybe I have helped to create an English singer in the group!!!!