This material includes more than forty songs featuring different uses of the subjunctive mood - the "otro modo" in "Cantar de otro modo" - from "Emociones" to "Circunstancias" (or "Sin que + subjunctive".) Lyrics accompany each YouTube video.
Type of Material:
Music Blog; collection
Instructors can adapt the lyrics provided to create clozeline activities for student use. Pre- and post-listening activities can also be created to increase students' comprehension and personalize the songs for them. For example, after listening to "Si fuera un chico," students can reflect on how their lives would be different if they were of the opposite sex. Students can also listen to the songs outside of class as a way to reinforce the grammar and receive comprehensible input.Independent study inclass to illustrate certain discrete grammar points.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
This material most easily lends itself to improving listening comprehension. It may also be used to teach culture (e.g. Luis Guerra's "Ojalá que llueva café en el campo"), make connections to other disciplines (e.g. politics in Juanes's "A Dios le pido") and make comparisons (e.g. compare the English and Spanish versions of Beyoncé's "Si fuera un chico").
Target Student Population:
First and second-year students of Spanish can benefit from this site. Both secondary and post-secondary learners will like it.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Basic Spanish and Familiarity with the subjunctive verb forms and uses
The site's creators have identified songs that illustrate nearly every use of the subjunctive mood imaginable in both the present and imperfect and ranging from the general ("Deseos") to the specific (with "para que"). The songs represent a variety of countries and genres. Most of them are contemporary, which will appeal to secondary and post-secondary students, but artists like the early twentieth-century tango singer Carlos Gardel are also included.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
This site not only exposes students to songs in the target language but also demonstrates the prevalence of the subjunctive mood in common usage of the Spanish language.The fact that the students have to listen multiple times to understand lyrics correctly is helpful for listening comprehension practice.
The site would more effectively engage learning if interactive and/or self-correcting activities were included. However, by identifying songs that feature so many different uses of the subjunctive, the creators have offered an invaluable service to Spanish educators and students.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The site is very well organized according type of subjunctive used in each song. Thumbnail views of each video clip are clearly labeled with the songs' title and artist(s). It includes a brief introduction but no instructions as use of the information provided is largely intuitive.
There is a great amount of empty space in the right-hand side of the page after the end of the category list. Using larger thumbnails of the videos to fill the space is one way to make the site more aesthetically pleasing. Reformatting the category list to make it more narrow is another way.
Other Issues and Comments:
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