A phonological analysis of a singing activity in an elementary-school English activity class
501 , 2015-03-31 , 東京大学大学院教育学研究科
The purpose of this paper is to describe the English phonological awareness that elementary school children might gain by singing English songs in foreign language activity classes. In this study, the author had investigated whether speech accents and rhythms were reflected in musical accents and rhythms. As a result of the investigation, it was observed that stressed syllables were likely to be matched with the higher and longer musical notes. This analysis leads to the conclusion that utilizing songs can be one of the effective resources for teaching English syllables, accents, and rhythms. The discourse analysis showed that some children described these phonological items in their own words during and after the singing activity, but at the same time, their descriptions were ambiguous. The teacher of this class did not pay attention to the difference between the linguistic definition of the term “rhythm” and the musicological one. Consequently, it might have led to their vague responses. Thus, it is important for elementary school teachers to construe children’ s intuitive utterances and descriptions by utilizing some fundamental pieces of knowledge of English phonology. It would enable teachers to have their children become more conscious of the phonological difference between Japanese and English.