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The Universal Language

Title – The Universal Language
By – Joel

I’m a student teacher, doing my graduate diploma of education. I’ve been on professional practice this past week at a school with a very multicultural community within it. In my year 5 class I have two ESL children, one of whom I’ve barely heard a peep out of in the entire 7 weeks I’ve been attached to the classroom.

I was running a music lesson last week, concentrating on mood and imagery in instrumental music. I got the kids to make rough notes on how the pieces of music I played for them felt, any mental images they conjured, words that came to mind, weather it made them think of, whether the music was warm or cold – you get the idea.

After they had listened to the music and made their notes, we had a class discussion and made lists of words that the children had attached to the music. This ESL girl that I’d barely heard speak could not get her hand up enough to offer her thoughts! I suppose it proves that music is a universal language – the task I’d given them was aimed at letting them record what they could hear in a raw form, free of grammatical structure that an English lesson requires, so it lets the kids understand the material according to their own experience, and record it at their own level of language.

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