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Talking About Pop Music and Musicians


Getting younger, teenage students to talk can be a real challenge. This lesson focuses on using a True or False game as a means of motivation to get them discussing their favorite types of music and musicians.

Aim: Getting teenage students to converse in English

Activity: True of False game

Level: Intermediate


  • Activate vocabulary by asking students about a number of musicians, names of instruments, verbs used in speaking about music, etc.
  • Divide the students into small groups and give the students the "Music: True or False" handout.
  • Ask students to discuss each statement and decide if it is true or false giving reasons for their decision.
  • Go through each statement selecting a student from each group to give their opinion - making sure that they state their reasoning for the decision.
  • Make the exercise competitive by giving a point for each correct answer. You can up the ante by also giving points for well stated arguments which can help motivate students to actually explain their decisions. Example Scoring: one point for a correct answer, 0 points for a simple true or false, one point for an explanation, one point for a grammatically correct explanation. Total possible points on any given question: Three. One for the correct answer, one for an explanation, and an extra point for a grammatically correct answer.
  • Extend exercise by having students create "True or False" statements of their own to be shared with other groups.
Music: True or False

Decide if each statement is true or false. Explain to members of your group why you think the answer is true or false.

  1. The Back Street Boys were originally named "The Boys Next Door"
  2. Madonna has decided to give up her career in singing and become a nun beginning in 2002.
  3. Elvis Presley said, "I don't know anything about music. In my line you don't have to."
  4. Rock and Roll music was first approved of by the US Government because of its patriotic message during World War II.
  5. In its early years, rock and roll music was believed to make teenagers crazy, drug-deranged, and/or promiscuous.
  6. Rap music star - Vanilla Ice's real name is Robert Van Winkle.
  7. The Spice Girls have all been trained as classical musicians. Each member of the group is not only a wonderful singer, but can also play an instrument at a professional level.
  8. In 1994, singer/musician Paul McCartney sent back his razor, shaving cream, and other products to the Gillette Co. to protest the manufacturer's use of animals in the product testing.
  9. Luciano Pavarotti can't read music.
  10. The Red Hot Chili Peppers are based in Spokane, Washington where they grew up.

Go to the next page for the answer key.

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