This lesson can be an activity that is fun and suitable for a wide array of ages, from middle schoolers to adults.
Ask students, can they share their favorite song? In short, can they tell the class what that song is written about?
Studies in recent years have shown that more than half of the pop songs on the billboard charts are about love. Yeah, that’s right, Love is the most popular theme in songwriting!
Tell the students that in celebration of Valentines Day, you’ll be doing a fun musical activity. You will need laptops/tablets and a wifi connection for this lesson. The lesson is divided into two parts (each should take 45 minutes to 1 hour):
- Either individually or in pairs, ask the students to research and find one top of the charts pop hit song that is about love for every decade from 1960s until today (70s, 80s, 90, 2000, 2010). This is easily found when searching online for “Top 10 songs 1960s”, “Billboard charts for 1960 pop songs” or “Best songs from the 1960s” and so forth.
- For each love song, the students should listen to the music, write the name of the song and composer/band and share the link. You can use any form of shared document for this, or just a piece of paper.
- Next, the students should answer these questions:
a. Of the love songs you chose to list, which is your favorite? Why?
b. What are some differences you noticed between the songs in terms of sound or musical style/genre? Explain.
c. Do you think your chosen songs from different decades would be top selling today? Explain.
2. Once everyone is done with their research questions, go over and listen to some songs with the class and discuss the answers to some of the questions. Next, tell the class that it is time for them to write their own original love song!
- Every student, individually or in pairs, will write a chorus of a love song based on their previous research. The students must use at least one sentence from every song they researched in their lyrics (be flexible, the students may need to tweak the sentences a bit).
- To further explain, the students will be composing the melody to a chorus of a song, using mixed lyrics from the love songs that they researched.
- Give the students some time to work on these songs. Then, get together and have them present their creations. This part is always a lot of fun, enjoy!