We the People…

I’m old enough to remember the Schoolhouse Rock videos airing between cartoons on Saturday mornings. I really liked (most of) them as a kid. I rediscovered them years later as a classroom teacher and was even more impressed by them. Not only do these videos cover a lot of curriculum they are also artistically impressive. My wife and I are getting to enjoy all the Schoolhouse Rock fun again with our kids.

We’re looking at integrating higher order thinking skills and word processing in one of my classes right now. The following video is connected to the lesson. Reminisce and enjoy!

Let’s share ideas about how any/all the following could be integrated with teaching and learning.

Published by

Clif Mims

Clif Mims is a Christian, husband, father, teacher, cancer warrior, and fan of the Mississippi State Bulldogs and Memphis Grizzlies.

47 thoughts on “We the People…”

  1. I still remember watching the School House Rock video that tells the story of how a bill becomes a law. When teaching students about their government, it always helps to have snappy songs help them remember the important stuff. I could see building an interactive TouchBoard lesson where students could follow a path and take turns clicking on images that went to videos or descriptions of the topic of study.

  2. I love schoolhouse rock videos. the videos present content in a way that is engaging and interesting. I remember watching these videos on Saturday mornings and singing along not realizing I was learning. I implement videos like these into my lesson plans to reinforce the lesson, many times videos like these clarify points that I have already taught.

  3. This would be my first time seeing this and it was very interesting. I see that they used the information about the constitution and made it into a song to help others learn. It’s a great way to become more efficient and effective when recognizing key elements that surround one topic, and in this case it would be the constitution. It demonstrated elements of the United States and how it has emerged from the beginning and it was easy to follow and understand. Overall, I understood this.

  4. I was always excited when we got to watch Schoolhouse Rock videos in school. Not only do they take a boring subject and made it interesting and easy to understand, but also make it easier to remember information. I enjoy sharing them with my son as well.

  5. I love Schoolhouse Rock videos! We always watched these when I was in elementary school. I still sing some of these songs when I think of some of these topics. I am all about using songs to learn, and I incorporate songs every chance I can in my teaching. I used Schoolhouse Rock any chance I could last year, and I would use it again if my preschoolers were learning any of the topics. The songs are so catchy and the kids don’t even realize they are learning.

  6. I have always loved SchoolHouse Rock for students! It really helps to put different things in “kid language,” and in something that may invoke nostalgia, and it is something the kids can be excited about – they love videos. It would be cool to use the videos and a spreadsheet on Google so that the students can record which they have watched and for the teacher to keep up, if that needed to be done at home.

  7. This was great! School House Rock was a part of my childhood as well. I now see how they got children’s attention, with music and colorful images. I will start showing my son the School House Rock videos they were always educational.

  8. I used to watch Schoolhouse Rock all the time when I was a kid. Now, as a teacher, I refer to it and sometimes even sing the songs to my students when they don’t get things and there is a particular Schoolhouse Rock reference. LOVE IT!

  9. I find it funny that my students know about School of Rock videos, but I have never heard of these. I can see why these can be used in teaching and learning.

    I am still pretty firm on Word processing being used in teaching and learning. While students use Word processing they are gaining new skills as well as applying what they already know. I do feel that it is a hands-on learning.

  10. As soon as this started playing, I remembered seeing it as a kid, and caught myself singing along! Schoolhouse Rock videos are a great way to get the students’ attention, and promote learning. They are fun, and the catchy tunes will stay with the students for a long time.

  11. School House Rock was always a highlight for me in school! Everything about the videos keeps you entertained while actually learning because they use catchy phases. I think using videos like this in the classroom is a great way to incorporate technology and get students eager to learn some of the “not so fun” lessons.

  12. I have always enjoyed watching the Schoolhouse Rock videos. My favorites in I’m Just a Bill and Conjunction Junction. They are extremely catchy and full of information that will stick with you forever!

  13. This is such a cute video! Playing videos is probably the easiest way to incorporate technology in the classroom. It gets students’ attention and teaches them concepts without them even realizing they are learning.

  14. That was interesting i have not watched or heard anything about school house rock since i was in middle school. I like how they explain the preamble and keep the audience enraptured. The video puts an entire lesson plan into one short video. The unfortunate part is that the students are more likely to remember information from this video than in a classroom.

  15. I love the schoolhouse rock videos but because with the grade level I teach some topics are a little much. Therefore, I use BrainPopJr which is kind of the same just a little bit more modern. I like BrainPopJr because it has some supplemental aids that go with it that are based off of the video for example quizzes. There is an easy quiz and a hard quiz where all the answers are based off of the information the students got while watching the video.

    1. How cool! Putting that in my back pocket. Video’s are my safe place in the classroom.

  16. SchoolHouse stock is a resource I hadn’t considered! This is a very interesting idea for introducing a topic. Students may be prompted to make a video similar in format to a SchoolHouse Rock video. Using PowerPoint or a program similar, the students could take any historical event and be challenged to create an anecdote or catchy tune to go with the lesson . They could then share it via Google Docs. This would really encourage creativity and a deeper understanding of the event.

  17. I absolutely love the School House Rock Videos! I remember seeing them during Saturday morning cartoons and singing along. As a future high school teacher, I am not sure that I will be able to use them much in my classroom, but I certainly will remember them if I ever have children of my own. I think that it is essential to integrate some form of HOTS into every lesson. Students need to be challenged to succeed and to take pride in their accomplishments. I think that by constantly giving them a harder question to solve or something to create with the lesson’s material, that the students will remain engaged and enjoy learning more than they would through the use of entirely lower level thinking skills like understanding and comprehension. The mere act of trying to rewrite a song, speech, or paragraph on a topic forces the learner to reflect on their own understanding of the topic and relate that to others in their own words, thereby reinforcing the content.

  18. Schoolhouse rock helped make what we were learning in school more understandable. Using technology, such as video, gives the student somewhat of a visual aid. We all understand that there are multiple learning styles.Teachers are obligated to use methods that can satisfy the multiple learning styles.When teachers trigger a students HOTS, students have received the lesson to its fullest.

  19. I am old enough to enjoy a good schoolhouse rock video as well. I believe a schoolhouse rock video could jumpstart a lesson or be turned into project where students would have to recreate a song about the given topic on the back end of a lesson. Word processing using Word, Pages, or online formats can be used to learn to edit or create documents. HOTS is essential for developing creative thinking and thus, developing life long learners. It is not enough to be able recall information. Students need to be able synthesize, evaluate, and produce information.

  20. Some of my favorite lessons involved Schoolhouse Rock. Conjunction Junction and I’m Just a Bill were the two that I remember most. The information is presented in a catchy way where you cannot help but to have the songs stuck in your head all day. And as they loop on repeat, the information sticks. I agree with Kathleen that these videos do work with older students. As a senior in high school, my government teacher showed I’m Just a Bill, and the majority of the class sang along. As far as the 5th-7th grade audience, I tend todisagree with Natalie. In my experience, that age group is still impressionable. If the teacher makes it seem cool, the students will fall in line. I spent most of last year wading the waters of sensitive health topics with 7th grade students, and you would really be surprised at what “uncool” topics they will investigate.

  21. I love almost anything School House Rock! The video was fun and exciting! The message/ introduction to The Constitution and our nation’s foundation is constantly restated throughout the short video. The students can’t be bored with a busy video such as this one. It restates the importance of The Constitution over but with different characters (same message). At the end of the day students should leave with an understanding of what The Constitution is and why it was created. The video is informative and I’ve already started to re-sing the tune in my head. Awesome video.

  22. Schoolhouse Rock videos are absolutely awesome. I still to this day find myself with some of the catchy songs and phrases stuck in my head. I saw most of these videos throughout elementary and middle school. However, I barely remember any math videos. The majority of the ones that I was shown in class were related to history like this one, or English. The English ones are probably my favorite. If anyone is interested in English/Language Arts, they have a Schoolhouse Rock video for just about anything and everything related to grammar including: pronouns, nouns, verbs, adverbs, and adjectives. I believe these videos are beneficial and effective for all areas and all ages. Personally, I am a visual learner. I learn better, or remember something easier when I can physically see it. Almost all students love videos. Not only does it give them a little break from direct instruction from the teacher, but it provides a unique and interesting way to learn something in the classroom. If we truly want our students to be interested and engaged, it is our job as instructors to provide interesting material and find the ways to get them engaged. Showing videos in class related to your material, especially videos such as Schoolhouse Rock, are great ways to not only integrate technology in the classroom, but also provide an effective means of delivering information.

  23. This is the first time I have watched this video. I love it! Kids enjoy and love these videos. I use a lot videos for my PE class. Videos show things that teachers sometimes are not able to do. Believe me, when I have to dance with them, videos have saved my life, there are a lot of different dance choreographies in the Internet. I also teach math in 4th grade and when you are teaching new concepts, you can find many videos in the Internet that explains how for example statistics is so important in our lives. Videos tells stories, images that students will not forget. Our job is to find videos according to the age/grade level and they are going to love it!

  24. I do remember enjoying the Schoolhouse Rock on Saturday mornings. I was not that young, about 11, when the series started but, at the time, the delivery in cartoon form with song was fun and novel. Conjunction Junction is the main one I recall beyond the multiplication episodes. The visual and auditory aspects to it means it was designed to reach a majority of kids.

    By the time students are in high school they do enjoy the occasional stroll down memory lane or enjoy Schoolhouse Rock as a change of pace. It may be childish but sometimes that could be the right approach with the older students.

  25. School House Rock is awesome. Such catchy tunes to hear while learning interesting facts and tidbits. Of all the School House Rock clips I know by heart, I don’t remember this one. Good to know about it now.
    I think if you really wanted to put a twist on using any of the School House Rocks in lessons, you could offer it as a “historical” piece to analyze in either History, Social Studies or even English for high schoolers. Let them watch a selected clip and then have them compare to a current educational video on the same topic. I remember my 12th grade English teacher made us write a comparison paper, an end-of-the-year project. Something like this would have been fun!
    In high school technology based classes or art classes, like one that focuses on graphic design, students could “remake” their own versions for a cross-curriculum project. So many ideas.

  26. I was in love with school house rock! Especially the videos aimed at mathematics! My parents bought my sister and I every single video tape! I wonder if they are online like this one?

  27. I have never heard about Schoolhouse Rock. How fun! I love singing, and I really think that integrating music and videos in a classroom can be engaging and fun! Leaves lots of room for knowledge! This type of video will be very helpful for a learner who is successful by learning audio-visual.
    The only downfall I see to this video is that 5th-7th graders would be uninterested in it. I think that they would think it is “un-cool” or too “childish”. So it would be geared to early learners.

  28. Flashback. I remember watching the School House Rock videos as a child. We were always very excited when a teacher chose to show them during class. In fact, I’ll be honest, I was a little bit excited when I saw we were using this clip. Videos and songs can certainly be a valuable tool for learning. I know there are many such tools available today. Sadly, they do not seem to have quite the same impact or be nearly as classic as the school house rock videos.

  29. I also think that these kinds of videos can be great for introducing new material. In addition, I can see the videos themselves as useful tools to teach or reinforce the basic ideas and concepts of the lesson.

  30. I think that school house rock videos are great for all ages. I teach history and government in high school and they still enjoy these videos as they are catchy and also are good at teaching the information such as this video on the Preamble. I show the video and then we take an in depth look at the preamble and have them learn and present it to the class in a creative way.

  31. I love Schoolhouse Rock. I use these videos along with Flocabulary as lesson introductions all the time. My students really like the one about adverbs…..Lolly, lolly get your adverbs here……

  32. I love these videos and not only are they entertaining but good tools for teachers. They are also useful to help different types of learners, specifically audio-visual learners. Plus, they help to keep the attention of younger learners who may not stay interested very long when listening to a text being read or just looking at a worksheet.

  33. There are some new learning videos around. I found a great rap about Hammurabi but after returning I found it was a pay site with a hefty price and limited videos. I think School house rock is awesome but it needs an update for today’s kids… probably more sex and violence would seem more normal to them.

  34. I so remember this little song. It brought back so many memories of when we had music in the schools. Putting our history lesson to music made history for me very fun. I also remember the one about that goes”I am a Bill on capital hill”. I will have to check NetFlix for school house rock movie because I never have seen that one.

  35. I loved these videos as a child. I believe a video or short clip like this one would give the kids another outlet of learning. It could also give teachers and students a break from the norm. I would always pay more attention to videos that interested me. Used as an introduction or reinforcement, short video clips will hopefully produce a more sound understanding of a complex topic. Sometimes a video can help someone learn a subject better. I know when I was starting off as a trainer, videos allowed me to know what common mistakes to look for and ways to correct poor form better than reading or looking at diagrams could do alone. I think this same technique could be applied in learning anything.

  36. I so remember this little song. It brought back so many memories of when we had music in the schools. Putting our history lesson to music made history for me very fun. I also remember the one about that goes”I am a Bill on capital hill”. I will have to check NetFlix for school house rock movie because I never have seen that one.

  37. Schoolhouse rock has an uncanny way of taking complicated ideas and making them incredibly easy to grasp and understand. I was shown these videos as a child both from my teachers and my parents and I remember always being enthralled with what they were trying to teach. It made learning not only easy, but fun.

  38. I remember this video… it was fun seeing it again. I really think the bets learning occurs when music is involved.

  39. One way that the School House Rocks videos can be used to promote higher level critical thinking skills is to view them as an artifact. By looking at the videos in the context of which they were first released, we can ask the students to answer the question, “what do these videos tell you about life in the United States in the 1970’s?” One example that sticks out in this video is the reference to the women’s liberation movement. In the beginning of the video, we see men voting on the Constitution, and then later we see the mother going to the voting booth, dressed in what appears to be “working mother” attire. This guiding question could then be used to form a constructive response using a word processing program, including images/pictures associated with 1970’s America.

  40. We often watched Schoolhouse Rock in school, particularly the social studies ones, though I do remember watching a few about multiplication and parts of speech in elementary school. These videos are great ways to make seemingly complicated ideas of government and history seem simpler and easy to remember (such as their video on how bills are made into law).

  41. I remember learning a lot about concepts that I had never even been exposed to yet by watching Schoolhouse Rock shorts. Until this day, I remember “Bill” sitting on the steps of Capitol Hill! Through the addition of animation and music, material becomes accessible to a much younger audience.

  42. Schoolhouse Rock is a great educational tool that can be used in and out of the classroom to help introduce, reinforce, and inspire ideas about various topics. “We the People” video could be used to introduce students during a Social Studies activity about how our founding fathers created the Constitution. Even further, the video could act as a resource for a Literacy activity about how students today could rewrite by adding or deleting some important rules/values/beliefs based on their personal experiences. It would also be a great way for students to “take home” this video to share with their families and friends to get them involved in their classrooms. Schoolhouse Rock makes learning fun and appealing to students and educators of all ages!

  43. Schoolhouse Rock videos always make everything more interesting. I do not remember seeing this one. I enjoyed it. These videos are always great for introducing a new topic.

  44. I remember watching this video as a child. Videos like this one is both educational and interesting. I found myself singing along. That was fun.

  45. This is a great video. I could see using it as an introduction/attention grabber in the classroom when introducing the topic. The topic of the preamble has advanced language and meaning, but this segment brings a level of understanding for a child.

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