Let’s consider the things that TED Ed asks the learner to do: watch a video, take a multiple-choice quiz, write brief constructed responses, and read through a bibliography. If I took the name TED out of this scenario, I would suggest that many educators would say that this format is exactly the type of traditional assessment that project-based, inquiry-driven, personalized learning is at odds with.
It is perfectly fine to watch a video. It is perfectly fine to view a lecture. It is perfectly fine to quiz yourself on what you remember from the video or the lecture. It is perfectly fine to write a brief response about a big question. But let’s not call that a lesson. That’s just a starting point.
Lessons come from doing.
My summer homework this year contains a unit involving Kahn Academy. I’ve listened to the critiques of both my colleagues and Dan Meyer on internet tools and I think the answer is pretty simple.
As a teacher I collect as many tools as I can to put in my toolbox. Some tools are used 80% of the time. Some tools are used 20% of the time.
But the most important tool is the tool I need right now. In this instance, it’s a old-school-pedagogy with a Web 2.0 twist. I don’t think all of my children will succeed or use it to its highest potential. Its just a great way of encouraging my kids to explore math in a “non-traditional” way. Even though it’s traditional.
Make it safe & keep the rubber side down.