Saturday, March 21, 2009

The News is Cool Now: This Week in Rap

Flocabulary Launches ‘The Week in Rap’ A Week's Worth of News, Rapped
– Teen-Friendly News Delivery Helps Spark Classroom Discussion About Current Events –

like,'s about time! ...i suspect inspired by E! News - The Daily 10's Hollywood Rap-Up where each week, rapper Infinite-1 condenses all of the top stories into an extremely funky rap now we have that same idea but but classroom friendly, newsworthy (sorry Paris, Miley, & Lindsay!) and fit for TV studios and/or social studies classrooms!

(dance montage mixed in makes it funky fresh)

"A new Web site from the creators of, a music project initially intended to expand students’ vocabulary by teaching them rap songs, is now also making current events more accessible by rapping about them." The new site is called The Week in Rap.

"Every Friday, Flocabulary’s hip-hop artists produce a two-minute music video summarizing the major news stories of the week. The classroom-safe videos are posted on The idea is that students who spend the majority of their time listening to music and watching videos online can now catch up on current events by checking out each week’s post.

Each Week in Rap post contains lyrics to the songs and key words that are highlighted with links to news stories from leading news outlets where viewers can get more information about that news topic. Recent posts discuss such current events as the economic downturn, politics, the Iraq War, sports, Nobel Prize winners, technology and the Economy"

"You have a giant thumb, I see you like to text,

But I text a lot too, so I might be next,

I might confess I once drove and texted,

But some teens want to make that so I’d get arrested,

“License, registration, step out of the car,

Are you carrying a cell phone? I know a lot of you are,”

Lyrics 3.20
"The listener’s experience is enhanced visually with a montage, and links embedded in the song lyrics lead to articles and videos that explain the stories in more detail. Cofounder Blake Harrison told CBS that kids want to learn but many students lack access to news that engages them: “It’s hard to care about something that you don’t know about.”

"Flocabulary co-founder and The Week in Rap creator Blake Harrison believes that learning about the news in this format will encourage students to dig deeper. “We use humor to get kids involved, but the goal is to give them an opportunity to learn more,” says Harrison. To that end, the lyrics to the songs contain links to news stories from prominent newspapers and TV shows.

Flocabulary’s goal for the project is to have teachers play the short videos in their classrooms on Monday mornings. The creators think it’s a great way to focus student attention after a weekend, and also a great way to spark a discussion on current events."

TECH TIP: my county blocks Vimeo so i can't see the vid on the main page...but if you go down to the lyrics below the vid and click download the video comes up as a Quicktime .MOV that we can see and broadcast on our daily news show....

i've also talked to the guys at (they're very nice!) and requested that they also mirror it on teacher tube...that way we could embed the vids on our blogs or wiki's to use with social studies classes and current events discussions. (see below)

but the flocab guys haven't kept up with the mirroring as i would have hoped because thee embed script on the main site is to Vimeo...which again, is blocked for my county.
but maybe if more teachers & media specialists ASK for it they will!~ [wink wink nudge nudge]
~Miss Jones

Additional Sources:
findingDulcinea &

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