Tuesday was Teacher Appreciation Day in the United States — and it wasn’t lost on the set of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. In the latest installment of The Roots’ ongoing series “Freestylin’ With The Roots,” they celebrated New York City teachers by freestyling for them in Fallon’s audience in the style of Jackson 5, ABBA, Migos, Portugal. The Man and more.
The first homage was to a Bay Ridge STEM teacher who received an offbeat gift of a Russian nesting doll from a student, sending the Roots into a spoof of “ABC.” It went on from the Jackson 5 bit — first with a serenade to an ESL teacher based on Migos’ “Stir Fry,” then a reworking of ABBA’s “Dancing Queen” for a Manhattan teacher who loves dancing to Lady Gaga, and a recasting of Portugal. The Man’s “Feel It Still” as a fire drill announcement.
From there, everything from Cardi B‘s “Bodak Yellow” to Shawn Mendes‘ “There’s Nothing Holding Me Back” was fair game for Teacher Appreciation Day — and the ever-nimble Roots mostly nailed the off-the-cuff requests. You can watch this offbeat ode to New York’s scholastic finest below.