The Rock Hall Education Department teaches over 20,000 K-12 students every year through our Rockin’ the Schools programming. These hour-long classes, which cover topics from the history of hip-hop to the science of sound, teach the rich history of rock and roll, while meeting and exceeding educational content standards in areas like social studies, science, mathematics, and the language arts. It’s amazing to watch learning come alive for the students who visit us at the Museum.
A group of ten middle school students from Hawken School, led by teacher, Tim Desmond, worked in residence at the Rock Hall as part of an experimental Insights Course offered at the school. The students spent three full days at the Museum, attending Rockin’ the Schools classes, exploring exhibits, and working together on self-directed research projects. Participants even got the chance to interview members of the Education Department on topics ranging from hip-hop to heavy metal. These interviews were later used in short documentaries developed and produced by the students themselves.
It was an honor to work with such thoughtful and engaged students and exciting to watch their progress over the three days of their stay. I was continually impressed by the quality of their work (as was rest of the Ed. Dept.). I think some of the students even surprised themselves. Their teacher had nothing but good things to say. “This was the most rewarding experience I've had as an educator because it allowed students to pursue a passion, work with a child from another grade level, and produce a documentary which incorporates many important study skills, such as teamwork, organization, time management, and persistence. And it rocked!"
Just last week, I was able to watch all five student documentaries. It was a treat to see each final product. Again, I was impressed by the work that went into each film. I even learned a few things. You can watch a “behind-the scenes” look at their interviews here.
Rock and roll can be a powerful force in the classroom. Imagine what can happen when that classroom is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.