LEO: Papa Was a Rolling Stone

BLUESONG GUIDE DESCRIPTION“Papa was a Rolling Stone” is an epic social commentary about families that struggle to stay afloat when one parent is absent from the picture. This study guide is designed to link up with thematically related texts like Angela’s Ashes, and The Color of Water and Arthur Miller’s play Death of a Salesman.

Mindblue’s differentiated lesson plan is filled with multi-disciplinary activities linking the song to the photography of Gordon Parks, the sociology of the modern family, and movies like the Hugh Grant comedy, About a Boy.


Father Son Relationships

Death of Father


Delinquent Parents

Dysfunctional Family


Point of view




Angela’s Ashes – Frank McCourt

Black Boy – Richard Wright

Native Son – Richard Wright

All My Sons – Arthur Miller

Father Figure – Richard Peck

The Bean Trees – Barbara Kingsolver

Adaline Falling Star – Mary Pope Osbourne

The Color of Water – James McBride

The Sign of the Chrysanthemum – Katherine Patterson

Long Day’s Journey into Night – Eugene O’Neill

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn - Betty Smith

The Glass Menagerie - Tennessee Williams

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