There is plenty of research on this topic. The Use of Music for Learning Languages: A Review (Stansell) asserts that (emphasis mine):
The researchers in this literature review show conclusively that music and language should
be studied together. Music‟s success is due, in part, to primal human abilities. Music codes
words with heavy emotional and contextual flags, evoking a realistic, meaningful, and cogent
environment, and enabling students to have positive attitudes, self-perceptions, and cultural
appreciation so they can actively process new stimuli and infer the rules of language. The
universal element of music can make the artificial classroom environment into a “real”
experience and make new information meaningful, bringing interest and order to a classroom.
One area to focus upon would be the use of music for instruction in grammar. Whereas it
takes little preparation to utilize songs for active class involvement, phrase and vocabulary
acquisition, cultural appreciation, and pronunciation, grammar is seldom considered an issue that
music can benefit.
This author has developed a new curriculum for teaching the Czech language, which has
students learning simple sentences with books of family pictures, singing five-part canons with
grammar concepts embedded in them, chanting the pronoun endings of prepositional phrases,rhythmically moving, listening to different instruments, listening and reading, and having
dialogue with native speakers. This system, the Phrase-Exemplar-based Multisensory Method
(PEBMSM) has been used by language trainers, but is primarily intended to be a demonstration
of the possible uses of music in a language learning context.
Why Use Music in English Language Learning? A Survey of the
Literature (Engh) provides that (emphasis mine):
The use of rhythm and rhyme to assist auditory recall has also been studied, and the multimodal combination of
rhythm, melody and rhyme along with linguistic prosody appears to lead to greater retention (Graham, 1992;
Palmer & Kelly, 1992).
Murphey (1989) provides potential evidence regarding why music effectively assists in lexical and phrasal recall
in noting the resemblance of songs to conversational discourse and suggests they are linguistically processed in a
Music in the language classroom may also be utilized with
an explicit vocabulary and grammar focus (Richards, 1969; Saricoban & Metin, 2000) and used to reinforce
either grammar or pronunciation points (Allen & Vallette, 1977). Pronunciation and phonology are a natural use
of songs in the aid of second language acquisition (Schön et al, 2008), and Leith (1979) states:
…there is probably not a better nor quicker way to teach phonetics than with songs. Phonetics instruction is one
good use to which songs can be put even in beginning classes (540).
The repetitive nature of songs makes them effective use for pronunciation drills (Bartle, 1962; Techmeier, 1969;
Shaw, 1970) and lastly, it is argued that songs contextually introduce supra-segmental features (Lems, 2001;
Wong and Perrachione, 2006), which aids in the learning of patterns for word identification.
Overall, the results are clear in suggesting use of music and song in the language-learning classroom is both
supported theoretically by practicing teachers and grounded in the empirical literature as a benefit to increase
linguistic, sociocultural and communicative competencies. From an educational standpoint, music and language
not only can, but should be studied together.