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Don't underestimate the power of rap music in education

Joanne Jacobs, an inspiration to many education bloggers appeared to be non-plussed by a recent visit to a Bronx Compass High School by rapper GZA of the Wu-Tang Clan to rap about science. She seemed to dismiss it is "fun, but not sure it was educational". But if you watch the video- really watch the video, you may see something that is educational to the 'nth' degree.

One of the students profiled in the video stated "everything was flowing nicely" (in reference to writing his own science related rap lyrics. "While I was still writing my first bar, I was close to my ending bar in my head. It wasn't that difficult, honestly. I'm good at different topics; not that good at science. So today was surprising to me." Stop the tape right there. This kid was surprised by his ability to write intelligently about science. He removed his fear of science in a simple, and often dismissed exercise of writing rap lyrics about the subject. This kid who previously thought that science was a subject he just had to get through could possibly embrace it in the future.

If that isn't educational, I don't know what it.

And let's not forget, if the most important culture to a student is rap music, and a rapper they admire, studies science, then that student will then study science. Now all we need is for basketball stars to show how geometry and calculus relates to basketball.


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