Peliah Haile and Asiya Mohamud – Grade 8 students at Doon Public School

Twelve students from Doon Public School attended a hip-hop workshop with Shad on September 18 at Wilfrid Laurier University. The head of the Faculty of Music greeted us when we arrived on campus for the first time. We were taken to a dance studio with Mason, where we were taught a routine to the upbeat song, “Run The World (Girls)” by Beyoncé. I loved how the exhausting dancing left us peaceful before we met Shad., Learning alongside friends and moving about freely was generally really enjoyable. After the dance, we headed to the theatre, where we met Shad and learned about his background in hip-hop music and his songs.

He penned the words of Eminem’s popular song “Lose Yourself” on a whiteboard. We talked about the metaphors and lyrics that various rap subgenres use. We got to write our own raps after witnessing hip-hop culture. We created raps using people’s rhyme-generating words. The opportunity for the participants to write their own raps, as opposed to just Shad rapping, made them feel included. We all thought it was an effective strategy for engaging the students in his lecture and involving them in their study. In reality, we also had the opportunity to perform the raps we had written independently. Small things like these made the audience laugh and smile. Everyone appeared to be proud of the work they produced with their friends, and everyone was polite and respectful of the performances.

After we were done, we took pictures with Shad and the students from our school. The lesson and the treats we received as we left the theatre were a nice combination. The outing provided a valuable opportunity to learn about the various opinions and approaches to music. If we had the choice to revisit Wilfrid Laurier University, we would do so without a doubt!

#StudentVoice Series

This article is written by a WRDSB student and is part of the Student Agency and Voice program. Student journalists embody WRDSB’s commitment to creating space for students to tell their stories. They are ambassadors for their peers as they share their personal experiences and stories about their schools and communities in their unique voices.