Do you allow your students to listen to music in your classroom? A study that was conducted in 2016 concluded that 79% of people are more productive with their work when they are listening to music. Music can also lower people’s heart rate and stress levels, helping them relax more. Dopamine releases into our brain when we hear the music we really like, putting us in a better mood as well.
Now that you’ve decided you want your students to be able to listen to music while they are working, what do you listen to?
Suggestions for Listening to Music in Your Classroom
First, mix it up. A lot of teachers like to play “pump it up” music as students enter and exit the classroom. (Some teachers find this is too stimulating for their students and decide against it. Of course, this is a matter of doing what you see fit for your class.)
Next, be sure to switch up the genres of music. My students and I listen to Disney hits, country, the 70s and 80s, rap, hard rock, and even steel drum music. There are so many good tunes out there! Expose students to them all!
Lastly, have your students help you create a playlist. This allows them to have input and increases the variety of music played. (I am sure to sensor the songs for explicit language and to make sure it fits the vibe I want in my classroom before adding it to the list.) I DO tend to make the music instrumental as I have found songs with music are usually distracting for students.
If you don’t want to make your own music list, don’t! Here are a few specific stations that have great music for your middle school classrooms:
- Dallas String Quartet on Pandora turns popular songs into instrumental music
- Jingle Punks Hipster Orchestra on Pandora is pop music turned instrumental
- Classical Goes Pop on Pandora is full of wordless, modern songs
- Under the Stars on Spotify has a great mix of slower and upbeat instrumentals
- Video Game Soundtracks on Spotify have some great background music choices
- Miss Bensko on Spotify has some excellent playlists that she’s created in a variety of genres
ELA Lessons with Music
Incorporating music into English Language lessons will definitely engage your students. Have you used music in any of your lessons? Here are some lesson ideas to incorporate into your classroom:
Have a suggestion you think I need to add to the list? Be sure to let me know by leaving a comment below! Happy listening!