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Continuing Education

Hip Hop Literacy in the Classroom

Date: 9:00am PDT August 13, 2019 Location: Jefferson High School, 5210 N Kerby Ave, Portland, OR 97217

Jefferson High School, 5210 N Kerby Ave, Portland, OR 97217

“If hip-hop has the ability to corrupt young minds, it also has the ability to uplift them.” KRS-One, Emcee and Hip-Hop Scholar.

Whether on the bus, on the street, or in the hallway, it’s commonplace to see a set of earbuds glued to the heads of our students.

With a history dating back to the 1970’s, hip hop continues to be at the forefront of popular music for young people in 2019. How can educators leverage the powerful connection our students have with hip-hop music—including its history and culture—and bring it into our classrooms?

Beginning at the origins of the genre, participants will collide their story with hip-hop’s story through writing and building curriculum. Learn how you can bring the hip-hop ethic of reclaiming the public space for the common good into literacy.

Each day will be run as a writing workshop with participants reading, discussing and “raising the bones” in models from both local (Mic Crenshaw, Lisa Vasquez, Mic Capes, Glen Waco, Serge Severe, Vursatyl) and global hip-hop artists. Elements of storytelling, narrative writing, poetry and rap will be explored in this class.

By the end of the course, participants should be able to do the following:

  1. Use hip-hop lyrics as mentor text for personal narrative, poetry, and essay writing.
  2. Work in a content/grade group to develop curriculum for classroom use
  3. Participate in ongoing conversations about the unique needs of students
  4. Use multiple mini-lesson writing strategies
  5. Identify local hip-hop artists and invite them into classrooms
  • The Oregon Writing Project (OWP) is a collaboration program between Lewis & Clark and metropolitan or rural area schools and districts, and offers programs designed to improve the writing of Oregon’s K-12 students and teachers. 

Course Information & Registration

Dates: Tuesday-Friday, August 13-16, 2019, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. (Friday class 9 a.m.-noon)
Instructors: Nancy Arteaga, MEd, Jesse Gardner, MAT

  • We are committed to making our events accessible to all needs and abilities. When registering, let us know your access needs. Please contact us at 503-768-6040 or with questions.

    Please note: Student registrations are for current students only and do not include continuing education credit (CEU/PDUs)

Graduate Continuing education credit: CEED 839, 1 semester hour, $350 
Continuing education credit registration form (PDF)

Noncredit: $250, includes 15 PDUs or Washington Clock Hours. Alumni save 20%

Register now

  • New events are added to our calendar regularly. For the latest on events related to your specific interests, sign up to receive periodic updates by email and/or mail.

About the Instructors

Jesse Gardner, MAT, currently teaches language arts at Madison High School in Portland. He will complete the Certificate in the Teaching of Writing with OWP this spring. Education to him is all about awakening the genius inherent in every person, and one way he likes to awaken genius is through writing and freestyling raps.

Nancy Arteaga, MEd is a language arts teacher at Lane Middle School. She is an Oregon Writing Project coach.


Image by Roy Blumenthal