Verona teacher makes music video to engage students

Posted: Friday, May 30, 2014 --- 9:30pm

When you think of a music video, something involving Justin Bieber or Katy Perry might come to mind. But, a Verona teacher is taking his love of music and love of reading and mashing them together.

Kyle Walsh teaches first grade at Sugar Creek Elementary. Being a UW-Madison grad he had an idea, take the famous UW phrase “If You Want To Be A Badger” and give it a twist by making a music video called “If You Want To Be A Reader.”

The process started a few months ago. “I started composing a song and putting together a few verses” says Walsh.

Then, Walsh's class and a fellow bilingual class got to work.. “We would practice, a lot of practicing” he says. “There were these other mini projects, over the past few months, where I could bring a small group to campus.”

Many famous faces make an appearance in the video, including UW Football players, coaches, Bucky Badger, even NBC 15's very own John Stofflet.

And after hours of practicing, hours of editing, and hours of out-takes, a rare, relatable, and roaring learning tool was born.

“They'll come in, they'll hum it, they'll sing it and so it's a song that's really caught on” Walsh tells NBC 15.

It's a win for Walsh, a win for his class, and a win for education..

"Knowing that I did something that either engaged their child or as fun for their child or they learned from it, that keeps me pushing to find new and creative ways just to teach” says Walsh.

Walsh was able to pay for production of the video through an education trust. He also used part of that money to get the school a new free little library, which will soon go in front of the school.

To view the entire “If You Want To Be A Reader.” music video, head to:

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