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Using® in the Classroom

Welcome, educators! We appreciate your interest in the Green Book Of Songs By Subject. Our goal is to make this unique reference tool an easy-to-use resource for songs about every subject and occasion, with lesson plans and curriculum-targeted song lists.
Lesson Plans Using Popular Songs
  • Own this book! The Rock 'n' Roll Classroom: Using Music to Manage Mood, Energy, and Learning, by Rich Allen and W.W. Wood. This resource is your one-stop shop for bringing music into your classroom. It not only clearly explains the ways you can improve the classroom experience with music - it gives you ready-made lists organized by purpose, grade-level and content. (Yes, we helped!) It's everything you'd expect from Allen, the maestro of classroom motivation, and we highly recommend it.

  • We're proud to be one of the resources used in two lesson plans posted on the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame's Education page.
    • Lesson 29 is called "Know Thyself: Reflections of the Adolescent Identity Crisis in Rock and Roll", and it was contributed by Karen Bauer-Blazer, Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School, Cleveland, OH. It's intended to help 12th grade psychology students understand the states of identity by analyzing rock lyrics. For songs to use with this lesson plan, view our categories Identity Crisis and Search: Self-Awareness.
    • Lesson 5 is called "Rockin' The World: Rock and Roll and Social Protest in 20th Century America". You'll find a great background discussion of the Rock's role in social movements, a student worksheet to help your class understand history through lyrics, and a list of songs and artists to use as a starting point. Whether you're teaching about Civil Rights, women's rights, unions, Vietnam or any other focus of social organizing, you'll find a matching category in the Green Book. (Be sure to contact us if you don't see what you need. We'll help.) 
    • And check out the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame's other great lesson plans using rock music --you can use the Green Book with almost all of them!     
  • We're excited to share with you an exciting lesson plan called "The Soundtrack of Your Life," developed by Dr. Chris Goering of LitTunes, an innovative website that promotes the use of popular music in the classroom. This lesson, which can be used in conjunction with the Green Book Of Songs By Subject, lets students introduce themselves by finding songs that express who they are and what they've experienced in their lives so far. It gets the year off to a positive start and allows students to practice writing and presentation skills.
The "Soundtrack" lesson was taught by Mrs. Beth Landau at York Suburban High School. Using a group subscription to the® online database, her students were able to search our categories for songs about any aspect of their lives, ranging from sports and friends to more serious topics such as domestic problems, illness, social isolation, etc.

Here are examples of specific categories your students might want to use to describe themselves generally:
  • Geographic: Cities: A-Z; States: A-Z; Countries: A-Z
  • Family structure: Family (various)
  • Recreation: Sports (various); Books; Art & Photography; Television; Radio; Music; Musical Instruments (various)
  • Relationships: Friends; Love (various) 
Students who want to talk about more substantive issues will find relevant songs in categories such as Divorce; Low Self-Esteem; Children & Violence (including bullying); and Poverty. There are also many categories that address emotional states, such as Anger; Optimism; Motivation; and Faith & Hope.
Mrs. Landau customized the LitTunes assignment and worksheets for her class; click here to see her assignment, which included an artistic component via the online social site Glogster. You can also see Dr. Goering's suggestions for lesson enrichment here. We thank them both for sharing their work!
  • A lesson plan created by® and LitTunes that uses songs to teach “To Kill a Mockingbird." Designed for Eighth, Ninth and Tenth Graders, this lesson provides songs for each of four main themes from this classic novel about social justice and coming of age. Click here to view the lesson and download worksheets to use with your class.

  • In response to a request from a teacher, we developed a list of songs that can be used when teaching about the post-Civil War period of Reconstruction. See the discussion on our blog at SongsAbout®.® Categories and Lists for the Classroom
  • Government and the Economy: If you plan to talk with your students about the economy, business, politics and government, start with categories such as Money, Business & Industry, Politics: Politics & Government and Protest. From there, use the "see also" references listed with each category to suggest related themes.
  • Setting goals for behavior: See Teaching Values and Character & Integrity for songs about cooperation and being nice! You'll find songs that deal with school bullies in our category Children: Children & Violence. Click here to see last Spring's playlist about bullies.
  • Physical activity: If you're encouraging sports, check the list of Sports categories. We have individual lists for several sports, such as Baseball, Football and Swimming. If you just want to get younger children moving, see Dance, Jump, Running and Walking.


We Want Your Ideas!  

We'd love to have your input and participation! You're invited to send us your requests. Tell us what lesson or subject you'll be teaching, and we'll post song suggestions on this page.
Group Subscriptions Now Available

Now groups of any size can tap into the® database! Your entire class or school can search for songs using one convenient login from any computer, at any location, at a very affordable rate. Contact us for more information. 

Why Teachers Are Using the Green Book of Songs By Subject in the Classroom

Teachers all over the world are using the Green Book Of Songs By Subject. It's an invaluable tool to find just the right song to connect with students, motivate learning, focus attention and make lessons come alive.
Music can improve classroom results for any subject or activity. Here are some reasons to add the Green Book Of Songs By Subject to your toolkit: 
  • Motivate and engage students of all learning styles.
  • Enhance comprehension of themes in assigned reading by linking them to song lyrics.
  • Improve analytical and writing skills by asking students to interpret and discuss lyrics that are both meaningful and relevant.
  • Illustrate key concepts of any aspect of the curriculum with a related song.
  • Keep students focused on the task or activity at hand with songs that grab their attention.
  • Reset the mood through the emotion of lyrics.
How to Find Songs Using the Green Book of Songs By Subject

Here’s how the Green Book Of Songs By Subject helps you find just the right song:
  • With more than 2,200 themes and sub-themes, we have songs about virtually any subject.
  • Our unique thesaurus has thousands of terms that allow you to quickly find the right category.
  • Browse among related themes using our hyperlinked “see also’s.”
  • Our new “beta” filters help you sort results by one or more popular genres and/or by “hit” status as well.
  • Refer to our archived lists, communityblog and Songs of the Day on Twitter to find songs about currents events and holidays.
  • Still can’t find what you need? Just ask – we’re here to help!