Elements of Hip Hop Unit (Literature+)

Unit Description: This unit will introduce students to various elements of Hip-Hop culture that include but is not limited to the following: art, fashion, emceeing, music appreciation, and politics. Enrichment will take place through various forms of discussion that will be facilitated via informational text, literature, poetry, music videos, video documentaries, etc.

Students will infuse social elements of Hip Hop that will give them a chance to work on mastery level academic skills that include but are not limited to listening + speaking, critical thinking, critical reading, and critical writing. I think it’d be an interesting concept to infuse Hip Hop music in with the following critical thinking activities:  Socratic SeminarsLevels of Questions, OPTIC Strategy, ECQs based on musical themes, and 5, 4, 3, 2 + 1 Discussion. 

Five Things (Elements of a Short Story) #Flocabulary

As we begin our Short Story Assignment, I wanted to give the students a visual summary of what actually goes in a short story. I found this video on YouTube via Flocabulary. A little background information about the song via www.flocabulary.com: “This song covers the five main elements of a story: setting, plot, characters, conflict and theme. Whether you’re studying a short story, a novel, an epic poem, a play or a film, if you don’t find these five elements, you’re not looking hard enough. With a catchy chorus that’s hard to forget, this “five elements of a short story” rap will get you or your students hooked.” I thought it was a good way to connect the younger generation with the elements of a short story as well as get their creative juices flowing…

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Class in the news after Ludacris announces contest winner [KGun9 News & Arizona Daily Star]

I always tell my students, “put in the work and good things will happen.” As we went into Winter Break, students received some reinforcement to that notion as well as a little press for a competition in which they all participated in [read more about competition]. Although there could only be one winner, they all enjoyed hearing about their class as well as school in the news. They also, of course, enjoyed receiving a special shout out from Ludacris (see here). Above is footage from KGun9 News, and I was also able to find an article on the Arizona Daily Star. I didn’t have any luck finding KVOA Channel 4’s news article and/or footage, but we appreciate them as well. All in all, it was a good way to end 2013. I’m glad the news was able to shine some light on such positivity as well as help me reinforce that notion that working hard actually paying off. Looking forward to an even better 3rd & 4th Quarter in 2014…

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