We live in a world where every day people can become internet celebrities on apps like Instagram and Tik Tok and kids can’t get enough of their viral videos. A Spanish teacher at Bellaire High School just outside of Houston, Texas, decided to use that to his advantage – and his efforts have led him to becoming one of those viral video celebrities himself.
Every teacher out there, especially those that have been on the job for awhile now, can tell you that finding creative ways to inspire teenagers in the classroom is not an easy task. Teenagers have always been, by nature, tough to engage, but these days, there is even more competition for their attention thanks to social media.
Dr. Trevor Boffone has been teaching for more than 12 years, so he has plenty of experience in the classroom. But at the beginning of the 2018-19 school year, Boffone was looking for better ways to engage with his students.
Knowing that his kids loved to dance, loved to make videos, and loved social media, he decided that instead of trying to find ways for them to come to him, he would go to them. A favorite among his kids was Dubsmash, an app that allows users to lip sync over audio clips from sections of songs, movies or television. So Boffone asked his kids to teach him the app and, what turned out to be, some viral dance moves, as well.
After learning and videoing a few dances with his students (some choreographed by the students themselves), he began posting the videos on social media. In just six weeks, he had gone viral and gained more than 50,000 followers. Today, his videos have millions of views across the country and he has more than 340,000 followers on Instagram. He’s even joked that he feels like the “Beyonce of Bellaire High School,”
Becoming an internet sensation has led to an appearance on Good Morning America, along with countless media interviews with both Boffone and his Bellaire students. And while it seems to have all started with his viral dance moves in the classroom, it really began with his desire to reach the kids he works with every day.
Take a minute to watch Dr. Boffone’s inspirational – and highly entertaining – dance moves and who knows, teachers? You might just gain a little inspiration for your own classrooms!
We would also like to take a quick moment to acknowledge something a little more somber. Last month Bellaire High School suffered the unspeakable – the fatal shooting of a student. We would encourage you to take a moment to read Dr. Baffone’s response to the incident in the Houston Press. As parents, we can be grateful that there are teachers out there who care about their students and take the time to establish a real connection, not just during times of tragedy, but throughout their careers. We know that the entire Bellaire community is grateful to Dr. Baffone for the love and support he provides every day and we extend our thoughts and prayers to the Bellaire High School students, staff, and their families.
For more inspirational videos like this one, be sure to catch out entire Share Saturdays series – only on Richmond Mom!