Have you heard of the Khan Academy? If not, let me fill you in, because they’re doing some great things. They’re an educational company based out in California. Their approach to learning is slightly different to most schools though. In most schools you go to class, receive your lecture from the teacher, and then do homework in the evenings or weekend. Khan Academy flip that round. With them you watch the lecture online at home in the evenings. Class time is then devoted to discussion of what you saw the previous evening or exercises on the subject you will have watched.
It gets more interesting though. For you see whilst the students are completing their exercises, the teacher can see exactly what they’re doing. So if a child is struggling, the teacher doesn’t have to wait to be asked to help, they can be proactive with their assistance. So whilst the other students continue to work at their own pace, the teacher can give assistance to the students that are struggling, and know the exact areas they’re weak in.
The Academy has seen support come in from the likes of Bill Gates, and more recently Google. The search giants announced today that they’re teaming up with the Khan Academy in a bid to find the next best way to show educational content via YouTube. It really is a boom time for the provision of free online learning, with the likes of edX, P2PU, Skillshare, Codecademy and Coursera growing rapidly.
They’ve announced the move on their blog as a competition to find ‘the Next EDU Gurus’. The 10 winners of the competition will get backing and support from both Google and Khan Academy. They’ll get training, promotion and $1,000 to spend on equipment.
Here’s what Google had to say on the matter.
Do you set historical events to music? Doodle your geometry? Sing your Shakespeare? We’re looking for content creators who create all kinds of curriculum-related videos, from grammar to geography, history to histograms. You can submit any style of video as long as it’s educational and family-friendly–just bear in mind that we’re looking for content creators who can take people on a journey through a topic, so if you could imagine making ten, twenty, or fifty more videos on the topic in the future, all the better!
If you’re interested in applying and live in the US, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia or New Zealand, you’ll need to create your video and add it to the YouTube Education category by October 1st. For more details, check out the full announcement here.