The New York Times is holding its third annual Year In Rap student competition. In 12-16 lines, students write about some aspect of the year in news. Last year, the Current Events seminar submitted a rap and were one of the group winners. This year, the Current Events class tackled 2013, as did the five sections of U.S. History. Relive 2013 through the Year in Raps below and check the New York Times’ Learning Network Blog in the coming weeks for the winners. Also, take a look at the original 2013 The Year in Rap video, from Flocabulary, the leaders in educational hip-hop.

 Current Events Class

In 2013 we lost Chavez and Mandela
The world mourned with South Africa and Venezuela
US government dealt out many a furlough
At least Pope Francis cared about the poor though
Syrian executions and weapons were horrors
Pollution in China forced people indoors
An album was dropped by Beyonce
But we still don’t know, What Does the Fox Say?
We watched Miley join the twerking fad
And saw the end of Breaking Bad
Instagram and Twitter ruled the universe
Facebook gettin’ ready for a ride in a hearse
New computers can recognize your face
40 million customers, Target disgraced
The hit show Glee missed their handsome lead
and “The Black Angel of Death” came for Lou Reed
–Anthony, Mark, Lauren, Emily G., Ben, Emily H., Tzofi, Holden, Noah L., Quyen, Hannah, Grace, Gabby, Noah S., Jamey, Pierson

U.S. History Classes

In 2013 Sum Ting was Wong–
We had airplanes, hurricanes, and a chemical bomb.

Manning violated the Espionage Act
While in Boston, the marathon was under attack.
Zimmerman was acquitted;
School shootings were committed.
The NSA was sneaking while gay rights were peaking.

The government quit workin’ while Miley was twerkin’.
In Family Guy, we said goodbye to Brian Griffin;
And hashtags had teenage girls trippin.
Teenage boys said hello to GTA5,
While Kendrick Lamar told us not to kill his vibe,

Walter White quit peddling blue ice,
While Ray Lewis and the Ravens took flight.
Katniss Everdeen caught fire,
and Lance Armstrong was proved a liar.
— Isa, Anni, Sajia, Vishnu, Abraham, Sachin, Malcolm, Akshay, Julia, Anna, Redden, Emma, Shingo, Kevin, Irena, David

The GOP led the government shut down
A typhoon in the Philippines and many drown
Dictator in Syria and rebels stay at odds
While the one in Korea threw his uncle to the dogs
Beysus and Yeezus made albums in the same year
Hannah Montana started her twerking career
The world caught fire and Broke Bad
Snapchats and vining made notable fads
NSA spied with big data, and a lie
Ultrasonic focal points make sand fly
3-D printed guns flying 40 rounds each
Google glass busts its stock and is within reach
Dead at 84, Bob Grant, the right wing talker
Driving a Porsche was what killed Paul Walker
Overseas in Britain, the Iron Lady falls
Down South Mandela dies, and the whole world bawls
–Matias, Matt C., Cole, Xenia, Delaney, Chase, Kelsey, Rehemah, Ira, David, Clara, Bobby, Lindsay, Matt W.

Francis becomes the new Pope
The Syrian rebels still have hope
The European Union is about to drown
as the US Government gets shut down
After a fire Dallas Wiens got a new face
And in China they finally got a moon base
Like in Star Trek, we mind meld with mice
But Jade Rabbit was the third ‘cause China failed twice
Drones no longer just for war in Iran
Instead packages come straight from Amazon
Google Glass brings a computer to your face
While like Voyager I, Bitcoin shot into space
Margaret Thatcher died by a stroke
And grief stirred the British folk
Our hearts go out to each Boston sprinter
And Nelson Mandela who passed this winter
–Emmet, Avery, Thao, Mateo, Katie, Madelyn, Dina, Theo, Vidya, Alyssa, Garrett

In 2013, the NSA can now read your text
You might want to consider what you say next
Parties conflicted so the government shut down
And a tragic tornado hit a small Oklahoma town
Pope Francis supported gays
While the Syrian rebels fought for dayzzzz
Al-Qaeda in the Middle East returned to power
While the situation in the Philippines became quite dour
Healthcare website is online
Facial recognition is stoppin’ crime
Google makin’ robots like Optimus Prime
Apple’s new IPhone is now all mine
Walker, O’Toole, Gandolfini and Monteith
Left many people trembling in grief
Mandela and Thatcher left their mark
The whole world remembers their spark
–Audrey, Bronwyn, Brody, Ari, Trevor, Mara, Natalie, Andrew, Kari, Tom, Fatima, Emma, Sam, Christian

Twerk Queen 2013
What does the fox say? Ring a ding ding.

Miley on a wrecking ball, licking a hammer;
Rob Ford smoked crack . . . Chris Brown in the slammer.

To Russia this year a meteor was sent
Causing destruction of the greatest extent.

Ray Allen for 3… BANG!  The crowd sang;
While the Spurs pleaded that the Heat cheated.
A-Rod is not a god because he took the ‘roids for his bod.

Congress caused the government to shutdown,
Obamacare’s rollout; Americans frown.
Snowden, the government’s secrets, disclosed. Dope.
Morsi is Egypt’s first democratically elected president. Nope.
Francis became Pope, while the chemical weapons’ ban gave Syrians hope.

So many disasters, from Typhoon Haiyan to the Boston Marathon,
Cry goodbye for all of those lost, long gone.
— Adam, Jonathon, Eli, Jillian, Eric, Nia, Rebecca, Trenton, Niky, Max, Paula, Zoey, Matt, Miguel, Arman, Anthony

Year In Rap: 2013 Contest Entries

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