Skip to Main Content

On the Road: 7-12 Women Who Rock: Songwriting & Point of View



Women Who Rock: Songwriting & Point of View

Suggested grade level: 7-12

This research guide serves as a resource for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum's Education Department course, Women Who Rock:  Songwriting & Point of View. For additional information on the course and for more teacher resources, see:

A successful songwriter must learn to master musical composition and creative writing.  Lyrics often reflect the times while simultaneously employing the use of rhyme scheme, metaphors, and other poetic devices to work in tandem with musical arrangements. In this class, students will explore different song writing techniques by female musicians from the 1960s until now, understanding distinct musical styles and points of view in cultural and historical terms. Students will analyze lyrics by the Crystals, Aretha Franklin, Patti Smith and Nicki Minaj, interpreting meaning and contextualizing perspectives while also dissecting song structure.

Search the Catalog

Click here for search tips and how to use the catalog!


These research databases can be accessed within the Library and Archives.

For Your Students

Online Resources



These resources, pulled from class discussion and selected from the Library and Archives' collections, will help you to:

  • Give examples of ways songwriters convey point of view
  • Interpret the lyrics of songs by applying knowledge of poetry and historical references, especially considering women’s positions in society throughout the latter half of the 20th century.
  • Identify songwriting elements, three major songwriters of American popular music and contextualize songwriting trends historically and culturally.



Archival Resources

New to Archives? Check out:

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Video

Patti Smith performs at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductions, 2007

Carole King performs Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductions, 1990

Rock Hall Video: 25th Anniversary Show

Aretha Franklin and Annie Lennox, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25th Anniversary Show

YouTube Videos

Adele, "From the Artists Den"

Carole King on songwriting

The Crystals - Da Doo Ron Ron

Patti Smith, "Times Talks"

PJ Harvey, Guide to Songwriting
Rock & Roll Hall of Fame | Library & Archives
2809 Woodland Avenue | Cleveland, OH 44115 | 216.515.1956 |