Education ∪ Math ∪ Technology

Differentiating in Math Class Using Online Videos

I told my colleagues about the Khan Academy last week. They thought the idea of being able to access all these resources was incredibly cool.

One of them today built his entire lesson around the Khan Academy videos. You see he has a class with a very wide range of abilities. Some of the students know nothing about exponents, some of them know a tonne already. So he found all of the Khan Academy videos that related to the rules of exponents, organized them in order of difficulty and content area, then shared his list with his students through Moodle. The idea is that the kids get to start with the curriculum that they need rather than the curriculum which comes first in the book. It’s a great way to turn one teacher into 15.

When the students finish their video and feel that they have absorbed enough information, they were instructed to come back to my colleague and ask any questions they had and find out what problems from the text would be best for them to do. Here’s where my colleague discovered a flaw. After about 15 minutes, which is the length of one video, he suddenly had 22 8th graders asking him for problems. Wooops. Now he’s setting up the problem exercises in advance. It will blow his mind when I show him that he can use something like to automatically give the students feedback on their problems as well…