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Monday, February 14, 2011

Lady GaGa, a Possible Role Model to Teachers Everywhere?

As another year’s Grammy Awards come and go, Lady GaGa is still one of the top people to watch in the music industry. So the question is, what sets GaGa apart from her counterparts? I made a list J

1. Her ability to consistently

create exciting, iconic, and memorable songs and performances for her audience

2. The public only knows her as Lady GaGa. Not a lot is known about her private life except the fact that her real name is Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta

3. Her outfits and costumes are always the most anticipated part of the Red Carpet. At last year’s Grammy’s, she showed up in an outfit made of meat, this year, she showed up in an egg-like capsule, with an entourage carrying her.

4. She keeps people guessing.

5. Even if someone doesn’t like her, they can’t help but follow what she is up to. She is so over the top that people can’t help but pay attention to her.

People’s infatuation to Lady GaGa’s made me think about a teachers appeal to his or her students. What could teachers do to capture the excitement and interest of their students in the same way that GaGa captures the attention of her audience? Think about it, what if students were always excited to learn from their teachers? Always looking forward to what the teacher would do next? With GaGa, even the people that don’t like her can’t help but watch and follow what she does. I am not suggesting that it is easy or a practical request of the teachers, but I found a few teachers that are trying to make their students go GaGa for learning and school.

One teacher recommends creating a theme for your classroom.

When walking into a classroom, first impressions can set the tone of what is being taught and how. Classroom themes have long been used by elementary teachers as a way to capture a student's attention, reinforce teaching, scaffold learning from one area to another and create a cheerful environment for study. However, they are also an invaluable tool for upper grades.”

Read more here

Other teachers put themselves in vulnerable situations to encourage their students to not fear stepping out of their comfort zones. Lady GaGa pushes the boundaries just enough to make her fans interested and inspired by her work; teachers can do the same by putting themselves in the hot seat on occasion to show their students that taking risks and opening their mind to new experiences can be thrilling. Here is a blog post about a teacher who challenged his students to give him a random topic to write a Haiku poem about. His response to the experiment was,

“I've found that if I get excited, perplexed or nervous about the process myself, the students get more involved and I become more empathetic.”

I found this last article to be most inspiring. The article was based around teachers that were nominated for American Teacher Awards. The article has different tactics and teaching technics that these phenomenal teachers use in their classes. Like Lady GaGa, these teachers think outside of the box, they take risks, and they don’t always follow the lesson plan. Out of all the things that these top-tier teachers said, this quote from Myra Dietz is most impactful,

It's important to challenge students to have their own points of view, to not just accept something because an adult told them it was so."

GaGa is extreme, and although she may not be the perfect role model outside of her music career, there are some interesting parallels between her music career and a successful teacher’s teaching strategy. I would love to hear your reaction to this connection or any stories you may have about a great ‘GaGa’ teacher.

Thanks for reading J

Until next time,



  1. Great Post, Ali! I like your comparison between Lady Gaga and a good teacher. I agree that the best teachers make you excited about what you're learning by thinking outside the box, and Gaga is a great example of that kind of thinking for many people. I think students can also take to heart Gaga's lessons of being outspoken, true to herself, and unique in school. This way, both teachers and students can get excited about learning, and the subject matter becomes more interesting. Good ideas, Ali! Definitely something to think about.

  2. But she is all craft, no content. She has to show up in an egg or wear a crazy outfit or else no one would notice. What does that say? Keeping people guessing sounds nice, but when that is one's entire persona, nothing really gets done.