He’s putting the cool into school

Teacher and rap­per, it’s a suc­cess-story recipe for reach­ing out and con­nect­ing with en­quir­ing young minds Op­ti­mistic sailor set to do SA proud

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - TYLER ROODT WAY RE­PORTER

ATEACHER from At­lantis is putting a new spin on ed­u­cat­ing young minds.

Ru­pert Makka, 26, is a Grade 8 maths teacher at the town’s high school, At­lantis Se­nior Sec­ondary, and his for­mula for keep­ing stu­dents aware of mat­ters which af­fect their daily lives is win­ning him a string of ador­ing fans.

Makka is a rap­per. He ex­presses him­self through mu­sic – and he ab­so­lutely loves hip hop.

“It started as a hobby when I was in high school, but it’s be­come a pas­sion of mine,” said the man from Mamre, a town just out­side At­lantis.

Makka’s pas­sion even­tu­ally led to the re­lease of a song. He per­forms un­der the stage name Chazer.

Through his rap mu­sic, Makka is hop­ing to dis­prove an age-old stereo­type among young peo­ple – that teach­ers are un­cool.

While he is a solo rap­per, Makka also be­longs to an Afrikaans group known as R.E.A.L. (Ready to En­gage and Lead).

His lyri­cal themes are cen­tred on so­cial is­sues, but with R.E.A.L. he tends to be more lyri­cally di­verse.

“I get in­spi­ra­tion from ev­ery­where, stuff I read about, what I see on TV, pretty much any­where.”

Makka has re­leased sev­eral songs and told Week­end Ar­gus about his favourites: Hoe Jy Wil Lewe (How you want to live) and Wat Ga An Vedag (What’s hap­pen­ing to­day?) for which he has re­leased a video on YouTube.

“There’s a re­ally long list of peo­ple who in­spired me to do what I do,” said Makka.

His mu­si­cal in­flu­ences in­clude lo­cal out­fit Kal­litz, an Afrikaans rap duo from the Cape Flats and Isaac Mu­tant, also from the Cape.

Makka says his stu­dents are among his most loyal sup­port­ers.

“They are big fans of my mu­sic. They en­cour­age me daily, so I hope I can be an in­spi­ra­tion to them,” he said. THE fore­cast wind fore­cast for Wed­nes­day was hec­tic – 50 knots.

That has a spe­cial mean­ing for sailors as they rely on wind to power their crafts and it is a re­mark­able ex­pe­ri­ence for them to head out with strong winds.

That’s why with school can­celled for the day, Alex Falcon, 13, de­cided to go sail­ing.

Alex sails for Zeeko­evlei Yacht Club and is part of a team of five Op­ti­mist Dinghy sailors se­lected to go to Thai­land next month to rep­re­sent South Africa at the Op­ti­mist World Cham­pi­onships.

The Op­ti­mist is the most pop­u­lar dinghy in the world and the craft that most Olympic sailors be­gan their ca­reers sail­ing. About 200 000 are es­ti­mated to have been built since 1947, when it was de­signed to in­tro­duce chil­dren to sail­ing.

Alex and his team­mates train three times a week, but the weather on Thurs­day was not suit­able for nor­mal train­ing. How­ever, Alex could not turn away from the chance to sail in a storm and headed to the Im­pe­rial Yacht Club in Zand­vlei, Muizen­berg where he took his boat out for a one­hour sail­ing ses­sion.

It turned out to be a chal­leng­ing sail. The mea­sured wind speed peaked at 45 knots and in some of the squalls it was not pos­si­ble to see the other side of the lake through the heavy rain. But he made it safely back to dry land and home in time for tea.

PIC­TURES: CALVIN GIBBS

Alex Falcon sails for Zeeko­evlei Yacht Club and is part of a team of five Op­ti­mist Dinghy sailors who have been se­lected to go to Thai­land next month and rep­re­sent South Africa at the Op­ti­mist World Cham­pi­onships.

With school can­celled for the Wed­nes­day due to a fore­cast 50-knot wind, Alex Falcon, 13, de­cided to go sail­ing.

PIC­TURE: YOUTUBE

Ru­pert Makka, a 26-year-old rap­per, is hop­ing to dis­prove an age-old stereo­type – that teach­ers are un­cool.

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