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New program combines music, social lessons for CPS students

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Justin Bieber is not likely the person you’d expect to be the focus of a social studies or history lesson. But the pop singer and his antics are charging a very serious discussion for 8th graders at Stone Academy in West Rogers Park.

It’s part of the new MEMA music program wrapping up its second year at the school.

Jeanne Warsaw is the creator of MEMA music: Motivate, encourage, music appreciation – A new non profit organization tasking CPS students to read current events and music lyrics, analyze, discuss and compare.

The mema program stays away from the traditional text books and lets music lead the discussion on everything from history to social injustice.

More info at

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  • Seriously

    How about teaching ethics, morals, respect and of course reading, writing and arithmetic? Stop all this phoney fluff.

  • Rog

    Ethics, morality and respect is part of this program. Reading, writing, arithmatic is another class all together. The kids become interested in historical facts, ideology and the idea of civic engagement through their interest in this type of music. There was protest music for a reason in the US. They're learning the why and how in conext to where our country was politically back then bringing those events alive like they've never seen before. Kids are discussing poltics, ethics, discrimination, etc.

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