The Sound of Music Lesson Plan

Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

The hills are alive with the sound of learning with this fun lesson plan on 'The Sound of Music.' The original film will have students singing along with the von Trapps, an activity gives them the chance to investigate the real family, and a text lesson helps to clarify the facts.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • summarize the events and characters portrayed in Rodgers and Hammerstein's The Sound of Music
  • compare and contrast the real von Trapp family to that portrayed in the film


  • 2 hours and 54 minutes for the film
  • 1 hour for instruction

Curriculum Standards


Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.


Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 1-3 above.)


Conduct short research projects to answer a question, drawing on several sources and refocusing the inquiry when appropriate.


Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources; assess the credibility of each source; and quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and providing basic bibliographic information for sources.


  • The Sound of Music movie
  • A worksheet created using the quiz associated with the lesson


  • Begin by showing the class the original The Sound of Music film in class. This can be broken up over several class periods, if necessary.


  • When the film has been viewed in its entirety, give the students 30 minutes to write a one-page summary of the film including information on the plot, setting, and main characters.
  • When all students have finished writing, have them work in small groups and use the internet to conduct research on the real von Trapp family, writing down key facts.

Discussion Questions

  • What differences did we find between the real von Trapp family and that portrayed in the film.
  • How authentic was the music in the film?

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