There are teachers like the one actor Ben Stein plays in “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” and then there are teachers like Jake Scott.
Scott is a math teacher at Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Md., who is known in his classroom and online as “2 Pi” — a play on the popular rapper 2 Chainz. As 2 Pi, Scott helps students get into the fun side of math, so much so that they forget they’re learning algebra.
2 Pi’s addictive song, “Quadratic Formulatic” — a parody of 50 Cent’s “In Da Club” —will have you dropping a nonstandard number “like it’s hot.”
While Scott is definitely having fun with his hip-hop math lessons, he takes his job as a teacher very seriously.
He recently explained his motivation for creating the 2 Pi persona in a story on NPR.
About three years ago, Scott started infusing rap into his lessons. His alias comes from a math formula, and as 2 Pi the rapping math teacher, Scott makes learning math cool, while also developing a connection with his students.
"Students are bored so quickly," Scott tells NPR's David Greene. "You know, the videos that they watch — they see one person on the screen for more than five seconds, and they're like, 'I'm tired of this guy already,' you know? So I think that I gotta jump around [and] include commercials in there where I'm addressing their personal behavior, I'm addressing relationships, [and] I'm addressing respect for their parents. And I think that all those things have to happen in order for me to maintain the students' attention."
For more fun ways to infuse creative lessons in the classroom, take a look at these examples of schools using videos as learning tools.