Woke Cypha: Say Word

Awhile back, the NY Times printed a piece that basically asked, Are college lectures racist…urmmm, I mean unfair. Are college lectures unfair? and in it the writer explains that the college lecture format preferences some groups (white middle class males) over other groups (every darn body else)

Woke Cypha #3: Formation

For us, an appropriate assessment, formative or otherwise is at the intersection of culture, consciousness and common to our core. We used the video Formation and our CREAD Woke Cypha Element of Storytelling to make connections between Bey’s videos and lyrics and the current state of our community.

Thinkin’ of a Master Plan

As we think about the ways of knowing and being that our new century students embody and the way hip hop culture has permeated our every day lives, we must begin to think deeply and differently about how we teach, what we teach and why are we teaching it. And center our inquiry and practice on what are the students learning, how are they learning and what are the many ways they can show what they’ve learned. This is the blueprint to our master plan. We must stay centered in Paulo Freire’s ideology that education is for liberation and not for subjugation or indoctrination as Brother James Baldwin told us.

Our musical inspiration for this session was Eric B and Rakim’s Paid in Full:

Thinkin of a master plan ’cause ain’t nuthin but sweat inside my hand.

What is the Woke Cypha?

If we were to agree with the OG, GLB that means we must approach our students and our curriculum in a new way, a way that centers them, which means it centers youth culture; hip hop, technology and the desire to innovate and create.

When we here at CREAD sat down to ideate around the kind of lens woke teachers would need to develop to reassess and review their curriculum, we naturally thought about hip hop. I mean, what says youth culture, more than hip hop. We analyzed the elements of hip hop and made a bridge to how those elements could be…should be used in schooling.

ESI & CREAD Woke Cypha Spring 2017

Presents: Woke Cypha Curriculum writing for the Culturally Responsive Educator The Urban Dictionary offers these definitions for a Woke Cypha: Woke: Being Woke means being aware. Knowing what’s going on in the community. Relating to Racism and Social Injustice Cypher or “cypha”: 1. Anything cyclical. If you’re freestyling, you rap in a cypher (one after […]


So, how would we…could we use this documentary in our classrooms? By now you should know your level of Gangsta….and mine.

As I watched so many thoughts ran through my mind.

Small g: Use this documentary to discuss the 13th amendment and the Constitution. Sections from the film could be used as a precursor to a unit on the “60s.”

Big G: Use this documentary in connection with Election Day and the Right to Vote. (Trust me, there is a lot of red meat for you and your students to feast on.)