This interdisciplinary reference guide will interest and engage both teachers and students as it examines the origins and inspiration for contemporary song lyrics. This media literacy resource will facilitate meaningful classroom discussions, promote critical thinking, and stimulate further inquiry. The variety of primary and secondary sources referenced in this multimedia guide will enable teachers to differentiate instruction while preparing students for constructed response and document based questions.

Popular songs can be used in a classroom setting to illuminate a particular theme or topic leading students to new insights and understandings. Songs create an emotional hook in the classroom environment and may be used as a means to introduce visual art, poetry, literature, historic documents, film, photographs, and other primary sources.

In each song entry you will find information including artists' commentary, discussion of corresponding songs, referenced and related works for study and comparison, music and lyric resources, discography, examples of student work and sample constructed response classroom activities.


Enter the song guide by clicking on each song title below:



Let It Be *


In My Life* (ESL learning activity)

Biko / Sun City

Fragile / Superman

American Triangle

Each Small Candle

Don't Tread On Me

War / Buffalo Soldier

The Last Resort / Freedom

Don't Give Up  /  Dust Bowl

Kevin Carter / Universal Soldier

Nebraska / Sympathy For The Devil

Southern Man /  Sweet Home Alabama / Ronnie and Neil

Jeremy / I Don't Like Mondays / Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door

Born In The U.S.A. / This Land Is Your Land / Megalomaniac

Ohio / Chicago / Alice’s Restaurant / For What It's Worth / He Got Game

What's Really Going On (Strange Fruit) / The Way It Is / Pride (In the Name of Love)

( Don't Fear ) The Reaper / Fade To Black / Hold On / Adam's Song/ Vincent / American Pie / Hate Me

The Needle and the Damage Done / Perfect High / Under the Bridge / Puff, the Magic Dragon / That Smell

Another Day In Paradise  /  What It's Like  /  Where Is the Love? / Wide Awake / The Revolution Starts Now


* Entries created and submitted by Christopher Chase

 Johnathan Chase / M.U.S.I.C., Inc. Publications 2004 -2007

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