Using music to help teach research

When I want to teach students in class how to use different research tools (whether online materials, library databases, news archives), I sometimes give them music and lyrics with allusions to historical events. (In my current class, where we're looking at South African Apartheid, I give them Peter Gabriel's "Biko," which is about the murdered activist Steven Biko.) I play the songs, hand out the lyrics, and ask them to use the research tools we've discussed in order to find out what the allusions are referencing. 

Course Name: 
WRD 110
WRD 111
WRD 112
Assignment Type: 
Classroom Activity
Group Activity
Assignment Length: 
One Class Period
Primary Pedagogical Focus: 
Research
Preparation Guidance and Instructor Advice: 

This is an easy activity that is fun (because of the music). If you can show a video and play the songs, that's a good way to get students involved. I walk students through the research tools beforehand. The instruction + this activity usually  takes up a full class period. 

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