As a science instructor, I was driven to charge up my middle and high school students like so many electrons in a cloud of atomic energy, bringing clarity to the sometimes confusing caverns of chemistry, the finer points of physics, and the bowels of biology. Then on many nights and weekends, I would trade my periodic tables for microphone cables as a feverishly prolific poet, comic, and hip hop artist, bringing a different type of electricity to stages as I performed with humor and heart. As these twin careers progressed, I found myself bringing them together.
In 2015, I enrolled in the Teaching Artist Institute (TAI). Through TAI I learned how to more dynamically find opportunities to apply my art form to educational content, how to break down my creative process for both students and teachers, and how to connect the skills of my artform to 21st Century Skills, Maryland Art Standards, and, of course, the Common Core Curriculum.
Entertainer and educator Drew Anderson has spent his entire adult life engaging audiences as a science teacher and performer of hip hop, spoken word, and comedy. Now, he’s bridging those two worlds with two new innovative performing arts-based programs: C.R.U.N.K. Academy and Spoof School.
“Whether it was making up rhymes and raps about multiplication facts or reading a story and teaching characterization by acting out different traits and feelings, teaching with Mr. Anderson was active, meaningful, and engaging!"
Tianna Lanier, Teacher, Summer Arts & Learning Academy
“Drew Anderson’s creation of C.R.U.N.K Academy is an amazing vehicle to quantify emotions and character traits in a way that the kids can learn, apply and grow. He walked them through the process of experiencing each concept to become more self-aware and respond positively to their environment. By doing so, the kids were fired up and prepared for the two performances we did, thanks to Drew’s direction. Drew has created a great program, and I am glad to have worked with him.”
April Kersey, Teaching Artist Assistant, Summer Arts & Learning Academy