Hip Hop Literacy


Mr. Patrick Parker(Photo by: Mykaela Bell)

By Mykaela Bell

Hip Hop Literacy is not a typical class for Attleboro High School. It is a class that pertains to the youth, far more interesting than some of the other electives that can be scheduled. “I do enjoy Hip Hop Literacy. It is a fun and interesting class,” said Kyle Cameron.

“I like how it’s more laid back and not as much writing as a regular English class. Another thing that is good about this class that the teacher really gets into the subject and makes it more interesting,” said Christian Lugo.

Most chose to take this class. One of the reasons was because the “class appealed to me, I don’t even listen to Hip Hop, but I knew Mr. Parker from numerous people it was a really interesting class,” said Caylynn Paquette. Or “to know more about Hip Hop came from and how it started,” said Shaneta Jenkins.

Most people from his class say that Hip Hop Literacy “was suggested to them from a friend,” Said Brooklyn Palermo.

The class was originally run by Mr. Michael Saltzman, but since his departure in 2014, English teacher Mr. Patrick Parker has taken over. He has currently been teaching this class for two years.

“Students tend to like the class,” said Parker. “Yes, I LOVED the class,” said Palermo.

Even music that our generation has never heard before will probably be a song you will start to like.

The class is broken into three sections: the origins of Hip Hop culture, analysis of specific songs and explore various topics in the Hip Hop world.

In the first section, the students watch interesting documentaries and read some articles about important events at the beginning of Hip Hop Culture. Each section takes approximately two to three weeks.

The analyzing of specific songs is self explanatory. “I think that learning to analyze song lyrics to the true meaning of songs is a good tool to have,” said Ed Ellis.

Students study various issues related to Hip Hop, such as violence, misogyny, imagery in music videos, and the legitimacy of different artist in the last few weeks.

He may also use songs known to the teen generation. Ice Cube is one of the many rappers people recognize in songs made by Public Enemy, which is also one of Parker’s favorites that he likes to incorporate into class “when it is a part of the curriculum.”

To Parker, Hip Hop Literacy is more than just a class for graduation. “It’s a class that uses Hip Hop as a vehicle for improving English skills,” said Parker.

It is worth taking the class because it is relative and interesting. Hip Hop Literacy is not your typical English class and is a highly suggested course to take.