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Yakkety Yak

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As most of you know, music is a way of connecting with our students and when
teaching pronunciation, it is often a helpful practice. So, when working
on short vowels with my students (a multi-level, multi-national group) and in
particular with the short "a," I dug through my dad's collection of oldies and
pulled out "Yakkety Yak" by The Coasters. I typed up the transcript,
added some clip art and off we went. First, I had the students listen to the song
and brainstorm all the short "a" words that they heard as I listed their thoughts on the
board. Then, I gave them a copy of the transcript, we listened again and
they circled the short "a" words on the transcript. Next we checked the transcript with
the list on the board and discussed inconsistencies. Finally, we practiced the words and
sang the song as a class! It was quite fun and a real success. This song is also
useful when teaching daily activities--a nice way of incorporating pronunciation
into a survival skill lesson.

Julie Torres, Catholic Charities, Refugee Services
Ft. Worth, TX

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