Hip hop is more than just music – it’s a cultural movement that has influenced art, fashion, dance, and language around the world. High school teachers across the nation are recognizing the potential of hip hop to engage students in innovative ways. Hip hop speaks to young people in a language they understand, especially for those from marginalized communities.
Here are four surface level ways teachers can include hip hop in their classroom cross-curricular:
- In English language arts classes, students can study hip hop lyrics as a form of poetry and analyze literary techniques. They can even try writing their own rhymes.
- In social studies classes, hip hop can be used to explore social justice issues, such as systemic racism, identity and self-advocacy. Students can examine the messages behind the music and discuss how hip hop can be a vehicle for activism and social change.
- In physical education classes, students can learn new hip hop dance moves and explore the cultural significance of hip hop dance.
- Programs like the Hip Hop Project in Toronto teach students how to write and produce their own hip hop music while developing their literacy and critical thinking skills.
It’s important for teachers to be respectful of hip hop culture and provide a safe and supportive environment for students to explore their creativity and identity through hip hop. By incorporating hip hop into their lessons, teachers can help students develop literacy, critical thinking, and creative skills