Teaching the History of Popular Music


Return to: ETAP 623 Spring 2017 | Leigh Olivari

Course Overview

The purpose of this course is to show you how to teach students about the development and history popular music, dating back to the 1950s. This will be the focus of first three units. We will learn about a few different artists from each decade. Unfortunately, we will not be covering every artist from the decade, but each lesson will feature a list of the artists not covered in the lesson. You will pull from this list to complete your final project. In addition, each lesson will also provide examples of what is considered appropriate content and what is considered inappropriate content for each of the featured artists. At the end of each lesson, there will be a brief quiz about the material. One test will be given at the end of the units, covering content from both the lessons in that unit. In the fourth unit, we will cover how to use Google Docs and Google Slides as a part of everyday General Music lessons. There will not be a test or quiz in Unit 4, as this is where you will work on your final project.

Final Project

At the end of the course, you will be asked to put together a Sample Lesson that you could use in your classroom. You will pick an artist(s) from any of the six decades covered during the course. You will come up with a lesson plan, put together a presentation using Google Slides to aid in teaching the lesson, and create documents on Google Docs for the purpose of note taking.


Performance Objectives

By the end of this course, learners will be able to:

  1. identify the important genres for each decade
  2. identify appropriate content (music videos and/or songs) to showcase as examples during lessons
  3. be able to incorporate the programs Google Docs and Goodgle Slides into their lessons as a means of enhancing the classroom experience

Units and Lessons


Lesson 1 - Welcome and Course Layout

Unit 1: The 1950s and 1960s

Lesson 1 - The Early Days of Rock
Lesson 2 - The British Invasion

Unit 2: The 1970s and 1980s

Lesson 1 - Pop and Hard Rock
Lesson 2 - Dance Revolution

Unit 3: The 1990s and 2000s

Lesson 1 - The Age of Boy Bands
Lesson 2 - Music of Today

Unit 4: Using Google Docs and Google Slides

The time has come to begin work on your final project. As such, the two lessons will focus on the programs you will need to accomplish this - Google Docs and Google Slides.

Lesson 1 - Working with Google Doc
Lesson 2 - Working with Google Slides