Instructional Practices

Leverage Knowledge of Self to Engage Your Students with Dr. Chris Emdin

2 Min Read
Emdin hero2

"Hip Hop Teacher Moves" is a video series on Teacher’s Corner, the online professional learning platform for teachers using HMH programs on Ed.

Enter the classroom with a swagger—whether it's in your step or on your webcam. It's time to explore the intersection of hip-hop and teaching!

In this first episode of "Hip Hop Teacher Moves," Dr. Chris Emdin, an associate professor of science education at Columbia University (and HMH podcast guest), raises a call to action for educators, especially those in their first year of teaching: before we can connect with our students, it is critical to lean into who we are first.

Dr. Emdin gave several solid pieces of golden advice in this episode. There's no doubt that mirror affirmative talk is a practice that you can begin immediately. Let's review the key exercises to start practicing your Hip Hop Teacher Moves:

  1. Knowledge of self. Ask the people who love you the most what they love most about you—how are you exhibiting that persona in the classroom?
  2. Unapologetic authenticity. Walk across your living room with full confidence in who you really are—to what degree are you concerned with how you are being perceived?
  3. Persona. Brainstorm a list of words that describe you. Ask yourself, what's your word, your teaching mantra, to project the essence of your presence and guide you forward?

What are you waiting for? Grab your phone and send your text: "Hey, what are the three favorite things you love about me?" As you build a desire to share who you are with the world, your students will follow.


Sign up for “Hip Hop Teacher Moves with Dr. Chris Emdin,” a virtual event, on May 1, 2021 at 11 AM ET.

For deep, connected professional learning support, explore HMH Anywhere™, an all-inclusive subscription that supports teachers from Day 1 and includes ongoing professional learning to meet your changing needs.

Related Reading

instructional coach in a room of teachers

Zoe Del Mar

Shaped Executive Editor

Summative Assessment hero

Dr. Vytas Laitusis
Education Research Director, Supplemental & Intervention Math