Creating Soundtracks for Literary Elements

by: Heather Elouej, Upper School English Teacher
In Shorecrest Upper School’s 9th grade Honors English course taught by Ms. Elouej, students recently practiced paragraphing and identifying literary elements in their latest class text, “The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.”

Students first imagined themselves as creative directors for a film version of the Carson McCullers’s classic, and created soundtracks for her 1940 novel. They creatively engaged with the work by developing an album cover symbolic of the novel as a whole, and by writing “liner notes” for their album, selecting a song representative of at least one literary device in each chapter (i.e. tone, mood, characterization, setting). Finally, the Chargers composed a paragraph to explain the connection between the literary elements at work in the chapter and their song selection.

Students presented their soundtracks during a listening party, each sharing their cover art and a few songs from their playlists. From Mozart to Kendrick Lamar, Beyoncé to the cast of “Les Misérables,” Dolly Parton to Bob Marley, connections were made between the novel and a diverse variety of musical genres and artists.


Pictured are Ryan Majeski ’25 and Josilynn Hart ’25 sharing their album covers and song selections.

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Shorecrest Preparatory School is a private, non-sectarian, coeducational, college preparatory day school for students preschool through high school, located in St. Petersburg, Florida.