This lesson looks at 9/11 through the lens of songwriters and asks students to listen to the songs as they read the lyrics and then answer open-ended, thought provoking questions that allow students to express themselves while also encouraging a more literal reading of each song. The overall point is to help students recognize the emotional impact of September 11th and to see it from a variety of perspectives.
I like to do this with students in small groups so they can share their thoughts. Omit songs based on the length you would like the activity to be.
I’ve tried to include a wide range of music and you get September 11th related songs (embedded youtube.com videos in a Power Point presentation) from:
• Imagine Dragons
• Allen Jackson
• Melissa Etheridge
• Living Colour
• The Cranberries
• Neil Young
• My Chemical Romance
• Toby Keith
• Taylor Hicks
You also get:
• A packet of lyrics that includes lyrics for each song
• A sheet of background information on each song and artist along with two-four open ended critical thinking questions about the song.
• A summarizing activity sheet that asks the students to look at the totality of the nine songs
• A few tips for teachers
Your students may also benefit from my other resources:
9/11: America in the Middle East Map with explanations, questions & quiz
ISIS: CNN Video with two quizzes & background information
9/11 Cause & Effect Graphic Organizer with questions & quiz 11 x 17"
9/11 CD Cover: Students Create a CD Cover of 9/11 Music
The Past is a Blast