Schoolhouse Rock

Many of us grew up on School House Rock.   I am thankful that these videos are still accessible.

For those not familiar with this “institution”, here is the history of their creation.   (excerpts from article found here: 

Before “Schoolhouse Rock” became a staple of American childhood in the 1970s and 1980s, Dorough was working as a jazz musician in New York City. David B. McCall—who co-founded the Madison Avenue advertising agency McCaffrey and McCall—commissioned the piano man and several others to build on his own intriguing solution to an academic problem.

His children couldn’t remember their multiplication tables, but they knew all of the lyrics to a full catalogue of rock ‘n’ roll songs. If the challenging math could be set to music, he hypothesized, the children might have more success in learning the lesson.

Whereas others working on the request dumbed down the music, Dorough explained that he purposefully went in the opposite direction.

“McCall called some jingle writers and asked them to try the project,” Dorough said. “They thought it should be a simple material. I was highly inspired to create more complex stuff. I put more confidence in the children’s ability to learn through music.”

The first song was “Three Is a Magic Number.” The tune was a hit with children and did, in fact, aid in the learning process. The original LPs were marketed and sold to libraries until illustrator Tom Yohe proposed the idea of setting the songs to equally engaging animation.

McCaffrey and McCall took on the project, pitching it to ABC.

The rest is television history.!

This YouTube link is to a channel with many of the videos.