What's Your Weekly Theme Song?

  • by Kelly Harmon & Randi Anderson
  • Aug. 13, 2019, 8:52 a.m.

Have you heard the song High Hopes by Panic at the Disco? This is 5 year old Whitten's favorite song right now. He begs for it to play on repeat. I am so glad he did, because after listening to it, it became my theme song to kick off the year! The message is ageless and the vocabulary is amazing. Students will be surprised when their teacher plays this song the first week of school!

Songs are lyrical poems that provide a great way to energize students and practice critical reading and thinking skills. Songs help students establish fluency and comprehension through phrasing, rate, and thinking about the rich vocabulary and meaning. Many songs have layers of meaning and use interesting words in new or different ways. Check out the lyrics for High Hopes. There are so many reading skills and strategies that jump out at me in this song! What is the theme? Analyze the beginning, middle, and end. How does the character change? What does the word "prophecy" mean? What does it mean to be "one in a million?" 

I could go on and on!

In your classroom, have a song of the week. This can be a simple song like "Open and Shut Them" or as complex as a Katy Perry song such as "Roar". Post the lyrics on chart paper or give each student a copy of the lyrics. Each day sing/read the "song of the week". Talk about a different aspect of the song such as:

  • meaning
  • rhyme scheme
  • the author's message
  • word choice

Be sure to relate your discussion to the standards students need to master at your level. I can't think of a more engaging way for students to practice these skills and strategies!

Check out our YouTube channel Karaoke playlist.

Kelly Harmon and Randi Anderson

About The Authors

Kelly Harmon & Associates began in 2001 with a mission of instructional coaching and providing rich literacy resources for educators and parents. Our work incorporates research-based best practices for teaching and learning.

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