YouTube + Disney = language learning gold

YouTube + Disney = language learning gold

Looks like the holidays mean lots of video-trolling here on LLU …

This evening while browsing YouTube, I stumbled across a veritable treasure trove of Disney videos in other languages, and the vast majority of them are TV themes or scenes from movie musicals that anyone born in the appropriate era can probably sing by heart (in English), or at the very least find them familiar. These videos incredibly easy to find; just search YouTube for “disney [language]” or “disney [country]” and you’ll find gobs of official channels (e.g. disneyportugal, WaltDisneyStudiosES, DisneyChannelactu) and unofficial playlists created by YouTubers (e.g. Japanese, two Chinese playlists, Arabic, songs from many languages with subtitles). If you or your students are particularly fond of a particular movie or TV show, you can also run a search on its title plus the language you’re looking for, and you’ll probably get some pretty good results.

Once you’ve found a video or twelve, there’s a wide range of possible activities, depending on what level you are (or are working with). Beginners might pick a song to learn and sing as an audio-recording, in a music video, or live at a karaoke night; intermediates might compare the original and target language lyrics and discuss the differences from a cultural perspective; and more advanced students might take the melody and write their own lyrics, or compare versions recorded in different dialects (e.g. the Austrian German version of “Part of Your World” vs the standard German, as noted in this post). There can also be lots of logistical flexibility; each student can pick their own song, small or large groups can be formed, or the whole class can focus on one video in particular.

Here are a few videos to get you started; if you have any YouTube videos you rely upon in your classroom, or ideas for other activities, please leave a comment!

Gummi Bears, Part 1:

starting timecode for each language:

0:03 – english (original)

1:05 – german

2:00 – polish

2:59 – russian

3:58 – hungarian

4:58 – portugese

5:59 – dutch

6:58 – spanish

Gummi Bears, Part 2:

starting timecode for each language:

0:01 – japanese

1:00 – swedish

1:57 – danish

2:56 – bulgarian

3:54 – norwegian

4:49 – italian

5:46 – french

Duck Tales:

starting timecode for each language:

0:04 – english

1:07 – hindi

2:04 – arabic (egyptian)

3:04 – dutch

4:04 – swedish

5:02 – finnish

5:59 – japanese

6:47 – icelandic

7:46 – hungarian

Aladdin, in Portuguese:

Ryan has been proudly maintaining and contributing to Language Lab Unleashed since 2005, and is the current President of SWALLT. Since the summer of 2013 he's been causing trouble with his all-star colleagues in the UMW DTLT; when not wrangling websites Ryan can be found doing strange things with heavy objects.

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