I need a not totally awful song for some ESL students to learn.
May 3, 2011 5:08 PM   Subscribe

Cute kids songs? My Korean school is having another English song competition and I'm in charge of hunting down a song for the kids to sing. I know nothing about songs for kids. More inside.

These kids are not wizards- I work in a very working class city and their English level is way below average. Also, bonus points for "cool" songs, I'm going to have to listen to it about 500 times between now and June 7th.

I listened to TMBG's "Here Come the ABCs" and it's totally awesome, but maybe a little above their level.
posted by GilloD to Media & Arts (13 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
"Yellow Submarine" by the Beatles and "Lemon Tree" by Fool's Garden were great when I was teaching ESL in Korea.
posted by holterbarbour at 5:18 PM on May 3, 2011

Banana Phone
posted by k8t at 5:20 PM on May 3, 2011

Wasn't there a Metafilter post not too long ago about one of the guys who used to be in Presidents Of The United States Of America, how he had gone on to write children's music? I seem to remember he did a cover of Sliver by Nirvana, which I thought was cool because I'd heard it a million times but never thought of it as a children's song. Seems obvious now though.
posted by mannequito at 5:20 PM on May 3, 2011

Here It Is

And that's right, the reason this post first came to my attention was that Mr. Babypants wound up signing up here and commenting, so it got sidebarred.
posted by mannequito at 5:22 PM on May 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

something from school house rock. look at school house rock! rocks for some mid-90s arrangements.
posted by nadawi at 5:23 PM on May 3, 2011

TMBG's NO! is a great place to start, it's less 'academic' than the 'Here comes' albums, and sooo much fun, I bought it for my then 3yo partly because I was hoping we'd both be able to listen to it a lot. It worked.
posted by pupdog at 5:37 PM on May 3, 2011

I taught We Will Rock You to a classroom of fifty Chinese sixth graders. They kept the beat by pounding in unison on their desks. It was fantastic. They performed the song for the school's English festival and brought down the house.
posted by WaspEnterprises at 5:49 PM on May 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

Songs for Wiggleworms has a few good songs. Some standards, some not so familiar.

One of my faves: If All Of The Raindrops
posted by nightwood at 6:43 PM on May 3, 2011

Some of the Wiggles songs are still bearable after I've heard them a thousand times. Hot Potato or Fruit Salad maybe?
posted by AmbroseChapel at 6:47 PM on May 3, 2011

Woody Guthrie is your friend. Just about any song of his is child-friendly, and simple enough to be sung easily (he said when he was lazy he'd sing entire songs to a single chord).
posted by heigh-hothederryo at 8:52 PM on May 3, 2011

I feel your pain (fellow ESL teacher in Korea) - can't say I've had this problem yet, but consider anything in the Tiny Toons or Animaniacs mindset - Youtube is probably your friend here :) Do you remember Square One?
posted by chrisinseoul at 8:47 AM on May 4, 2011

Freddy Bear by Ralph's World.
posted by dobbs at 7:13 PM on May 9, 2011

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