“Dance to this Song”, Da Vinci’s Notebook, and writing templates


Hilarious! Ok, what does this have to do with writing though?

Aww man, this song is hilarious. However, it’s not only funny – it’s accurate. Every pop song today seems to sound the same doesn’t it? The repetition of popular music templates isn’t new though. In all honesty, templates aren’t new period.Here’s where I’m getting to the writing part. Stay with me here!

A template is something that acts as a model for others to copy. Some of you already have used templates for web memes (like Y U NO guy ). Or maybe you’ve used a template to make arts and craft projects. At any rate, templates are everywhere, even in writing.

No way. Fo’ real? You’re joking! (And we’re still not on writing yet…)

Oh no! I’m serious! Last year I read a book titled “They Say I Say” that discussed using templates in the classroom to help teach students ways to write (here’s the writing part!). I won’t go into detail, but these templates are really simple and make learning how to write easy, even for those of us that have been in college for (what feels like) decades. One example would be something like this: “The author says __(comment on authors standpoint)__; however, most people would agree _____.” It shows you how to analyze and write papers. Really cool stuff.

Ok, what does this have to do with Youtube and Asian guys singing pop?

Well see, the guys of kevjumba and Wong Fu Productions have figured out the template for pop songs: autotune, 12-bar blues based bass-line, catchy chorus, cheap lyrics (or whatever). They’ve got it covered. And it’s hilarious. Not only because we know it’s horrible, but it is catchy and popular no matter how much we know it’s an empty song. So, check out the video and think about the template. I’ll leave you with one more video of guys that have figured out the template to music (this time boy bands). šŸ˜€



Filed under Daily thought(s)

8 responses to ““Dance to this Song”, Da Vinci’s Notebook, and writing templates

  1. What are some of your favorite parody or satire youtube videos?

  2. I haven’t explored YouTube enough to find my favorite parody, however, your point about templates for teaching writing hits home. I observed a 7th grade English teacher last Fall instruct her students on how to write an argumentative essay. To help them think and to give them an idea on the essay’s structure, she gave them sheets of blue paper that basically had fill-in the blank paragraphs. And on the back of the paper was an example of what the essay should look like when put together.

    AND, I was in Dr. Evan’s short story class and he showed everyone his SIEL Pattern. Excellent idea!

    Templates are great for introducing students to writing essays. Once they develop the skill, students can step away from the template and create a logical structure of their own. Or just stick with the original template.

    • Yea, templates (or formulas) are great. I was reading a book of criticism on Shakespeare’s sonnets written by a renowned Shakespeare scholar and noticed she was using the SIEL method! Templates are everywhere, and you really notice them once you learn them!

  3. I love this! I think templates are a great way to work with beginning writers (I always tell my students it’s a formula — which is my math background speaking — and they feel more at ease with academic writing). The template (or formula or whatever you want to call it) offers us a way to have students write but also dissect what other people do. We can have them take a template (like the basics for a pop song) and figure out how something fits (or doesn’t) with the template. You’sa genius, sir.

    • Templates/formulas make writing more like solving a jigsaw puzzle. Instead of having to paint an entire picture, templates give us defined shapes of the essay pieces and allow us/students to fit them together. I think they make abstract essays a bit more concrete. Or at least visual! šŸ™‚

  4. Oh Yea. Oh Yea. You got it. You got it.

  5. And here we have a literal video of “Total Eclipse of the Heart” that works in this line of thinking: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lj-x9ygQEGA. You MUST check this out!

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