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Linguaholic

Learning Languages Through Music


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Imo music is a helpful way for one to learn a language. :) Foreign dubs of Disney songs are usually the kinds of music that help me learn another language - it played a big role when I was learning both Dutch and German.

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I don't find it very helpful in the sense of remembering what the words mean.  You get to catch on to the sound of the music, but I think that is all...you really don't memorize the meaning of the words.  Maybe some people are different, but it really has never helped me out that much.

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I don't find it very helpful in the sense of remembering what the words mean.  You get to catch on to the sound of the music, but I think that is all...you really don't memorize the meaning of the words.  Maybe some people are different, but it really has never helped me out that much.

Actually my wife loves to be in the car listening to CDs in English while she read the lyrics, so in this case it's pretty effective and we both entertain ourselves and learn at the same time.

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Listening to Julieta Venegas has helped my Spanish quite a bit. Her songs are peppy, upbeat and fun too, while being easy to understand. I'd recommend her songs to anyone learning the language.

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Thanks for the tip Linguetronix, I'm going to look her up. Listening to music is great to maintain our languages alive, also watching movies with subtitles is a good help.

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Music is a very effective learning tool. Even language can be effectively learned through music. Back in pre-school, this was how our teachers taught us our basic alphabet. We learned a lot of vocabulary words through songs. The patterns in music help our brain respond to stimulus caused by new language elements introduced. Singing songs in foreign languages gives us auditory and oral experiences that also enhance learning.

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I try not to listen to too much Japanese Music. It's just too good, and I'd hate to ruin the music by listening too much to it. But yeah, it's a great way of learning words/pronounciation and all. Of course it's less effective than raw studying, but it's better than nothing for sure!  :smile:

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I personally believe that music isn't as effective in language learning. The pronunciation tends to be a lot different. Take English music for instance, some syllables are stretched out for far to long or the words are obscured. In Chinese music we can't hear the different intonations.

I don't know, that's just me. I prefer to watch film in the other language to learn.

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I think learning through music is a good idea. It's both fun and informative. You really get a grasp of how natives speak and what sentences sound appropriate with what words. The key though is to have a lyric translation so that you know what's going on afterwards.

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Music has always been a great tool for me to learn. I pick up things faster through listening to melodies and words/pronunciations stick in my mind better when listening to music in the language I want to learn. There's a reason we can all remember the lyrics to 1000 different songs but struggle to learn information for tests!

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I found popular music to be hugely helpful to learning German. Especially when I was first starting I would memorize the lyrics and translations to dozens of songs and listen to them over and over. It definitely carried over to other aspects of the language and gave me a great core of vocabulary and an understanding of basic sentence structures. Juli and Jupiter Jones are my favorites and I would recommend listening to music as an aid to anyone trying to learn a foreign language.

Obviously, music is just a bonus and can't replace proper study of grammar but should can be great in conjunction with it.

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  • 5 months later...

I seem to recall that spoken language and sung language use different parts of the brain.  I suspect that this may affect how useful learning through sung language may be.  Perhaps when you do not know a language well you may utilize different parts of the brain so that the learning process still works.

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My native language is not english, and I'm pretty much self-taught. While it was not the only method I used to learn, I used to listen to music with the lyrics in one hand and a English-Spanish dictionary on the other. That was back when I was a kid and had time for that.

It does help a lot, specially with recognition of spoken words, and it also helps a lot with expanding your vocabulary. Since you will probably listen to songs over and over again, once you find out what the words mean, repetitive listening will get them stuck in your brain.

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I think music can be a great way to as part of your ambition and process of learning a language, especially when you re-listen and re-listen the same songs. Not to say its a replacement of other elements, reading, memorizing words/phrases/expressions, but it is one piece of the puzzle, and I think a very useful one.

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I also used music to learn language or rather as I listen to a music I'm learning a new word. I've been listening to Jpop songs as well because I love these kinds of songs and I realized that I can understand the lyrics eventually because there are words that sounds familiar to me.

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It is fun and helpful to learn language through music.  I am having alternate mean to learn, get used to the sounds and intonation as well as the rhythm of the language.  I usually listen and try to learn the lyrics of songs.  It does help me a lot.

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Using music to learn a language can be very helpful.  This especially would be useful in the beginning to learn some basics.  Interestingly much of language is based in the temporal lobe of the brain which is also where music is based.  I wonder if this has any affect on combining music and language.

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I'm sure they are related somehow, starshinesis. Since similar parts of the brain are used to process language and music. That's why we all relate so well to music. And it's easy for us to remember. Picking up a new language is kind of going through a similar process. For some reason, it's easy for us to pick up things when activate a certain part of our brains. Using music to learn a language is just taking advantage of that biological tick in our brains.

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Yes. Music has helped me to learn a new language. I like watching a cartoon called Tinga Tinga. It is in Swahili and they sing songs in the cartoon. I have picked up quite a few Swahili words from this alone and I think it has been really helpful. It has helped me with the pronunciation of the words as well as the type of inflection needed for the words. I have also learned some French in this same manner. We have a station here that is only in French and they play African music that is sung in French. I like the songs so much that I have picked up on the words.

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Listening to music helps to stimulate more of the brain so listening to music while learning a language would logically help you learn better because more of your brain is engaged in teh learning process.  Also music tends to bring out emotions and we tend to remember things better that cause an emotion in us thus music with language will most likely be remembered better than just language learning alone.

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