Monday, May 11, 2009

Korean songs, much like the Indian songs I've grown up with, are liberally sprinkled with random bits of English. They help my students learn English in a way that's sometimes helpful but mostly just intensely frustrating. For example, consider the following sentences with the names of popular songs italicized:

"Does nobody have an eraser?"
"Who can tell me what a noun is?"
"Oh, I'm sorry!"
"How do you spell running? R-U-N-N-I-N-G."
"No, no way, that's crazy."
"Boys and girls, is it hot or cold outside?"

Random snippets of English from commercials are also included, I suppose. If I use the word "really", my older students say "really...simple...easy" in a voice that mocks how native speakers sound, which comes from a credit card commercial. When I use one of those words in a sentence, students often giggle hysterically and then sing the relevant part of the song they're reminded of. It's too much to handle that the word from the song is an actual word used by actual English speakers. So, they giggle.

Needless to say, here is one of my favourite Korean songs (Crazy), which taught my older students how to insult each other in English.

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