Kids and parents alike should look into getting a free download of multiplication rap, because the children just might be able to learn their times tables in a better way that they'll actually remember. Who said that math had to be boring?
Learning Can Be Fun
Sure, you probably won't be hearing any of these songs being performed on American Idol, nor will you get to enjoy the absurdly frank remarks of Simon Cowell, but that doesn't mean that you should ignore multiplication rap altogether. Before we get into a discussion of where you can get a free download of multiplication rap, perhaps we should say what this genre of music is in the first place.
Basically, what you do is take the same concept behind rap music and apply it to a learning environment. More specifically, the rap music lyrics will pertain directly to the multiplication tables that children typically start to learn around grade 3 or 4. In many ways, these multiplication rap songs can act like mnemonic for young people who are struggling to learn their times tables.
This can be a lot of fun for younger people, but some students may think that it is "lame" to combine the hip hop music that they love with a school subject that they hate. With a little encouragement and some great teaching methods, they'll learn to appreciate how great educationally-minded rap can be.
Bringing School Songs to the 21st Century
For the youngest children, there are songs like "The Wheels on the Bus" and the "Itsy Bitsy Spider", but for kids that are 10 years old, it can be much more difficult to convince them to sing along. Young people are growing up a lot faster these days than they have in the past, and as such, it is critical that you modernize your lesson plans to better speak to this new demographic. Using multiplication rap songs is one of these strategies that will bring school tunes into the 21st century. After all, they may not be as interested in Looney Toons music. If you're going to use music to affect children, you should do it in a positive way.
Here is a short snippet that demonstrates what these hip hop-themed songs can look like:
I've got a little story to rap to you,
And this little story uses multiples of 2.
2 1's are 2, that's plain to see,
There's one of you and one of me.
My pop and mom, now they're a couple.
You add two kids and you've got trouble.
They're 2. We're 2. 2 2's are 4.
We kids were boppin'. I'll tell you more.
Sis and I love pizza, so we organized a party.
The chef asked, "How many? Are your appetites hearty?"
We said, "3 girls, 3 guys. 2 3's are 6.
A couple of pizzas are enough to fix."
Free Download of Multiplication Rap
Finding places where you can download multiplication rap can obviously be a fair bit more challenging than finding more mainstream offerings from artists like Eminem and Ice Cube. There is one fantastic resource available that not only lists the lyrics but also provides short MP3 samples that let you get in on the hip hop download action.
That website can be found at Oak Park Elementary. On their dedicated multiplication rap song, they provide all sorts of resources and sound bytes taken with permission from Sara-Jordan.com. The times table songs go from "Times 2" to "Times 12", covering all the basics that students typically learn in grade 4.
While there, you can also look into all sorts of other classroom resources and a media center with more goodies.