Top 6 Schoolhouse Rock! Shorts

We put our heads together and came up with our 6 favorite Schoolhouse Rock! shorts. Enjoy!

6. "The Preamble"
Good ol' Schoolhouse Rock! As a kid, I watched them all. As I mindlessly sat in front on the TV, I had no idea I was learning. None.

Fast forward about 20 years from my pig-tailed days of mindlessly singing the words to "The Preamble"... to my own classroom. I was teaching secondary U.S. History, and found the bland words of The Preamble made my students' minds go numb. I decided to take a risk. I introduced 20-year-old music and 20-year-old programming to over sixty 16-18 year-olds. I was desperate. They were desperate.

So I wrote my lesson plan and reserved a TV at the school office. The rest, shall we say... is history. Be it 1976 or 1996, "The Preamble" by Schoolhouse Rock! rocked. I wish I'd had a video camera back then... to see my classroom of teens swaying back and forth... singing "The Preamble." I was amazed. They ALL got sucked in. That song, it is drug-like. Just as I sat in front of my TV as a child -- I had no idea I was learning, and as those kids sat in my classroom back in 1996, neither did they. Awesome. --Jennyonthespot

5. "Three Is A Magic Number"
1973 was a year on fire for me.

I was doing half days at nursery school and bossing all the kids around because my mom owned the place AND my TV viewing was still at a record high. Mr. Rogers, The Electric Company, Sesame Street, and, of course, the Schoolhouse Rock! series.

"Three Is A Magic Number" was one of my favorites for a really strange reason: I used to love the Mom and Dad with their ONE baby that made three. In my warped, spoiled, and selfish mind, three was the perfect number for a family when the only child was a horrible brat who wanted it all. Eventually this kid would grow up to become a shameless attention whore who had to have everything HER way, but that’s another story entirely.

I spent my youth laboring under the delusion that Paul Simon sung this ditty and when I got older was able to appreciate the fact that things that come in threes are pretty significant. The ancient mystic trinity. The past, present, and future. Heart, brain, and body. The list goes on and on. --Dufmanno

4. "I'm Just A Bill"
Grammar and math are difficult. But try to explain politics to kids. Most adults can't even figure it out. But that's the genius of "I'm Just A Bill." In just over three minutes, the whole process of how a bill becomes a law is explained without cynicism and with one incredibly catchy song. As a kid, I didn't even realize the lesson I had learned until a middle school civics class where I said, "Oh yeah! I KNOW this already!!" That is the power of Schoolhouse Rock!. Because you are probably humming "I'm Just a Bill" to yourself right now, it earns the #4 spot on our list. --Daddy Geek Boy

3. "Lolly, Lolly, Lolly, Get Your Adverbs Here"
Ah, the memories! It was sometime in the early '90s. I was taking my 4th or 5th Spanish class (I lost track after that first F). This one was a college level course, and hopefully the last course. Despite being half-Hispanic and having several immediate family members who are fluently bilingual, I just don't seem to have an affinity for the language in an academic setting. Or a real-life setting. However, I was always damn good at grammar, regardless of the language, and Schoolhouse Rock! always held a fond place in my heart because of that. I remember clearly the day I was hit with a quiz on adverbial clauses. Spanish adverbial clauses! (Which, if you were wondering, means they can dance a smart flamenco.) We had to underline the part of the sentence that was the clause. In Spanish. I had a brief moment of panic, considering I kept mixing up all those 'Q' words (que, quien, what?), and then I remembered, "How, where, or when... condition or reason... these questions are answered... when you use an ADVERB!" Yes, "Lolly, Lolly, Lolly" saved my ass that day. And it probably saved a few other butts as well, since I started humming it in the middle of the test. You're welcome. --The Weirdgirl

2. "Interjections!"
While I'd love to tell you this song had a major influence on my life because I learned something from it, that would be an out-and-out lie. The reason this song and, more importantly, the video has stuck with me through the years is because this was my first experience with televised nudity. I believe "Interjections!" was the catalyst for my lifelong love of porn.

Ok. I'm just kidding. The reason I loved this song so much is because the girl said, "Darn!" at the end which, to my five-year-old ears, sounded a lot like a word I wasn't allowed to say, but was still close enough to make it cool.

Ok. Kidding again. The song kicked ass, you couldn't help but sing along to it, and it encouraged yelling. But between the "Drat!" and the nudity, you half expected to see a kid smoking in the short.

It was the seventies, after all. --Chag

1. "Conjunction Junction"
I honestly don't remember the first time I saw "Conjunction Junction" but the song's been with me so long that it feels like I was born knowing the song. I'm not really sure why, but in my mind, "Conjunction Junction" is the quintessential Schoolhouse Rock! song. The catchy jazzy riff gets stuck in your head and it's fun to sing - and everyone on earth seems to know it.

I did a play several years ago with an off-beat theatre company - the show was Speed Racer and the Superfriends. One of my projects for the show was to set up a playlist of music for the preshow (the idle time when the audience is filing in, getting seated, sitting around and waiting for the show to start). We wanted to make the preshow music Saturday morning cartoon themes to get people in the mood for the main event. We were tossing around some ideas of cartoon theme songs when someone mentioned that we should break up the cartoon songs with Schoolhouse Rock! songs like they used to do on TV in the '80s. And as soon as Schoolhouse Rock! was mentioned, we all broke out into "Conjunction Junction, what's your function? Hooking up words and phrases and clauses!" It was kind of amazing since the group ranged in age from 18-40+. Musical grammar lessons, bringing people together since 1973! --Archphoenix

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We showed you ours, now show us yours! What are your favorite Schoolhouse Rock! shorts? Let us know in the comments!

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