Hamilton: The Musical Based on the Man

The Teacher Training program I’m involved with usually goes abroad during the school vacation periods for additional training and cultural experiences in a Western country (USA, Canada, England, Australia, etc). However, since 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, travel abroad has been canceled.

Therefore, I was asked to present on American history or culture in order to provide a small taste of the experience they will miss by not going abroad this session. So, I selected Hamilton: The Musical because it tells the story of the American Revolution up to the founding of the US government through the eyes of one of its key members, the first Secretary of the Treasury, and the man on the $10 bill: Alexander Hamilton.

Additionally, Disney+ released the full Broadway musical as a movie in July 2020 during the pandemic, just before the first time I gave this presentation. The timing was perfect.


Why did I choose to introduce you to this particular musical?

  1. I was asked to present on American History & Culture
  2. This story tells of the foundation of the United States of America and its government – from the American Revolution against Britain to the establishment of the US government and the third US President (Jefferson)

Alexander Hamilton was a US Founding Father

  • 1 of 7 key figures (John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton,
    John Jay, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, & George Washington)
  • He wrote majority of The Federalist Papers (51 of 85), that argued for ratification of the Constitution
  • Hamilton is one of very few key figures to appear on US currency. His face is on the $10 bill
  1. It is one of the most popular & decorated (award-winning) musicals of all time (with 16 Tony nominations, 11 wins, and a Pulitzer Prize for Drama)
  2. It is musically, lyrically, a work of art – choreographed beautifully, with so many small details, hidden meanings, and foreshadowing, it would be a shame NOT to learn about it
  3. It was released as a full-length movie on Disney+ in July 2020, just in time for the first time I gave this presentation during the Covid-19 pandemic

Reviews of the Musical

“2015’s best rap album isn’t by Drake, Kendrick Lamar or Dr. Dre — it’s the cast recording of Hamilton, a vital companion to the most creative, most talked-about musical to hit Broadway this millennium.”

Billboard Review

“Yes, it really is that good.”

New York Times Review

Let’s start with getting to know the three most important people who made this musical / movie possible.

Rob Chernow

Rob Chernow is a Historian and Biographer whose 818-page biography about Alexander Hamilton served as the main inspiration for the musical. Chernow reviewed over 22,000 archival documents and research papers about Hamilton, including many of Hamilton’s own writings in order to write the book. After publication, it stayed on the New York Times bestseller list for 3-months, and Chernow also served as historical consultant on the musical.

Other notable works:

  • The House of Morgan (J.P. Morgan) (812 p.)
  • Titan (John D. Rockefeller, Sr.) (774p.)
  • Alexander Hamilton (818p.)
  • Washington: A Life (904p. + Pulitzer Prize for Biography)
  • Grant (Ulysses S. Grant) (1,104p.)

“If Washington is the father of the country and Madison the father of the Constitution, then Alexander Hamilton was surely the father of the American government.

Rob Chernow on Hamilton

Lin Manuel-Miranda

Lin-Manuel Miranda is an actor, songwriter, and producer who wrote all the song lyrics for Hamilton: The Musical which first hit Broadway in 2015. Hamilton won 11 Tony awards (16 nominations), and a Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The Musical has been so famous and popular that it had 7 US productions, and 2 international productions (including Hamburg and Sydney), as well as a full-length movie released on Disney+ in July 2020.

Other Notable Works:

  • In The Heights (Broadway, 2008) – 13 Tony nominations (4 wins) + 1 Grammy
  • Bring It On: The Musical (Broadway, 2012)
  • Hamilton: The Musical (Broadway, 2015)
  • Moana (Disney, 2016) – He wrote the songs
  • Mary Poppins Returns (Disney, 2018) – He was the chimney sweep

“America then, as told by America now.”

Lin-Manuel Miranda on casting non-white actors for the Founding Fathers

(In the 2020 census, there were nearly 40% “non-white” respondents.)

Alexander Hamilton

Alexander Hamilton was one of the seven most important Founding Fathers of the US (including John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, & George Washington).

Notable works:

  1. Influential interpreter & promoter of the U.S. Constitution
  2. Main writer of The Federalist Papers (51 of 85) that argued for ratification of the U.S. Constitution
  3. Founder of the nation’s financial system, the Federalist Party (which dissolved after his death), the United States Coast Guard, and the New York Post newspaper
  4. First secretary of the treasury & the main author of George Washington’s economic policies
  5. Led the federal government’s funding of the states’ debts
  6. Established the nation’s first two de facto central banks, the Bank of North America and the First Bank of the United States
  7. Established a system of tariffs & friendly trade relations with Britain

“I have resolved…to reserve and throw away my first fire, and I have thoughts even of reserving my second fire – and thus giving a double opportunity to Col Burr to pause and to reflect.”

Alexander Hamilton reflecting on & writing about his upcoming pistol duel with Aaron Burr

Hamilton: The Musical

Hamilton: The Musical is broken into two Acts with an Intermission between them. Each Act contains 23 songs on the album, although there is a 24th song in Act one that wasn’t released on the album. Additionally, each Act runs approximately one hour and eleven minutes:

  • Act 1: 24 songs, 1:11:11+
  • Act 2: 23 songs, 1:11:27

The following video shows the “Best 20 Hamilton Songs” as ranked by WatchMojo. For the most part, I agree with this list, but there are a few others that I starred in the lists below that I also think are quite good.

Overall, the entire musical is a lyrical phenomenon, so it’s hard to judge between them. But this is a pretty good list to get started with.

I’ve also provided links to the Wikipedia page for each song (where one exists), as well as the full lyrics, and the Namu Wiki page for my Korean students to have a better time understanding.

Act 1

In which Hamilton joins the Revolutionary Army in the battle for independence from England.

Act 1 can be broken into two parts of relatively equal length:

  1. The setup, situation, & characters
  2. War with Britain

The full synopsis of Act 1 can be read on Wikipedia here.

20Alexander Hamilton3:56Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
19Aaron Burr, Sir2:36Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
2My Shot5:33Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
**The Story of Tonight1:31Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
5The Schuyler Sisters3:06Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
Farmer Refuted1:52Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
16You’ll Be Back3:28Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
Right Hand Man5:21Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
A Winter’s Ball1:09Lyrics | 나무위키
9Helpless4:09Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
3Satisfied5:29Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
The Story of Tonight [Reprise]1:55Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
4Wait For It3:13Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
Stay Alive2:39Lyrics | 나무위키
*Ten Duel Commandments1:46Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
*Meet Me Inside1:23Lyrics | 나무위키
That Would Be Enough2:58Lyrics | 나무위키
6Guns and Ships2:07Lyrics | 나무위키
*History Has its Eyes on You1:37Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
1Yorktown4:02Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
What Comes Next?1:39Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
17Dear Theodosia3:04Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
Tomorrow There’ll Be More of Us1:08?Wiki
11Non-Stop6:25Lyrics | 나무위키


Act 2

In which Hamilton’s efforts in the birth of the fledgling nation takes an increasing toll.

Act 2 can also be broken into two parts of relatively equal length:

  1. Establishing a new government
  2. Affair, repercussions, political enemies, tragic end

The full synopsis of Act 2 can be read on Wikipedia here.

14What’d I Miss?3:56Lyrics | 나무위키
**Cabinet Battle #13:35Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
Take a Break4:46Lyrics | 나무위키
13Say No to This4:02Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
7The Room Where it Happens5:18Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
Schuyler Defeated1:03Lyrics | 나무위키
Cabinet Battle #22:22Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
***Washington on Your Side3:01Lyrics | 나무위키
12One Last Time4:56Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
*I Know Him1:37Lyrics | 나무위키
The Adams Administration0:54Lyrics | 나무위키
We Know2:22Lyrics | 나무위키
*Hurricane2:23Lyrics | 나무위키
The Reynolds Pamphlet2:08Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
8Burn3:45Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
*Blow Us All Away2:53Lyrics | 나무위키
***Stay Alive [Reprise]1:51Lyrics | 나무위키
18It’s Quiet Uptown4:30Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
15The Election of 18003:57Lyrics | 나무위키
Your Obedient Servant2:30Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
Best of Wives and Best of Women0:47Lyrics | 나무위키
***The World Was Wide Enough5:02Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키
10Who Lives, Who Dies,
Who Tells Your Story
3:37Lyrics | Wiki | 나무위키

The Duel

The duel with Aaron Burr is the most (in)famous part of Hamilton’s life, and before the Musical, probably one of the only things (besides his face on the $10 bill) that many children in the US would remember about his life.

And given the significance of this event, I thought it would be good to include the song from the Musical that details it.

In the song:

“Burr and Hamilton travel to New Jersey for the duel. Burr reflects on the moments leading up to the duel, stating that one of them will have to die. Burr and Hamilton walk the requisite ten paces, with Burr firing first, and time freezes as Hamilton reflects on his legacy, before throwing away his shot. Burr shoots him between the ribs and Hamilton eventually dies, mourned upon by Eliza, Angelica, and the rest of the cast. Burr laments that though he survived, he is cursed to be remembered as the villain who killed Hamilton.” (Wikipedia)

So, Hamilton is dead, but Burr’s life is destroyed. Though he was the third Vice President of the US, along side Thomas Jefferson as President, he would never again hold any public office.


As a final note, and to further prove the popularity and cultural relevance of Hamilton: The Musical, here is a “Weird Al” polka of Hamilton. In the US, you know you’ve “made it” to the big time whenever Weird Al does a parody or a polka of one (or more) of your songs.

Teacher Training Tech Tips

This presentation was for the Teacher Training program at Jeonju University. With this presentation, I coupled together (and updated) a few of my most well-used presentations for the program, including a PPT on Internet Security, the previous Teacher Tech Tips, and an overview of some of the technology options we had for things to study in the course.

Teacher Tech Tips Update

This talk is an updated version of a similar talk I gave in 2017. It combines that talk with another presentation I’ve given to my high school classes on Internet Security and Safety, as well as introduces possible app options to learn during this Teacher Training course.

There are THREE main topics to discuss in this presentation:

  1. Computer Security
  2. Professional Productivity
  3. Technology Learning options

Part ONE: Computer Security

The first section of this presentation will focus on THREE aspects of Security both on and offline:

  1. Phishing
  2. Hacking
  3. Social Engineering


What is Phishing?

Phishing is a type of social engineering where an attacker sends a fraudulent (“spoofed”) message designed to trick a human victim into revealing sensitive information to the attacker or to deploy malicious software on the victim’s infrastructure like ransomware.
– Wikipedia

In other words: Phishing is a false email or message you receive that purposefully attempts to get you to compromise your security in some way.

Questions to Consider:

  • Do you know someone who has been scammed? What happened?
  • What is the purpose of a scam? What are some tricks people use?
  • What kinds of personal information might someone try to get? How do they get it?

Commonalities in Phishing Messages:

  • They want you to verify your account information (online)
  • Because they alert you that “your account is in trouble!”
  • And there’s a sense of urgency
  • You can find English spelling or grammar errors (very common)
  • There’s often a link provided (which can be disguised)
  • Or some kind of attachment (also disguised, potentially hiding a virus)
  • Or the message sounds too good to be true (“You’ve won $1 million!”)
  • And often there is a generic greeting (“Dear Sir / Madam”)

The PPT gives THREE examples of phishing emails. Can you notice what is “off” about each one? What clues give away their phishing intention?


What is Hacking?

Hacking refers to activities that seek to compromise (by breaching defenses, or exploiting weaknesses in) digital devices, such as computers, smartphones, tablets, and even entire networks.
– MalwareBytes

Can you read the following message? It’s written in Leet:

K33P C4LM 4ND 5P34K L337

In English, it reads: “Keep Calm and Speak Leet.”

Leet is basically a kind of modified spelling of English words that replaces some characters with numbers or symbols that look similar to the English letters they are replacing.

It’s also a GREAT way to stay safe on the Internet. By using a password or passphrase that includes symbols or numbers in place of similar-looking letters, you can create a password that is relatively easy to remember but hard to hack.

Password Tips

  • NO
    • Dictionary words or very common words (nor combinations of 2 or 3)
    • Not short – shorter = weaker and easier to hack
    • Not easy to guess information like your birthday, or your mother’s name, or any information that can be easily found on your Facebook profile
  • YES
    • $ymbol$, L337$p3@k (Leetspeak), etc
    • Longer = stronger
    • Sometimes patterns are helpful – for example, on social media, create a passphrase that reminds you of your purpose on each platform:
      • onFacebookIpostpics4family
    • A passphrase is much stronger than a password
      • For example: mymothertoldmetoalwaysbecareful even though it doesn’t use any special characters, numbers, nor Capitals, is MUCH stronger than 5@f3tY!1st (safety!1st) and much easier to remember

Stay Safe

Passphrases beat Passwords

The image below is a cartoon from XKCD.com that illustrates why passphrases almost always beat passwords:

Passphrases change lives

Want to read a great story about how a password changed someone’s life?

Single Sign-on vs. Traditional Login

Now, while we’re on the subject of passwords, let’s also talk about the difference between Single Sign-on methods (logging in with Facebook or Google, etc) and the traditional email/password login method.

These ARE NOT the same, so please don’t be confused.

In a basic sense:

  • Single Sign-on
    • Facebook or Google, etc manages your private data, user profile information, and so on
    • When you click the SSO button, you sign in to THAT site
    • Then THAT site provides THIS site with a special TOKEN proving you are you
    • Then you get access to THIS site
  • Traditional Login
    • THIS site records your email and password and stores it in its own database
    • THIS site manages your user profile information
    • When you click the login button, THIS site checks your email / password combination against its database to verify your identity
    • If your email / password combination is correct, you get access to THIS site

In sum:

  • Single Sign-on is managed by Facebook, Google etc, and retains NO email / password information for you in THIS site – you are logged in with a TOKEN
  • Traditional Login is managed entirely by THIS site, and THIS site retains your email / password data, which is used to log you in. There is NO connection to Facebook, Google, etc using the Traditional Login – it only remembers your email (but is NOT connected to it)
Pros & Cons

Personally, I prefer SSO logins to Traditional logins for a number of reasons:

  1. It’s easy and streamlined
  2. I don’t have to create ANOTHER account and remember ANOTHER password
  3. It already links to my verified profiles on social media
  4. With updated accurate info and profile pictures
  5. I can link other accounts to the service or site as well
  6. There are less failed logins
  7. Less abandonment of the site
  8. And greater user adoption

There are a few disadvantages we can talk about as well though:

  1. Security issues
    • If the major website is compromised (hacked), then your information that’s stored on it will also be compromised (but Facebook / Google are huge and have enormous resources – more than THIS site – to combat that)
    • Also, it can promote bad password practices like reusing the same password everywhere for convenience
  2. Privacy
    1. Additionally, by logging in to Facebook / Google on THIS site, you will be allowing these services to track your behavior and display targeted ads here
    2. Also, your social data is essentially completely “open” and accessible to THIS site once you login

But personally, I still find SSO to be far more convenient, and I can deal with the disadvantages it provides.

But remember:

  • If you JOIN the site with SSO
  • You ALWAYS have to login with SSO
  • You can’t use your email / password in the login fields

Social Engineering

What is Social Engineering?

In the context of information security, social engineering is the psychological manipulation of people into performing actions or divulging confidential information.
– Wikipedia

One of the best movies that highlights social engineering is Catch Me If You Can (Amazon affiliate) with Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks:

The most basic principle to always keep in mind when it comes to Internet, computer, or even building security is:

YOU are always the weakest link

Let’s take a look at some of the most common social engineering methods and tactics below. Click the links for more information:

Stay Safe

Protect yourself from social engineering by keeping the following principles in mind:

  1. Be skeptical (trust no one)
  2. Don’t open suspicious (unexpected) emails (or messages)
  3. Mark suspicious messages as “Spam” or “Junk” (this helps everyone)
  4. Don’t click links in messages (hover over them to double-check the destination, or copy-paste the link in your browser window as links can be disguised)
  5. Check URLs (look for HTTPS (“s” for “secure”) and make sure the URL is real)
  6. Don’t enter your personal information, particularly NOT passwords or credit card information into websites you’ve linked to from outside sources
  7. When in doubt, call customer service to verify the email or message
  8. Create strong passwords (passphrases)
  9. Always remember to install security patches and updates (which fix vulnerabilities that have been exploited)

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Part TWO: Professional Productivity

This portion of the presentation was originally given as part of a training seminar at Global Prodigy Academy international high school in Jeonju. Please view the following link for that presentation in its entirety:

The majority of that presentation remains the same in this updated version with the exception of Multiple User Profiles, in both Chrome and Windows, which we’ll look at in more depth after the Useful Computer Tricks section.

Useful Computer Tricks

The following are some of THE very best computer tricks for teachers I’ve picked up over the years (and use on a nearly daily basis):

  1. Browser Tricks
    1. CTRL + SHIFT + N = Chrome’s Incognito mode (doesn’t save passwords, browsing history, etc)
    2. CTRL + SHIFT + T = Re-open the most recently closed tab
    3. In Gmail, with keyboard shortcuts enabled: C = compose new message
    4. Also in Gmail, type SHIFT + ? to view a pop-up of ALL of Gmail’s keyboard shortcuts
    5. And in Google Docs, a quick way to Strikethrough anything you don’t want is to highlight it and press ALT + SHIFT + 5
    6. We’ll talk about Multiple Chrome users in the next section
  2. Windows Shortcuts
    1. CTRL + ALT + DELETE = Slow, additional step to Task Manager
    2. CTRL + SHIFT + ESC = FAST, direct Task Manager access
    3. Win + ← or Win + → = Move current window to half screen
    4. Win + L = Instant logout
    5. Win + P = Change Presentation (projector) mode
    6. PrtSc = screenshot & screen drawing (with the Lightshot app installed)
  3. Text Editing
    1. CTRL + V = pastes text into a Document
    2. But CTRL + SHIFT + V removes styling from the text you copy-paste
    3. CTRL + K = create hyperlink from selected text
    4. CTRL + Z = undo
    5. But CTRL + SHIFT + Z = redo

Multiple Users

For me, discovering that it was possible to create multiple Users in Chrome and Windows has been a real game changer.

I used to need to login to multiple different email accounts constantly throughout the day in order to get some work done. And after a time, some accounts would be automatically logged out. And I’d often loose track of what I was working on, or which tabs I needed open for different tasks.

But with multiple Chrome users, I’m able to separate the tabs and emails I’m using for different accounts quite easily, and keep them separate. I open a different User account whenever I need to switch tasks.

The same is true for multiple Windows users. By creating multiple users in Windows, I’m able to keep my files and programs separate from everyone else in my family who also uses the same computer.

In this way, whether in Chrome or Windows, each user profile, and all their content and settings, can be customized to the particular user who needs it.

Acceptable Use Policies

What is an Acceptable Use Policy?

An acceptable use policy (AUP) is a document stipulating constraints and practices that a user must agree to for access to a corporate network or the Internet.  Many businesses and educational facilities require that employees or students sign an acceptable use policy before being granted a network ID.
– WhatIs.com

This is something that came up a few times at the high school I was working at. In principle, the high school owns the email accounts and all the computers that students and faculty use while at school. So, any inappropriate use can be disciplined by the school.

Examples of inappropriate use:

  • Student: bullying classmates via the school email, looking at inappropriate things on the school computers, harassing or attempting to blackmail teachers with the school email
  • Teacher: job hunting with the school email, looking at (or showing) inappropriate things on the school computers, etc

General Guidelines:

I think it is always a good idea to remember WHICH email account you are using when you send messages, and WHO OWNS the email or the devices you are using. Here are some general AUP guidelines to help you stay safe:

  1. Keep things professional (at all times)
  2. Your school / company owns your school email, office device, etc
  3. Scheduling / socializing with students outside school hours (including instant messaging) needs to be handled with caution, and is not recommended
  4. Keeping door codes & computer passwords secure is important (beware of writing down passwords near your computer, or students looking over your shoulder as you type the password or enter the door code)
  5. A zero-tolerance policy for bullying and harassment might be advisable

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Part THREE: Technology Learning options

In this Teacher Training course – which runs for 18 weeks – we will study many of the following apps. I’m presenting this list to you here for future reference and also to see which you may have heard about and which you may be interested in learning more about.

Anything with a red asterisk * is what we will definitely study. After Row One (Google tools), apps are presented in alphabetical order.

  • Row ONE
    • * Google Classroom (Publish class content, collect & grade assignments)
    • * Google Docs (Collaborate on assignments, create books / journals)
    • * Google Sheets (Create schedules, calendars, lists, graphs, charts, grade books, etc)
    • * Google Slides (Create PPTs, PDF books, journals, posters, edit images)
    • * Google Drawings (Create images, graphics, charts, logos)
    • * Google Forms (Create surveys, quizzes, analyze student data)
    • * Google Sites (Publish digital portfolios, keep students & parents up to date)
    • * YouTube (Create, edit, & subtitle videos – good for learning reflection)
  • Row TWO
    • * Audacity (Create audio files, listening tests, etc for FREE)
    • Blogger (Let students show what they know, reflect, journal project progress, etc)
    • Book Creator (Web & iOS, create books, portfolios, audio files, etc)
    • Book Widgets (Create interactive exercises & auto graded tests)
    • * Canva (Create online graphics, books, presentations – a Korean-version is known as Miricanvas, but Canva includes design tutorials)
    • Code.org (Create programs, games, and animations with Blockly, an easy-to-learn coding tool)
    • Explain Everything (Whiteboard app that lets you draw, create content, record and narrate everything on your screen)
    • Flipgrid (A video-response platform where students record responses to published videos of their classmates)
  • Row THREE
    • Formative (Formative assessment tool that lets students respond by writing on their screens)
    • * Kahoot (Create competitive quizzes that can be done in class)
    • Metaverse (Augmented Reality magic for teachers and students)
    • * OBS (Open Broadcaster Studio allows you to record whole classes on your computer, including using a webcam and PPT, for FREE)
    • Padlet (Collaborate and share work or assignments with anyone in the class)
    • * Plickers (No-device-required interactive quizzes)
    • * Quizizz (Interactive quizzes like Kahoot with more quiz options)
    • Quizlet (A flashcard and spaced repetition quiz app)
  • Row FOUR
    • ReCap App (Students verbalize their thoughts and reflect on their learning with video and audio creation tools)
    • Screencastify (Record what happens on your screen with this Chrome extension)
    • Seesaw (A comprehensive digital portfolio app and website)
    • Socrative (A popular formative assessment tool that helps teachers gather student info from closed- and open-ended questions)
    • Soundtrap (A collaborative digital audio workstation for students to make audio files)
    • WeVideo (A web-based video creation platform)
    • Talk and Comment (Another Chrome extension that lets students leave voice notes in any web page)
    • * Zoom (The definitive video-conferencing app)


I hope this presentation was helpful for introducing this class. I look forward to learning a lot together with you this semester!

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