This is an activity that I created for my American History class that can be done in the classroom or in the computer lab (need access to YouTube).
Students listen to 6 songs (titles listed below) and are to analyze the songs in a graphic organizer and then complete a reflection. They should be able to compare and contrast the lyrics/tones from some of the popular songs of the 1950s. Then I follow up the activity with a discussion about the music/tones/lyrics.
Lyric sheets are provided for each of the 6 songs:
"Johnny B. Goode" - Chuck Berry
"Jailhouse Rock" - Elvis Presley
"Rock Around the Clock" - Bill Haley and the Comets
"Walk the Line" - Johnny Cash
"La Bamba" - Ritchie Valens
"Tutti Frutti" - Little Richard
Great follow up YouTube clip:
Top 10 Decade Defining Songs: 1950s
Please Check Out My Other Music Analysis Activities:
Activity: Music Analysis - 1920s & 1930s "Roaring Twenties & Great Depression"
Activity: Music Analysis - 1960s "Rock and the British Invasion"
Activity: Music Analysis - 1970s "Era of Disco and Evolution"
Activity: Music Analysis - 1980s "A Little Rock, But a Lot of Pop"
Activity: Music Analysis - 1990s "Alternative Music Becomes Popular"
Activity: Music Analysis - Vietnam Protest Songs