On this page, I will provide links to resources I think would be useful to teachers wanting to incorporate popular culture into their classrooms. If you would like to suggest a link, please contact me using the form at the bottom of this page.
This blog post from Teachthought not only gives tips about how to use popular culture in the classroom, but also explains why we should, and gives details of success stories.
This blog post features an explanation of why teachers should use pop-culture in the classroom, as well as giving some practical ides of how to do it.
Another creation of ‘vlogbrothers’ John and Hank Green (seriously, where do these guys find the time??) – Crash Course features educational videos on the topics of history, chemistry, biology, literature and ecology. Would be suitable for senior students or those of us (like me!) who have been out of high school long enough to have forgotten a few things.
As a primary school teacher, I sometimes find it difficult to find ways to integrate popular culture into my classroom in a way that is appropriate for the age group. This article from Edutopia gives some great ideas for “mini-pop” lessons which can be used with young students.
Harmony Day, celebrated on March 21, is about promoting tolerance and understanding of diversity in our students. In this lesson plan, students explore themes of cultural diversity through the lyrics of popular songs. This lesson would be suitable for upper primary/lower secondary students.
My first assignment for Youth, Popular Culture and Texts was about thoughtfully integrating popular culture into the curriculum. Hopefully this essay will be useful for teachers who would like to do this in their own classrooms.
For those who haven’t used Prezi, it is a fantastic tool for making creative presentations. I’ve only played with it a little, but there are lots of things you can do with this tool that you can’t do with something like PowerPoint. This Prezi presentation is all about how to integrate pop culture into the English classroom.
This YouTube channel features a variety of science-related videos, sometimes based around a particular concept, other times just featuring recent science-related news. Hosted by ‘Vlogbrother’ Hank Green, it would be a great way to get secondary-school students interested in science!
Having trouble getting your students interested in classic literature? This YouTube channel could be the answer. The language is a little colourful, so it wouldn’t be suitable for younger students and you would need to be careful about your school’s policies regarding this, but if you can get past that it’s totally worth it. What I love about this show is that after giving a short summary of the book, the host then goes in to an analysis that brings up some interesting themes and topics.
This fantastic video explains how students are given ‘pop-culture points’ for finding references to what they are learning at school in popular culture. The video is specific to history, but I think this could be used for any subject area.
Using Popular Culture in the Classroom to Engage Students
In this video, several teachers talk about why they use popular culture in their classrooms, and share ideas of how they do it.