Without a doubt one of the most powerful aspects of Hip Hop is it’s way that it can inspire you. There’s nothing like hearing someone spit a rhyme that relates directly to your life, which is why a catchy rhyme can also be a very powerful tool for teaching. I was browsing YouTube recently looking for a way to explain the “quadratic formula” to my little cousin and was fairly surprised by what I stumbled upon.


Jake “2 Pi” Scott, a math teacher at Montgomery Blair High School in Maryland, is putting his vast knowledge of math and his love for Hip Hop into his lessons for his students. Some of his songs include breaking down the quadratic formula, explaining the Pythagorean theorem and demonstrating how to graph trigonometric functions. Scott currently has eight rap videos that can all be found on his Youtube Channel.

All of Scott’s efforts have lead to achievements inside and outside of the classroom. The videos have also done something previously unthinkable: made math cool. He was also recognized by a Montgomery County branch of the NAACP who named Scott “Teacher Of The Year”. Scott says he also wishes to develop the videos into a DVD-based curriculum, and has no plans to leave the classroom.

Music is organization. Students often have a difficult time organizing and recalling information, but if it is in a rap, it is already organized. I love being in the classroom with the kids on the front line.

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