Rapper-Turned-Teacher Wants His Students Head to Swell With Knowledge

Matthew Duncan teaches an after school outreach program and they are using the elements of Hip-Hop to engage the students.

Matthew Duncan works vigorously to teach his Ottawa Hills High School pupils about graffiti, emceeing (motivational rap), breakdancing, deejaying, which are the four main “elements” of hip-hop culture.
Matthew, aka Monk Mattheus, understands that hip-hop is a culture and not just a style of music, thanks to his membership in a Grand-Rapids, Michigan-based rap group, The Swollen Headz.
“Because hip-hop is a culture, not a style of music, the purpose of that culture when it came into being was to better the community,” said Monk. “That’s what has become lost once rap music became a product that was bought and sold.”
So, Monk focuses on a curriculum that investigates the elements of hip-hop, to get the students primed for any type of job, in any industry.
Monk Mattheus uses his experience in the business to expose the students to different ways of thinking, utilizing Hip-Hop culture as an entry point.
“We want you to be able to be a quality person, get a quality job, raise a quality family, and do it all as a hip-hop cultural (person),” Monk Mattheus said