TED Talks have been some of my favorite supplements for lessons the past couple of years. You can even watch them on your television at home with a Roku or other streaming device. They’re succinct, informative, entertaining, and always thought-provoking.
Now the folks at TED are offering a new tool that I think teachers will find really useful: TED-Ed beta. They are developing a library of lessons written by teachers and illustrated by talented animators. You can write your own lesson and submit it to them. If it’s accepted, they will animate it for you.
What’s really useful, though, is the editing features they have incorporated into the site. Every video comes with a quick quiz for students, questions that push them to think about the topic even more, and suggestions for further exploration. Teachers can edit the existing questions, or write their own. Once a teacher customizes a lesson (they call it “flipping a lesson”), a unique URL is created for him or her to share via email with students. Stats are available so the teacher can see who has answered the questions, and how well each student did.
I just finished talking about exponential growth with my calculus students, so I used this lesson that is in the Math library:
TED-Ed is the latest web-based tool that continues the trend of making ever-easier applications available to educators. Watch a short introduction to it here: