Photo by Nathaniel Goldberg
Workshop Title: Good Days
Ask your students, “What emotions does a breakup elicit? Why? Try to use examples from your observations (or experiences, if you’d like).” Briefly discuss.
Watch the beginning of “Good Days” by SZA. When you’re done, briefly discuss the emotions of the speaker throughout the song. And how does the speaker attempt to cope?
Say, “Take a few minutes to think about how you cope with hardships, whether that come in the form of a breakup, a stressful day, relationship woes, etc.” Then give your students a few minutes to brainstorm.
Have your students compose a poem similar in sentiment to “Good Days” in which they offer their method of coping through particular hardships.
When the students are done, have them share their responses with one another.
Area of Focus: Various
This lesson allows students to analyze various concepts and skills, so it is recommended that you have covered several of the “standalone” lessons before assigning this one.
Start by asking your students about breakups. What emotions do they associate with them, based on their own experiences or observations? Briefly discuss.
Show the following music video, the first several verses of the song “Good Days” by SZA. As your students are watching/listening, ask them to simply pay attention to the complex emotions of the speaker.
Now watch the following video, a brief overview on the different stages of grief following a breakup. As your students are watching, have them try to make connections between “Good Days” and the different stages depicted in the video.
Have your students open the following document and go over the instructions with them. In this assignment, your students are going to analyze “Good Days” by SZA and determine how the song depicts the speaker’s conflicting emotions and reflects the stages of grief following a breakup. Then give your students time to work.
When your students are done, go through each of the steps of the breakup grieving process. Have your students share their findings with the rest of the class.
If time permits, share the exemplar essay with them.
- Death / Grief
- Figurative Language
- Structure (Syntax)