By now, you’ve likely seen, or at least heard, the video-gone-viral of a teacher revamping Cardi B.’s “Bodak Yellow” to successfully teach a geography lesson to her young students. What you may not have known is who she is, so REVOLT TV sat down with the musically-inclined mentor.
Having taught Math, English, and now History, Erica Buddington has already taken on several roles at Capital Preparatory Harlem Charter School, of which REVOLT TV Chairman Sean “Diddy” Combs is co-founder. The 29-year-old, who admits to having always had a passion for both poetry and hip-hop, says she began incorporating the art forms into her lessons three years ago to “phenomenal” response. She’s already used Desiigner’s “Panda” to teach figurative language.
“When I first started teaching, I was given a scripted curriculum and the curriculum was great, however, I noticed that all of my students weren’t retaining it,” Buddington said. “They have several different learning styles, and so I needed to get the students who were audio and visual [learners], so I started integrating media, as well as songs, to help them remember certain things and certain concepts.”
She now spends 15 minutes of her courses guiding students in memorization, and opted for Cardi B.’s smash hit after recognizing the kids were both fans of, and distracted by, it.
“I’m young, so I’m pretty familiar with the song and my students were…in my classes and they were tapping the beat and I could recognize the beat. I knew exactly what they were tapping. And if I said anything that was, like, about shoes or something bloody, they would just be like ‘Bloody shoes!’ in the middle of class. So I’m like, oh my gosh, I have to figure out how to revamp this so they can retain these continents and these oceans and these hemispheres and stop just yelling out random items from this song.”
The effort not only spread across the internet, but across the school, as well; despite deliveirng the lesson to sixth graders, both seventh and eighth graders are now rapping the revamped lyrics, according to Buddington.
Next up? Yo Gotti and Nicki Minaj’s “Rake It Up” for a math class.
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