Dwayne Reed, 25, is a first-year teacher at Jane Stenson Elementary School in Skokie, Illinois, who was looking for a different way to welcome students back to school, ABC News reports.
He created a rap video that has earned him an “A” for innovation. Reed sits at his desk, feet up, snapping his fingers to a catchy piano chord, as he welcomes his new students. Later in the video, he’s dressed as a scientist. Standing in front of a chalkboard with chemical formulas scribbled on it, he tells his incoming class they’ll learn about science and math.
His message is he expects them to work hard, be positive and respective, and have fun along the way.
“I definitely heard from a lot of other parents and teachers and they said, ‘Hey, you’ve done a good job,’ so I’m real happy about it,” Reed told ABC News.
“I think he’s gonna bring a lot of creativity, and I just think the kids are gonna relate to him really well,” she added.
Reed told NBC News he plans to continue using music in his classroom. He’s part of a growing wave of classroom innovators who are using hip-hop as a learning tool.
NewsOne interviewed Austin Martin, a college student who created an interactive vocabulary program for high school students that utilizes rap lyrics. Educator and author Christopher Emdin talked with NewsOne Now recently about how he addresses culture bias and engages students through hip-hop.
Reed is receiving more than praise for his video. He’s also receiving school supplies and winter clothing for his students, many of whom live in low-income families.