PopuLLar – Motivating Secondary School Students to Learn Languages through Relevant Media


PopuLLar –  Motivating Secondary School Students to Learn Languages through Relevant Media

Comenius Multilateral project  (2011-2014)

PopuLLar is a European Union innovative, education project designed to harness music, the primary social interest of secondary school students, into their language learning.

There is a huge need to motivate secondary school students, to learn languages, focus digital competences and be creative. Music is the key.

I agree with the Spanish partner who found that the idea behind the PopuLLar project is  very powerful, that the project has been  full of energy, enthusiasm and group work. It has gone beyond language learning and offered students a very humanistic approach to team work and creativity.


Project coordinator

The Mosaic Art And Sound Ltd., United Kingdom

Partner countries

Czeck Republic, Germany, Italy, Spain, Turkey

Target group

Secondary school students and teachers,  school authorities


  • A project for secondary school language students to use music as a tool to motivate language learning
  • To make LWULT languages an integral part of the project
  • To produce a full set of teacher and students guides, videos and materials for support the use of the project
  • To test and adapt the project based on initial and large scale piloting
  • To evaluate and complete case studies of the piloting (as examples for replication)
  • To create a complete methodological guide that will include a clear template for replicability
  • To create and complete online and offline workshops for language teacher
  • Creation of a community space for users across Europe to exchange ideas and productions
  • Dissemination strategy to inform stakeholders of results
  • Sustainability strategy that will allow educators to use the project
  • To build a repository of other materials on music and language learning

Project  description

There is a huge need to motivate secondary school students to learn languages, focus digital competences and be creative. Teenagers are overwhelmingly engaged with music, 92% of 14-17 year olds own an MP3 player and they listen to an average of nearly 2.5 hours of music per day.

The project asks students to write their own lyrics to songs of their choice. They translate their songs into the target language they are learning, This requires adaptation to the music of the chosen song. The students then record their song (audio or video) and share it with students all over Europe. The receiving students then have to comprehend the songs and translate into their native language and record their version for sharing.

Students are able to combine their love of music, with creativity, literacy, digital competences, group collaboration and, most importantly, use LWULT languages. This project directly answers the priorities for transversal key competences – such as learning to learn, sense of initiative, social, civic and cultural competences.

PopuLLar is a project that is ‘owned’ by the students. They work autonomously and collaboratively, teachers are guides to the project process.

PopuLLar is designed to address multiple priorities and key competencies within the LLP:

■ New innovative teaching methodologies

■ Motivation to learn languages

■ Learning to learn

■ Raising use of technology in education

■ Communication in foreign languages (focusing on LWULT)

■ Digital competence

Most importantly, the project seeks to bring music into learning as the prime interest of secondary students and an invaluable tool for learning.

The PopuLLar resources are available on the website

Student materials:

Video Guide:

Teacher Materials:

Repository on the use of Music in Language Learning:

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