Fort Worth, TX

Texas teacher inspires his students by bringing rap music into the classroom

B.R. Shenoy

“Student growth rose. Productivity, it went up. Kids started caring more about coming to school. The attendance went up. Parents were really enthused about coming to different events when we normally didn't see them." — Thomas Mayfield

Thomas Mayfield, 42, is a math instructor at Leadership Academy at Como Elementary in Fort Worth, Texas.

Mayfield's school is a Title I school, which means that at least 40% of the students are economically disadvantaged. He grew up in Fort Worth and went to these schools as well.

When he noticed that his fifth-grade students were struggling with mathematics, he decided to take action per NPR.

Mayfield had the brilliant idea of incorporating rap and music videos into the classroom.

Mayfield’s class raps about multiplication, makes popular music videos with thousands of views, and encourages songs about passing the STARR test, which is an essential end-of-year exam.

He believes that if you meet kids where they are and take notes on what they are interested in, whether it's music, shoes, or sports, they will generate something. It is critical to utilize items that are meaningful to them.

Mayfield's school administration is so impressed with his ability to engage pupils that he is now instructing teachers at another Title I school in Fort Worth.

Last year, he even reached children all throughout the country by producing jingles for instructors to use in Zoom classes.

According to local media, the elementary school teacher has also composed and presented songs about female empowerment, college, and distance learning.

The next item on his to-do list is a music video about pupils having objectives.

What are your thoughts on bringing rap music into the classroom? Please share in the comments.

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