Everyone knows about using songs with young children to promote language learning. But songs can offer great value in any classroom—including ones in which the students may NOT want to sing (business classes, teens, …).

Because, really, songs are not just about singing. There is soooooo much more one can do with songs! Fill-in-the-blanks; synopses; vocabulary matching (match vocabulary from the lyrics with images or definitions); crossword puzzles (vocabulary from the song); lyrics scrambles; comprehension questions; discussion questions; find the rhyme scheme; etc.

Below are links to PDFs to a lesson I worked up for the song “Pancho and Lefty.” There is also a link to the video for the song on YouTube. The two singers play the title roles in the video story, and the songwriter is one of the extras in the background.

If you like country music, you’ll probably love this one. If you don’t usually care for country, you’ll still probably find a lot to like in the superbly-crafted lyrics.

Pancho and Lefty — lyrics and worksheet

Pancho and Lefty — Teacher’s guide

Pancho and Lefty — YouTube video