We Didn’t Start the Karaoke

May 8th, 2008 by Brian Leave a reply »

First off, I’m excited for this 8th grade Social Studies project.

Students will be creating the next verse to Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire”. (Click here for a history teacher’s explanation of the lyrics. Scroll past the ‘terrific video tribute’.)

What I love about this song is that very soon a new generation of students will come through HJHS and your present day life will be history to them. How would the song sound to include modern history?

We didn’t start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
We didn’t start the fire
No we didn’t light it
But we tried to fight it



  1. Morgan says:

    I have to do this for a year 9 project, but we have to create a new verse for the 1990’s. Its fun, but my history teacher says we have to sing it ourselves.

  2. Brian says:

    Teachers – another way to supplement the history is to have the verses on strips of paper and then have the students organize the events as the song plays.

  3. Collin says:

    This year for History, our class is adding one verse. It’s from 1990-2010. We also have to include pictures and a 1-3 sentence description of the pictures. It seems like a lot of work, but it’s our final exam…

  4. Max says:

    We had no remake this song ENTIRELY for seventh grade. We chose a single decade (I got the 1960s) and we gad to sing it ourselves. Awesome project!

  5. sfriesy says:

    hi . Where can I download “We Didn’t Start the Fire” by Billy Joel in karaoke/instrumental???

    I was directed to this article but cannot find the download link.

    Thank you in advance!

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