Adrian Perez believes Kanye West can inspire and teach young students to think outside of the box.
This is why the fourth-grade teacher at McCabe Elementary School in Mendota, California and avid West fan decided to create a Kanye West-themed space in his classroom.
“I teach my students to dive deeper in their thought process, and to use real world connections, and to think outside of the box,” Perez told Good Morning America. “I just thought, ‘Let me break the pavement and be innovative, and pull off this Kanye West classroom theme.’”
Perez turned lyrics from West’s hottest tracks into positive and motivating displays for the walls. He included songs like “Good Life,” “On Sight,” “Power,” “Touch the Sky” and “Champion.”
“The first thing the students see when they walk into my class is a red door that reads ‘Welcome to the Good Life’ with the Graduation Bear ornament nailed on,” he said. “From 8 a.m. to 2:35 p.m., these students are my kids. I want them to feel welcomed when they walk into my class.
Perez used “Champion” as a motivational theme for a “writing wall.”
“Throughout the school year my students will have several writing assignments. These writings are stories written by champions.”
The entire classroom took Perez about a month to complete. He said most of his students did not know who West was prior to coming to his classroom.
“When the kids walked in the first day of school, they were like, ‘Wow! It looks cool!’” Perez recalled to GMA. “Then several questions followed. ‘Why is everything red? Why are there a bunch of bears? Mr. Perez, do you like bears? Are these red chairs ours?’ The kids did not get it, they just thought I liked the color red and bears.”
He said parents who toured his classroom where impressed after he explained in detail the concept behind the classroom.
“They were impressed and were excited for me to teach their child. Some of the parents got it right away when they saw the graduation bear on my door. It was all smiles,” he added.
Perez said he aspires to be the “Kanye West of teaching.”
“Kanye West is one of the most influential people in the world and is the best at what he does,” he said. “To elaborate, I want to be a positive influence to my students and be the best teacher I can be for them.”