The Rappin’ Mathematician CD

The TRM Story

The Rappin’ Mathematician CD (available at www.mathraps.com) offers teachers and parents an innovative way to engage students of all ages with basic math concepts, from decimals to lines to fractions – and provide some valuable life lessons in the process.

The CD was born after middle school teacher Alex Kajitani, seeking ways to inspire his inner-city students to engage with math, started rapping about math concepts. The rap songs were a hit, students throughout the school started singing the catchy lyrics, and Kajitani’s district test scores shot up. After trying out his math raps in low-performing schools in two different school districts and finding the same enthusiastic reaction from students, teachers, and parents, Kajitani decided to trademark his math-rappin’ character, The Rappin’ Mathematician (TRM), and produce a professional CD.

The Rappin’ Mathematician CD offers songs with easy ways to remember pivotal math concepts, such as improper fractions (“if it’s bigger on the topper, it must be improper”) and adding or subtracting decimals (“line up the dot, and give it all you got!”). In addition, the CD includes lyrics and songs with values-driven social messages, such as making smart decisions and not believing everything on TV.

Kajitani, a rap fan with a Bachelor’s degree in sociology and a Master’s degree in educational curriculum and instruction, believed it was important to make the raps “authentic” to really connect with his students. This means that, along with the math, the songs include mentions of TRM’s neighborhood and mixed ethnicity, as well as stories of how he lives his life. “I knew it had to be real for the kids to buy into it,” Kajitani said. “The math is in there, but so is rap culture, which allows them to listen to it, learn and still feel ‘cool.’”

The Rappin’ Mathematician CD is the first of its kind on the market. Since its release last summer, TRM has appeared on KPBS, KUSI news, and in the San Diego Union-Tribune, Teacher Magazine Web Watch, NEA Today and more. Kajitani, who was just named Middle School Math Teacher of the Year for Greater San Diego, is hard at work on TRM Volume 2, which will focus on multiplication and will be out by Fall. To learn more, visit www.mathraps.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Do you have a question?
We have several answers!

Search HEM's 10,000+ page knowledge base.

Home Education Magazine

subscriptions available in either print, digital, or a combined format.
(Preview a digital sample.)

Subscribe Today

Print - One Year Sub $26.00
Print - Two Year Sub $48.00
Digital - One Year Sub $13.00
Digital & Print - One Year Sub $36.00
Print US domestic only. HEM is no longer accepting print subs to foreign addresses.

Since 1983 Home Education Magazine has been a trusted name in homeschooling.


RSS Home Education Magazine

  • I Am Open to Conflict, by Nadine LeBean
      Whenever I need to learn something really well, I teach it. That is what has brought me to you today. I need to remember and fully believe what has worked and what has not worked with helping my children to resolve conflict. Even among unschoolers it is not uncommon to hear that people are […]

RSS HEM Notes

RSS News & Commentary

  • Wisconsin Virtual Academy Must Adhere to Public School Requirements
    Wisconsin Virtual Academy Must Adhere to Public School Requirements Over the years, there has been intentional word mixing by some officials in order to draw independent homeschoolers back into the public schools.  Across the board, confusion often reigns as to who or who is not a homeschooler.  It usually lies on the homeschool community’s back to educate o

RSS HEM Resources

  • Hands On Science Kits
    Hands On Science Kits Tumblehome Learning, helps kids imagine themselves as young scientists or engineers and encourages them to experience science through adventure and self-guided discovery. Exciting mystery Adventure Fun experiments Hands On Science Kits All carefully designed to engage students. Learn more about how to engage and satisfy your kids scient

RSS HEM Closer Look

  • Unschooling, what is it?
    Unschooling, what is it? Unschooling, Un schooling what is it? Defining unschooling is a little like describing a color, and every bit as elusive. You can rely on commonly-held descriptions; for example, we generally all agree what blue looks like, but what about cobalt, aqua, navy, cyan, sapphire, azure, indigo, cerulean, turquoise or cornflower? It’s the s