TED-Ed: Flipping the Learning

Many of us have viewed and shared links to TED Talks videos, where speakers teach us about a topic they are passionate or knowledgeable about. TED’s newest initiative, TED-Ed, is a service that was created “with the intention of supporting teachers and sparking the curiosity of learners around the world.” These high quality videos, created through a collaboration between educators and animators, would make a nice addition to a “flipped classroom.”

In the flipped classroom model, teachers assign students to access content that is normally delivered during class time but now it becomes the homework. Class time can then be used for discussion, reflection or collaboration about that content.  Because video is a dynamic medium for delivering content, some teachers create their own video while others use resources already created and shared online.

One concern many educators have about the flipped model is regarding how we might be able to tell that students have viewed and understood the content. For each TED-Ed video, you’ll find a “Flip This Lesson” button. After creating a free account, you’ll be able to use this to customize the lesson then assign the content to your students via email or sharing the lesson’s unique URL.

There are three ways to customize the lesson for your students:

  1. Think – create multiple choice or open-ended questions for students to answer after or while viewing the video. For the multiple choice questions, you have the option of providing a time code for the point in the video where question related information occurs.  This will help a student who answers a question incorrectly by providing the opportunity to review the video.
  2. Dig Deeper –type additional information or instructions, or provide links to more information on the topic.
  3. …And Finally – this is a place where you can prompt students to think further about the topic or perhaps, to create something to demonstrate their learning.

Once you’ve customized the lesson, click on Save and you’ll be given the URL that you can share via social networks, email or link.

Gathering Data about Student Use
Students can access your lessons with or without a TED-Ed account.  Here are a couple of things to keep in mind if you want to capture data from their interaction with the content.

  1. If students create accounts, you’ll be able to access the Lesson Stats for any video, see the students’ names as well as view the accuracy of their answers and their response for each question in the Think Deeper section. Be sure students understand that they should save their answers for any open ended question and check their answers for any multiple choice questions.
  2. Without an account, students will still use the URL you give them for the lesson. They can ignore the prompt to create an account and continue answering each question in the Think Deeper section, again making sure that they save and check all of their answers. In this case, you can go to the Lesson Stats and click on the link labeled “Download Student Responses (CSV).” This will open an Excel spreadsheet showing you the results for each individual question but each response is shown as “guest.” This gives you data about the overall performance of the class so you can determine the progress or need for additional support.

In a future post we’ll take a look at how you can create a total lesson using a YouTube video of your choice.

How would you use TED-Ed to support learning and instruction in your classroom?

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