Jazz Chants

If you’re learning English as a second language, you may have come across the term “jazz chants.” But what exactly are they?

In this article, we’ll explore the world of jazz chants, their history, and how they can help improve your English fluency.

What are Jazz Chants?

Jazz chants are a type of English language practice that uses rhythms and melodies inspired by jazz music to help learners improve their fluency. Jazz chants are short, spoken sentences or phrases that are repeated in a rhythmic, musical way. They can be used to teach various aspects of English language learning, such as pronunciation, intonation, and vocabulary.

Jazz chants are often used in language learning classrooms, but they can also be practiced at home or in other settings. They are especially popular in countries where English is not the primary language, such as Japan and Korea.

The History of Jazz Chants

Jazz chants were first developed in the 1960s by Carolyn Graham, an American English language teacher and jazz musician. Graham noticed that her students were having difficulty with English pronunciation, so she started using jazz rhythms and melodies to help them learn.

Graham’s jazz chants became popular with English language learners and teachers alike. She published a book of jazz chants in 1978 called “Jazz Chants Old and New,” which included many of the chants that she had developed over the years.

Since then, jazz chants have become a common teaching tool in English language classrooms around the world. Many teachers and educators have developed their own jazz chants and incorporated them into their teaching methods.

Benefits of Jazz Chants

There are several benefits to using jazz chants as a tool for English language learning. Here are some of the most significant advantages:

Improving Pronunciation

One of the most significant benefits of jazz chants is that they can help improve English pronunciation. Because the chants are spoken in a rhythmic, musical way, learners are more likely to mimic the correct pronunciation and intonation. Jazz chants can also help learners recognize and differentiate between different sounds in English.

Enhancing Vocabulary

Jazz chants can also help learners enhance their English vocabulary. By using chants that focus on specific vocabulary words or phrases, learners can memorize new vocabulary in a fun and engaging way. Jazz chants can also help learners practice using new vocabulary in context.

Boosting Confidence

Jazz chants can also help learners boost their confidence in speaking English. Because jazz chants are meant to be spoken rhythmically, learners can focus on the rhythm and intonation of the language rather than worrying about making mistakes. Jazz chants can also help learners feel more comfortable speaking English in front of others.

Jazz Chant Techniques

There are several different techniques that can be used when practicing jazz chants. Here are some of the most common techniques:

Repetition and Rhythm

Jazz chants are often repetitive, which helps learners remember the language more easily. The rhythm of the chants also helps learners internalize the

apronunciation and intonation of the language. By repeating the chants multiple times, learners can become more confident in their English-speaking abilities.

Call and Response

Another technique used in jazz chants is call and response. In this technique, the teacher or leader says a phrase, and the learners respond with the same phrase. This technique can help learners practice their listening and speaking skills in a fun and engaging way.

Choral Speaking

Choral speaking involves the entire class or group speaking the chant together. This technique can help learners practice their rhythm and intonation while also working on their teamwork skills.

Incorporating Jazz Chants in Your English Learning Routine

If you’re interested in using jazz chants to improve your English fluency, there are several ways to incorporate them into your learning routine. Here are some tips:

Finding Jazz Chants Resources

There are many resources available online for jazz chants, including books, websites, and videos. Look for resources that focus on the specific areas of English language learning that you want to improve, such as pronunciation or vocabulary.

Practicing Jazz Chants with a Partner

Practicing jazz chants with a partner can be a fun and engaging way to improve your English fluency. Choose a partner who is also interested in practicing jazz chants, and take turns leading and responding to the chants.

Making Your Own Jazz Chants

If you’re feeling creative, you can also try making your own jazz chants. Think about specific areas of English language learning that you want to focus on, and create chants that incorporate the vocabulary and grammar structures that you want to practice.

15 Examples of Jazz Chants to Use in Your English Learning Routine

Here are 20 examples of jazz chants that you can use to enhance your English learning experience:

1. “What’s Your Name?”

What’s your name? (clap, clap)
My name is Jane. (clap, clap)
What’s your name? (clap, clap)
My name is Tom. (clap, clap)

2. “Days of the Week”

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

3. “The Weather”

What’s the weather like today?
(clap, clap)
Is it sunny? Is it rainy?
(clap, clap)
What’s the weather like today?
(clap, clap)
It’s sunny! (clap, clap)

4. “Colors”

Red, orange, yellow, green,

Blue, purple, brown.

(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

5. “Food”

I like apples, I like grapes,
I like bananas, and chocolate cakes.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

6. “The Alphabet”

A, B, C, D, E, F, G,
H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P,
Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z.
(clap, clap, clap) (clap, clap, clap) (clap, clap, clap) (clap, clap, clap) (clap, clap, clap)

7. “Animals”

I see a dog, I see a cat,
I see a bird, I see a rat.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

8. “The Body”

Head and shoulders, knees and toes,

Knees and toes.

(clap, clap, clap, clap) (clap, clap, clap, clap)

9. “Family”

This is my mom, this is my dad,
This is my sister, this is my brother.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

10. “Jobs”

I want to be a teacher, I want to be a doctor,
I want to be a firefighter, I want to be an actor.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

11. “Transportation”

I ride the bus, I ride the train,
I ride my bike, I ride my skateboard.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

12. “Numbers”

One, two, three, four,
Five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

13. “Clothes”

I wear a shirt, I wear a hat,
I wear some pants, I wear some shoes.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

14. “The Classroom”

I sit in a chair, I write with a pen,
I read a book, I learn with my friends.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

15. “Greetings”

Hello, hi, good morning,
Good afternoon, good evening, good night.
(clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap) (clap, clap)

Rain (with Video)

Tips for Using Jazz Chants in Your English Learning Routine

1. Start with Basic Chants

Start with basic Jazz Chants that are appropriate for your level. Simple chants with repetitive patterns and vocabulary can be a great way to start.

2. Practice Regularly

Practice regularly, even if it’s only for a few minutes a day. Consistency is key when it comes to language learning.

3. Focus on Pronunciation

Pay attention to the stressed syllables and intonation in the Jazz Chants. Repeat the chant several times until you feel comfortable with the rhythm and melody.

4. Use Gestures and Movements

Use gestures and movements to help reinforce the meaning of the words in the Jazz Chant. This can also help you to remember the vocabulary more effectively.

5. Create Your Own Jazz Chants

Create your own Jazz Chants by using vocabulary and grammar structures that you are learning in your English classes. This can be a fun and creative way to reinforce your language learning.

6. Use Online Resources

There are many online resources available that provide Jazz Chants for language learning. Some websites offer free downloads of Jazz Chants, while others provide instructional videos.

7. Join a Jazz Chant Group

Joining a Jazz Chant group can be a great way to practice your language skills and meet other learners. Look for local language learning groups in your community or join an online group.


Jazz chants are a fun and effective way to improve your English fluency. They can help with pronunciation, vocabulary, and confidence in speaking English. By incorporating jazz chants into your English learning routine, you can make your language practice more engaging and enjoyable.

Jazz Chants Frequently Asked Questions

Are jazz chants only for English language learners?

No, jazz chants can be used by anyone who wants to improve their English fluency, including native speakers.

How long does it take to see improvement from practicing jazz chants?

The amount of time it takes to see improvement will vary depending on the individual learner and the amount of practice they do. However, with consistent practice, learners can expect to see improvements in their pronunciation, vocabulary, and confidence over time.

Do I need to be a musician to use jazz chants?

No, you do not need to be a musician to use jazz chants. The chants are meant to be spoken, not sung, so you do not need to have any musical background.

Are jazz chants suitable for all ages?

Yes, jazz chants can be used by learners of all ages, from children to adults.

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