Singing vocabulary becomes popular teaching tool

OCEANSIDE — MiraCosta College
Associate music instructor Steven Traugh, who also teaches at Laurel Elementary School in Oceanside, was asked by a fellow teacher to record some English vocabulary lists for her Spanish-speaking students and their families. Hearing these high-frequency words spoken and pronounced helps students learn the language and is used at every elementary school in the Oceanside Unified School District.
Traugh, however, thought it might be a good project for his MiraCosta College recording arts students, who took the lists, set them to music and recorded them as echo chants.
“My MCC students had a great time and the recordings have been a huge hit at the school,” Traugh said.
Lisa McKethan, a first-grade teacher at Laurel, uses the recordings in her class and also sent them home for her students to share with their parents so they can all learn the language.
“The recordings are awesome,” McKethan said. “It is a great way to get more English language into the homes of our Spanish-speaking students as well as remediation for below-grade-level students.”
Traugh’s recordings may be shared with other classes at Laurel, and eventually may be used throughout the district. And Traugh hopes his recording arts students will be able to make similar tapes for other grades, too. 

“I think there is the potential for a continuing collaboration between OUSD and MiraCosta College that would be to the benefit of all,” said Traugh.


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